Performance & drive
What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is
Engine, 0-60mph and gearbox
For the time being, at least, the Peugeot 5008's engine range is restricted to just the 129bhp 1.2-litre petrol and 129bhp 1.5-litre diesel – both paired with an automatic gearbox. The rest of the engine range is from stock only.
You might be suspicious that the 129bhp 1.2-litre engine (badged Puretech 130) is too small to power a seven-seat SUV adequately. Well, you can relax – it’s eager to rev and packs enough punch for most people's performance needs. It takes 9.9sec to get from 0-62mph, and with plenty of low-down shove, it feels far stronger on the road than the numbers suggest. The 129bhp 1.5-litre diesel (BlueHDi 130) isn’t what you’d call fast (0-62mph takes 11.1sec), but has solid mid-range pull and hauls you along effortlessly. In the end, the petrol is our pick of the range.
It's far calmer at motorway speeds than the stiffly sprung Seat Tarraco and even has the edge over the generally comfy Skoda Kodiaq. If you’re after a very restful long-distance machine, only the Citroën C5 Aircross betters it for high-speed waft, unless you start looking at more expensive premium models with air suspension, such as the Audi Q5.
One word of warning for anyone thinking of opting for a 5008 with Grip Control (seeing Handling) is that it will come with all-weather tyres, which introduce a harder edge to the ride compared with the standard tyres.
On all versions, the brakes are a little grabby in stop-start traffic and the springy clutch and slightly vague gearlever action of the manuals is less than is ideal. The Kodiaq and Tarraco are much better in this respect. The automatic gearbox is pretty good, changing smoothly most of the time, although it can be a little abrupt at parking speeds. This is most apparent with the 1.5 BlueHDi engine. None of those weaknesses make the 5008 unpleasant to drive – it's just not as well-mannered as the Kodiaq.