What's the used Peugeot Rifter estate like?
SUVs and MPVs are much the same if you think about it. Both do multiple jobs, have raised driving positions and are highly practical. But it’s often been the case buyers choose SUVs instead despite the running cost penalties. The Peugeot Rifter, on the other hand combines the practicality of an MPV with rugged looks of an off-roader tempt used buyers away from their SUV safety net.
There’s a choice of one 109bhp turbocharged three-cylinder, 1.2-litre petrol engine and a 1.5-litre diesel that comes in three different states of tune: 74bhp, 99bhp and 128bhp. The petrol shouldn’t be discounted despite it only having three-cylinders because it is still perfectly capable of coping with a full car load. However, the diesels are still pretty refined and, as long as you avoid the lowest-output 74bhp version, are brisk enough for everyday life. If you go for the most powerful version, there’s the option of a smooth-shifting eight-speed automatic gearbox.
Much like the Citroën Berlingo, the Peugeot Rifter is an easy vehicle to drive with light steering, a commanding driving position, big mirrors and a compliant ride, although examples with bigger 17in wheels can feel a bit crashy at lower speeds in town. Road noise is quelled well, even on the more coarse surfaces of our motorway network. Wind noise can be heard thanks to the fairly steep windscreen, but never to an excessive degree.
It’ll come as no surprise that the Rifter will be a great vehicle for families. We tested the Vauxhall Combo Life (a car to which the Rifter is closely related) as part of a car child seat test and found that you could fit three separate child seats across the second row. One word of warning though is that if you go for the longer, seven seater version, you shouldn’t put child seats in the third row according to safety experts at EuroNCAP because they’re just not suitable enough. Older family members who don’t need a safety seat should be fine because the seats can be moved forwards and backwards to increase leg room at the expense of luggage capacity.
On the subject of luggage capacity, both the regular five and seven seat models have cavernous boots that are very square, and should have no trouble swallowing big, bulky items. Five seat versions can have extra storage areas on the ceiling for storing smaller items such as sunglasses out of the way. Some might find the lack of a traditional glove box as being a bit remiss, but there is a cubby in the top section of the dashboard where the passenger airbag would normally go. It does still have a passenger airbag, but it deploys from the roof lining, if you were wondering. Mid-range Allure models and above have a standard centre console between the front seats (an option on the Berlingo) with additional spaces to put things and two extra air vents for rear seat passengers.
The entry-level Active is perhaps a little too basic because it does without the 8in infotainment system, but you do get air con, cruise control, lane keep assistance, speed limit recognition and automatic emergency braking. Mid-range Allure is better with 16in alloys, the 8in touchscreen system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, rear parking sensors, electric rear windows, lumbar support for front seats and a centre console. GT line make the exterior slightly smarter but on adds 17in alloys, dual zone climate control and sat nav.
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