On sale September 2018 Price from £26,000 (est)
Launching a new saloon at a time when most families are choosing SUVs is a bold move. It’s the equivalent of trying to tempt your nearest and dearest out of their spacious house and into a stylish but less practical yurt. And yet if the Ford Mondeo and Volkswagen Arteon’s performance on our road test tells us anything, it’s that cars like this can still be a good choice for families – and that’s exactly where Peugeot is pitching the new 508.
Acting as a technology flagship for the French brand, the 508 takes clear styling cues from Peugeot’s revitalised SUV range, namely the 3008 and 5008 – the latter of which is our Large SUV of the Year.
At the front, there are LED headlights and daytime running lights either side of the prominent grille, while the back has new lights taken directly from last year’s Instinct concept car.
2018 Peugeot 508 engines
Two 1.6-litre petrol and four diesel engines will be offered at launch, but it’s the mid-range 1.5-litre 130 diesel that will likely hold the most appeal for UK buyers. This unit can be had with either a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic gearbox. More powerful 2.0-litre diesel options are also available.
Drivers can choose between four driving modes – Eco, Sport, Comfort and Normal – if they choose adaptive suspension.
Interestingly, there will also be a plug-in hybrid version, although that car won’t go on sale until autumn 2019. When it arrives, though, it will be a direct rival to Volkswagen’s Passat GTE, which is currently among our favourite hybrids.
2018 Peugeot 508 interior
Inside, there’s Peugeot’s now familiar i-Cockpit design, which we’ve praised in the past for its ease of use and ensuring that even entry-level models come with plenty of features. In the 508, analogue dials are replaced by a 12.3in digital instrument panel, with a separate standard 8.0in touchscreen given over to infotainment and navigation. That screen can be upgraded to a 10.0in one on Allure models and above.
The i-Cockpit set-up supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring and wireless phone charging. It can be specified with a 360-degree camera system to aid parking or even a self-parking mode.
Other interior features include massaging front seats, as many as four USB sockets, a panoramic glass roof and a vast array of interior storage options.
The 508’s new five-door hatchback shape means there’s now more space inside for your luggage, although an Arteon can carry significantly more. A powered tailgate should be standard-fit.
In terms of safety equipment, the 508 is offered with automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, a lane departure warning and lane-keeping assistance, driver attention monitor, adaptive cruise control and blindspot detection – although Peugeot has yet to reveal how much of that will come as standard. There’s also a new ‘night vision’ mode that uses an infrared camera to detect potential hazards at night.
2018 Peugeot 508 prices
Peugeot won’t reveal final prices for the 508 until closer to the car’s UK launch but, given the new shape and extra features, we’d expect a significant rise on the £25,340 starting price of today’s car. If that price rises to around £26,000, the 508 will be competing against high-end versions of the Mondeo but will appear a comparative bargain next to the more expensive Arteon.
For all the latest reviews, advice and new car deals, sign up to the What Car? newsletter here
Can't stretch your budget to a new Peugeot 508? Never fear, because below we've gathered together some of the best used executive cars on the market, all of which should offer comfortable and refined motoring at the fraction of the cost of a new car.
Best used executive cars
10. Volvo S60
Comfort and class – that’s what the Volvo S60 offers in a nutshell. Granted, it’s a little stodgy to drive compared with some of the other cars here, but if you’re not fussed about that, you get a beautifully styled and appointed interior with some of the best seats on the market, not to mention plenty of equipment. One thing to note, though: the back seats and boot don’t offer as much room as some other executives.
We found: 2013 D3 SE, 15,000 miles, £11,488
9. Skoda Superb
If space is your top priority, then the Skoda Superb makes a whole heap of sense. There’s oodles of room for both front and rear seat passengers, and while it might look like a saloon, it actually has a huge hatchback boot. What’s more, it feels classy and well-built inside, and it’s reassuringly stable at speed, which makes it an ideal choice if you make regular long trips. And don’t forget what great value it is.
8. Audi A4
The Audi A4 is the picture of understated class, with smooth lines and a fabulously built interior. It’s also spacious inside and endowed with an impressive chassis that makes it enjoyable to drive. The downside to that is the firm ride, and it’s worth remembering, too, that the A4 is quite pricey to buy. But if you’ve always fancied having those four rings on your grille, this is a very respectable way to get them.