It was a last minute change that put me into the Peugeot 2008 GT. I was expecting a larger car but as sometimes happens, the world had other plans for me this week. Though, once inside, I realised the Peugeot 2008 GT is bigger than it looks.
Somehow I found myself sitting in the back seat on several trips and each time I was pleasantly surprised with the space. With a boot large enough for two suitcases and other hand luggage, I didn’t expect room for two adults in the rear seats. Earlier this year I drove the e2008 but I guess I was focusing on the electric powertrain rather than the passenger comfort.
Peugeot claims that the use of a two-position boot floor expands the load area versatility by giving a choice of maximised boot volume when the rear seat is used by occupants or a flat floor when the one-third/two-thirds rear seats are fully folded.
Our team had a chance to drive the 2008 GT when the current model was launched two years ago. There’s a video on our YouTube channel where Rod describes the front and rear styling as the most attractive features. It’s true the 2008 doesn’t conform to the styling trends favoured by the popular Asian brands. But why should it? It’s European.
Being European, it has some other unique features as well. A noticeable one is the 1.2 litre three cylinder engine. It’s small yet capable. It drives like a hybrid. At low speed it feels like a struggle until the engine revs increase and the torque from the turbo kicks in. While at high speed it’s smooth and powerful.
The EAT6 6-speed automatic transmission is also different. Sometimes it feels like a manual without the jerky gear changes. Several times when rolling to a stop, my foot reached for the clutch because it felt like it was going to stall. Most times it picked a gear higher than it needed which reminded me of driving lessons in a manual with my kids.
Parking was a breeze thanks to the 180-degree rear camera that works with other sensors in conjunction with the steering system to give you a bird’s eye view of the parking spot. It’s a feature not often found in smaller cars but I found it handy due to the low visibility out of the rear window.
My favourite feature in the Peugeot 2008GT was the auto locking system. I never needed to wonder, have I locked the car? Every time you walked away with the key, the featured packed SUV would lock itself with an audible sound as a reminder. Then open as you returned. A simple featured that really enhanced the enjoyment of the vehicle.
The massage feature in the electric driver’s seat was simple but effective. It used the inflatable lumbar support rather than rotating metal components. Another European quirk that added to the list things you don’t find in the top selling models in Australia.
I was disappointed to find the cruise control was adaptive. With so may electronic safety features as standard, this was a notable omission.
If you haven’t lived or travelled in Europe a Peugeot is unlikely to make the short list when shopping for a new car in Australia. But if you’re feeling like a change in style and comfort, you won’t be disappointed with a test drive.