The 1.2-litre petrol is available in three outputs, badged 82, 110 and 130.
We haven’t driven the lower powered version, but the 110 feels punchy and flexible, and willing to rev. However, if you do a lot of motorway miles it may be worth considering that the 110 gets a five-speed manual, where the 130 gets a six-speed manual that sees it hold lower revs at motorway speeds.
A 1.6 BlueHDi diesel is also available in three power outputs – 75, 100 and 120. We haven’t driven the lower powered version, but both higher powered diesels offer good flexibility.
The higher powered versions of the 1.6 diesel and 1.2 petrol, when bought in mid-spec Allure trim or up, get Peugeot’s Grip Control – effectively a more advanced traction control system.
Peugeot 2008 ride comfort
The 2008’s ride is a weak point. At lower speeds, rippled roads and potholes send thumps through the cabin, and as speed builds those same imperfections feel less harsh initially, but still cause the 2008’s body to become unsettled. Sticking with the smallest wheels possible will keep sharp-edged bumps at bay to a degree, but you’ll still feel them more than in rivals.
Peugeot 2008 handling
Should you just want to weave through urban traffic, then the 2008 does a good job. Its light steering makes it easy to nip in and out of lanes, while low-speed manoeuvres such as parking are made that bit easier.
However, with more speed comes less composure, because tight turns cause the 2008’s body to lean and the front wheels lose grip sooner than some of its better-driving rivals.
The light steering might be a boon in town, but it doesn’t help matters at speed. It gives you very little idea of what the front wheels are doing, and feels overly reactive initially, so it’s too easy to apply a bit more lock than you need and have to correct it mid-corner. It just doesn’t inspire much confidence.
Peugeot 2008 refinement
The 1.2 petrol is actually the most refined of the range. It never becomes too noisy, and apart from some slight buzz through the pedals at its top end, it’s generally smooth.
The diesels are a little clattery at idle, and start to send noise and vibration into the cabin beyond 3000rpm, but their good torque means you shouldn’t have to push them too hard to make progress.
Get up to motorway speeds and you’ll notice a fair amount of wind noise around the door mirrors, and quite a bit of road noise echoing around the cabin as well, while suspension noise is a noticeable noise at lower speeds. The manual gearbox isn’t the slickest, either, and the five-speed automatic can be jerky.
We haven’t driven this engine yet. It’s available with a five-speed manual as standard, or with a five-speed semi-automatic gearbox.
1.2 PureTech 110
This is the pick of the range for private buyers, since it revs smoothly and offers fairly flexible power delivery. The standard five-speed manual gearbox is a bit vague and long-throw, though; the optional six-speed automatic is also slow shifting but is smooth and easy to get on with in normal driving.
1.2 PureTech 130
You can’t have this with an automatic gearbox, but it does come with a six-speed manual as standard. It’s a decent engine, with quite satisfying mid-range response, but it’s a bit expensive to recommend.
1.6 BlueHDi 75
We haven’t driven this engine yet. It’s only available with a five-speed manual gearbox.
1.6 BlueHDi 100
This is a good option for company car users or private buyers expecting to do a lot of miles, since it’s efficient and available in well-specced but good value Active trim. The engine is a bit gruff if you rev it, but there’s enough mid-range torque that you don’t really need to. It’s only available with a five-speed manual gearbox.
1.6 BlueHDi 120
Worth considering, especially if you plan to run your 2008 as a company car. It’s a flexible and satisfyingly responsive diesel engine, and has a six-speed manual gearbox so feels better suited to motorway miles than the five-speed 100 version. CO2 emissions are actually lower than on the other diesels, too, so company car tax costs will be kept right down. It’s a bit pricey as a private buyer, though.