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New Skoda Octavia & Volkswagen Golf vs Peugeot 308

The Skoda Octavia and Volkswagen Golf family hatchbacks have just been updated with more efficient petrol engines. Let’s see how they stack up against the frugal Peugeot 308

Words By What Car? team

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New Skoda Octavia & Volkswagen Golf vs Peugeot 308

Our verdict

If you’re buying on finance or you’re a company car driver, the 308 is the cheapest option here. Unfortunately, nervous handling, an unsettled ride and decidedly cramped rear seats all count against it. If you’re buying outright, you’ll also have to suffer heavy depreciation, so all told, it finishes well behind.

In contrast, the Golf’s new 128bhp 1.5-litre petrol is now our pick of the range and worthy of a five-star rating. The Golf is the most agile and has the comfiest ride, too. That it’s also the quietest and has the highest-quality interior makes it a hugely compelling buy.

But all things considered, the Octavia has to be our winner. It’s fractionally behind the Golf on ride, handling and interior quality, yes, but it has a punchier engine, the most standard kit and unrivalled space and practicality in this class. Plus, while it isn’t quite as cheap to own privately as the Golf, it is cheaper if you’re buying on finance or leasing.

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1st – Skoda Octavia

For Limo-like rear seat space; lots of standard equipment; colossal boot

Against Suspension noise; ride isn’t as comfy as the Golf’s

Recommended options Metallic paint (Β£555)

Rated 5 out of 5

Read our full Skoda Octavia review

Find a great Skoda Octavia deal


2nd – Volkswagen Golf

For Classiest interior; most comfortable ride; assured handling

Against Most expensive monthly PCP payments; not nearly as roomy as the Octavia

Recommended options Climate control (Β£415)

Rated 5 out of 5

Read our full Volkswagen Golf review

Find a great Volkswagen Golf deal


3rd – Peugeot 308

For Cheapest PCP payments; lowest CO2 emissions; decent boot

Against Brittle ride; fiddly infotainment system; automatic emergency braking not standard

Recommended options Drive Assist Pack (Β£400)

Rated 3 out of 5

Read our full Peugeot 308 review

Find a great Peugeot 308 deal


Specifications: Peugeot 308 1.2 THP 130 Allure

Engine size 3cyl, 1199cc, petrol

List price Β£20,440

Target Price Β£19,412

Power 129bhp @ 5500rpm

Torque 125Ib ft @ 1750rpm

Gearbox 6-spd manual

0-60mph 9.7sec

Top speed 129mph

Gov't fuel economy 61.4mpg

True MPG n/a

CO2 emissions 107g/km


Specifications: Skoda Octavia 1.5 TSI 150 SE L

Engine size 4cyl, 1495cc, petrol

List price Β£21,865

Target Price Β£20,075

Power 148bhp @ 5000rpm

Torque 184Ib ft @ 1500-3500rpm

Gearbox 6-spd manual

0-60mph 8.6sec

Top speed 136mph

Gov't fuel economy 56.5mpg

True MPG 40.2mpg

CO2 emissions 114g/km


Specifications: Volkswagen Golf 1.5 TSI Evo 130 SE Navigation

Engine size 4cyl, 1495cc, petrol

List price Β£21,790

Target Price Β£19,902

Power 128bhp @ 5000rpm

Torque 148Ib ft @ 1400rpm

0-60mph 9.7sec

Top speed 131mph

Gov't fuel economy 58.9mpg

True MPG 38.3mpg

CO2 emissions 113g/km

Read more: The best family cars >

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