Peugeot 308 long-term test: report 3

The plug-in version of Peugeot's 308 family car can officially travel up to 37 miles on electric power. However, now we're finding our what it's actually like to live with...

Loading the 308 boot

The car Peugeot 308 Hybrid 180 Allure Premium e-EAT8 Run by Kiall Garrett, senior videographer

Why it’s here To find out if the plug-in hybrid version of this family hatchback can be an efficient day-to-day workhorse

Needs to be Comfortable on long journeys and uber-efficient on short ones while having the space for lots of camera equipment

Mileage 8937 List Price £38,640 Target Price £35,974 Price as tested £38,460 Official economy 281.1mpg Test economy 48.1mpg

28 August 2023 – Moving and shaking

If you want something big and practical you have to get a high-riding and expensive SUV, right? This might be the thought-process for lots of new car buyers, but I’m not so sure they’re all correct.

You see, I’ve had the chance to run a variety of SUVs of all shapes and sizes as company cars in my time at What Car?. And as a cameraman always chained to mountains of equipment, practicality is one of my biggest considerations when choosing a new car. Video shoots have been a good test of my Peugeot 308’s load-lugging ability, but this is not a big, high-riding SUV, but rather a humble family car offering a competitive 361 litres of storage in its boot – or 1271 litres if you lower the rear seats.

308 boot underfloor storage

This is, admittedly, a reduction of 51 litres on the 412-litre boot you find in the regular petrol version of the 308. Because I’ve got the plug-in hybrid, I lose a bit of space as a result of the extra batteries that have to be stored under the body. It’s a shame it’s not as big as the regular car, but I can’t say I’ve ever missed that extra 51 litres.

For my day-to-day practicality needs, the 308 has aced things so far. But what about the ultimate test: a house move? I packed what I could into the 308 before the main moving day, partly to reduce the workload, but also to see how many runs I'd need between my old place and my new.

308 boot filled with furniture

A few bags of garden waste, one TV stand and a bench later; the 308 was stocked and ready to go – rear seats down and all, this time. Flattening them is easy, it just needs a tug on the release found on the shoulder of the outer two seats, and when they’re down they’re pretty flat with the boot floor – helpful for sliding long, bulky items in.

But when it comes to practicality, it’s not just the boot you need to consider. Up front, the 308 has a handy split armrest which opens up to reveal a helpfully-sized cubby hiding a couple of USB-C ports. This means I can charge my phone and keep it neatly tucked away, still using Apple CarPlay, without the cable and phone flying around the centre console, which I really like.

True, there is a wireless phone charging station below the infotainment system itself, but my phone seems to very quickly overheat after not getting a lot of charge, so I prefer to use the cable.

Charging cables fitting in underfloor storage

The only disappointing thing when it comes to practicality in my 308 is the underfloor storage. Of course, it’s a bonus to get any extra storage here at all, but the tiny rectangular space on offer means that, if you want to keep the charging cables in there, you need to feed them back into the space with care after you're done charging.

A couple of trips over the course of the day and I was all settled in, owing a huge debt to this spacious family car. Proof, then, that even if you need space, you don't neccessarily need to worship at the SUV altar.

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