Modern times require modern thinking, Peugeot doesn’t do conventional thinking these days for they are the philosopher’s of the automotive industry. Take a look at the Peugeot 308 whether in the classic hatchback configuration, estate or GTI mode the 308 is a compact hatch that has matured over all of it’s predecessors combined.
The signature 308 exterior design language is still recognisable it’s better proportioned and better made, 140 kg lighter than its predecessor. The interior is also a step up in quality, yes the steering wheel and binnacle take a short while to adjust to but overall the driving position is good.
The interior is spacious upfront and the drivers environment is simple with many of the primary functions accessed via the touchscreen. Future updates may see the return of physical buttons but I think the dash layout works fine once you get used to how it operates. Less is more.
The interior is a well made and uses mainly ‘posh’ soft touch plastics throughout it’s well screwed together and you don’t feel short-changed sitting inside a 308. Every compact hatch has its downsides and that is space.
Up front is relatively spacious for the average sized persons however the rear seats are… functional for those seated in the back in terms of space. The rear seats can be folded near flat doing so extends volumetric space from 470-litres to 1309-litres.
The 308 is available in six trim levels with prices ranging from £15k for the entry level Access model and up to £26k for the top spec GT. Standard levels of kit are good even the entry models get LED Daytime running lights, DAB mono-zone air-con, USB connection, Bluetooth and cruise-control.
Going for the Allure spec models gets you highlights such 17-inch alloys, full LED headlights parking sensors, a 9.7 infotanment touchscreen with Sat/Nav, electric handbrake and a few more trinkets beside.
The engine range consists of latest generation petrol and diesel units which includes a 1.2-litre 3-cylinder and mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox. The range also includes the 1.6-litre petrol and 2.0-litre diesels both of which are available in power derivatives and are only primed for top spec trim levels.
The Allure model trim is limited to the 1.2-litre petrol unit and the 1.6-litre diesel. The Allure on test was primed with the 1.6-L diesel mated to a six speed manual gearbox, in return you get a strong flexible engine with plenty of low end to mid range punch thanks to 130bhp and 300Nm of torque. So no issues with the engine. Not fast but fast enough for most.
Where the 308 has changed is the ride and handling, the previous generation had a firmer ride and great handling but the ride quality generally inconsistent
The current 308 has less of an edge, it’s a little bit more softer which means a bit of roll through the corners should you desire to go for a banzai drive. It’s a cruiser not a bruiser.
The ride is much more compliant over any surface than the previous generation ever could imagine to be. And it’s better for it. If you want a car to handle like a sports car… get a sports car.
I have said it before and I’ll say it again the 308 offers the best ride quality of any Peugeot right now. The 308 is a modern car for modern times, for the modern Millennial.