Although it was launched in 2013, it took the second-generation model to make it to the big league and it has been riding the crest of the wave ever since.
It remains one of the French brand’s biggest sellers, and the latest mid-life refresh will secure its place on the compact crossover SUV podium.
Not straying too far from the winning ingredients, the latest offering has been treated to a completely revised front end, complete with a new light signature and an extra-large lion logo located in the center of a sleeker grille.
The three claw-shaped LEDs – up from one – make it unmistakably Peugeot, while at the rear, slimmer lighting clusters flow into the piano black panel that bears the name, giving it a premium feel.
Two-tone color schemes (on higher-spec models) add a touch of luxury, as do black mirrors and exclusive alloy wheels.
Inside, you’ll get the same space-age, driver-focused wraparound dashboard with the legendary i-Cockpit, which has been updated and features a new digital instrument cluster design and a 10-inch central touchscreen for all models.
It is home to the infotainment system and offers full connectivity through wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto mirroring for phone, music and apps.
The system is quick and easy to access and operate, but I found it disappointing that the fan controls were digital despite the fact that a toggle switch actually turned them on or off. As a result, you either have hot air or a very cold blast between the two, and on winter mornings, this will drive you crazy.
However, the new 2008 is equipped with the latest safety technology, including automatic emergency braking with pedestrian and cyclist detection; Recognize and display traffic signs extensively; active lane departure warning with lane correction; blind spot monitoring; Improved traction with grip control.
There are three specifications – Active, Allure and GT – with a choice of engines, including a new 115 kW/156 hp electric motor with a range of up to 406 km (WLTP).
There is also a choice of 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol engines. The entry-level PureTech 100 engine is paired with a six-speed manual gearbox, while the PureTech 130 engine can be combined with an eight-speed EAT8 automatic gearbox or a six-speed manual. A hybrid option will follow later this year with a 48V hybrid setup, which consists of a new 1.2-litre PureTech petrol unit generating 136bhp coupled with a new six-speed dual-clutch electric gearbox incorporating an electric motor.
We tested the swamp standard 100 (which stands for 100 horsepower) with the six-speed manual and found it refreshingly honest.
It doesn’t claim to be a hot hatch – 0-100km/h takes 8.9 seconds – and its handling on twisty B-roads is hampered by the high driving position and extra mass.
But what it lacks in front-line speed and agility, it makes up for in comfort and ride. Around town, the light steering is an absolute joy, and once you’re on the highway, it cruises effortlessly.
It also consumes fuel, and for a car of this size, it consumes 5.3 liters per 100 km. Motorway driving will see this figure rise to over six litres, but this is still very economical and the annual road tax is just €200.
So, if you’re not quite ready to move to plug-in or electric, this little dog might be the one for you.
Peugeot 2008 prices start from 30,440 euros.
Is this the last Volkswagen Golf GTI we’ll ever see?
To celebrate the Golf’s 50th anniversary, Volkswagen is giving its iconic hatchback a facelift, including a GTI version.
A heavily camouflaged example was unveiled at the CES technology conference in Las Vegas last week and it looks pretty cool.
Unsurprisingly, the design gets minimal tweaks, with new headlights and taillights and a slimmer grille, but it’s on the inside where the majority of the changes happen.
The huge infotainment screen in the middle will now be backlit, while the slider controls below will also be illuminated.
The software has also been updated and now integrates ChatGPT into the voice-controlled Intelligent Digital Assistant (IDA) system.
This means that the IDA voice assistant can be used to control the infotainment system, navigation and air conditioning, or to answer general travel questions such as: how far is it to my destination, what is the weather there, speed limits and more.
There’s no information yet on the engine lineup, but we expect the range to remain largely the same. On the GTI front, the good news is that the Mk 8.5 will get a power boost – increasing power from 242bhp to 260. VW bosses are tight-lipped about the possibility of a new R model, so this could be the last GTI we build. We will see it in its purest form.
The new Golf is scheduled to arrive in Irish showrooms by the summer, with a full launch expected in the coming weeks.
Full specifications and prices will be announced later.
Cupra boosts Seat bumper sales for 2023
SEAT achieved its second-highest sales volume ever last year, boosted by the success of the Cupra performance wing.
In total, the Volkswagen-owned Spanish company delivered 519,200 vehicles, up 34.6% on the previous year – strengthening its position in the market as it transitions towards electrification. Cobra broke records again with 230,700 deliveries, an increase of 50.9% compared to 2022.
Alleviating shortages in the supply chain led to increased production and growth at a rate exceeding 10%.
Furthermore, deliveries of Seat and Cupra reached 47,200 vehicles in the final month of the year, representing the best December results in the company’s history.
In Ireland, combined sales of the two brands increased by an impressive 95% compared to the previous year. Cupra, in particular, has seen an outstanding growth rate thanks to models such as the Formentor and Born, with a staggering 149% increase in sales.