What's the used Peugeot 2008 like?
You can’t blame Peugeot for having a go at the whole small SUV thing. It’s an explosively hot marketplace right now. Take one popular 208 hatchback, add an additional ‘0’ in the middle of the name, jack up ride height, fit chunky roof bars, raise the roof and, hey presto, you have the Peugeot 2008.
The 2008 is a little bit bigger than the 208 on which it is based. The boot, for example, is 360 litres in capacity, which makes it 75 litres bigger than its smaller sibling. What’s more, rear seat space is better for two adults. There are also pockets in both rear doors and map storage in the backs of the front seats. However, rivals such as the Renault Captur offer greater flexibility with sliding rear seats that either improve knee space or boot space, plus, the Captur’s load capacity is greater than the 2008’s before you slide the seats forward.
The 2008’s front-seat occupants have less room to play with, especially on cars fitted with a panoramic glass roof. It robs quite a lot of headroom, which could be a problem for taller drivers. The glovebox is very small and is only really large enough for the car’s instruction manual. Shoulder room isn’t great up front either and there’s no armrest. Instead, you get a cubbyhole with a roller cover. It’s a good space for putting keys, chargers and even some more valuable items such as your wallet and phone. Although we’d still recommend you take them with you after you have parked up since there isn’t a lock on this space.
Engine-wise, the 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol is available in 81, 108 or 129bhp guises. There is also a 1.6-litre diesel with either 91 or 113bhp (the facelift in 2017 introduced more powerful 99 and 118bhp versions of the same engine), an underpowered 69bhp 1.4 diesel and a thirsty 118bhp 1.6-litre petrol. Most models come equipped with a five-speed manual, with six-speed units reserved for the more powerful engines. An unpopular automated manual gearbox served as the only automatic option, until a six-speed auto came along with the facelift, though even this is a little on the jerky side.
Peugeot doesn’t offer a four-wheel-drive version of the Peugeot 2008, but it does offer something called Grip Control. Thus equipped, the 2008 will have a rotary dial by the gearlever with five pre-set driving modes: standard, mud, snow, sand and ESP (electronic stability program) off. An electronic differential works in conjunction with the existing electronic safety aids in the car to monitor what the vehicle is doing and the driver’s inputs, and distribute the engine’s power according to whichever driving mode has been selected. On the outside, Grip Control-equipped 2008s will be fitted with mud and snow rated tyres, which help maintain grip levels in slippery situations. Don’t imagine the system is a proper substitute for four-wheel drive, though; it isn’t.
The Peugeot 2008 is a practical car if you need something supermini-sized but want a bit more ride height, but it doesn’t drive particularly well – the ride is crashy and transmits most of that initial shock through the cabin, instead of absorbing it. Handling-wise, the steering is overly light too, which might be good in town but gives you very little idea what is going on with the front wheels when on faster roads. Combined with the smaller steering wheel, it also means you might apply too much lock to begin with, which can exacerbate body roll.