Peugeot 508 (2018-present)

The striking Peugeot 508 aims to woo Mondeo man with a bold design, high-tech interior and a surprisingly good drive

Strengths & Weaknesses

Strengths 

Stylish design
Comfortable and agile
Hi-tech, quality interior

Weaknesses 

Limited headroom in rear
Expensive finance quotes
Safety systems can intervene unnecessarily.
2019 Peugeot 508 prices from £19,495   Finance from £281 per month

Considering Peugeot is a French company with headquarters in Paris its cars have recently lacked the style of the world's fashion capital.

Not so with the latest sharply-styled Peugeot 508, the latest model aimed at making Peugeot synonymous with style and technology.

As well as the strking exterior design, the 508 also has a flashy interior, with two large screens on the dashboard in a similar layout to the taller 3008 and 5008 sport utility cars.

Those cars are strong-selling, practical models, whereas the 508 sacrifices some of the usability for extra sportiness and style.

The sweeping 'fastback' shape might be very easy on the eye but it does impede on headroom for rear passengers, which could be a problem for taller occupants. The boot's a useful 487 litres in size, although that's smaller than the Volkswagen Arteon's 563 litres.

However, like the alternative Arteon, Ford Mondeo or Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport, the 508 is aimed at business users who rack up large motorway mileages. As a result, it offers a range of diesel and petrol engines, which return competitive fuel economy figures and low carbon dioxide emissions 

No engine emits more than 132g/km of CO2, which makes them extremely competitive in terms of monthly running costs, while fuel economy is as high as 60mpg in the smaller diesel versions.

Adaptive cruise control and steering assist systems are available as options, enabling the car to steer itself within its lane and maintain a safe distance from the car in front, although - as with all other systems - you still need to keep your hands on the wheel and be ready to take over at any moment. You'll find yourself intervening regularly, as the car steers unnaturally.

Without the assistance, the 508 is comfortable and reasonably engaging to drive in corners, with responsive steering. The experience is verging on fun, if only the engines offered more power.

The steering wheel is small and responsive, making the 508 feel agile and sprightly, while optional variable damping, which electronically adjusts the suspension to be softer or firmer, means it can be wafting and comfortable or firmer and more athletic when the mood takes.

Most of the engine range, bar the entry-level 130hp diesel, come with an eight-speed automatic gearbox, which changes gear effortlessly when driven normally but can be slightly slow to react under more aggressive inputs. There are paddles mounted behind the steering wheel that allow for manual gear changes.

That tiny steering wheel features a flat bottom and a flat top, which can take a while to get used to. Some drivers find that it obscures the display behind, but others say that it provides a full view of the digital screen where an analogue speedometer would typically be installed.

It's one part of Peugeot's i-Cockpit display and the 12.3-inch TFT display can be adjusted and adapted to show a number of different read outs, including music information or navigational instructions, as well as speed. A ten-inch touchscreen (eight inches on basic Active trim) sits in the middle of the cockpit and is used to set your destination, adjust the ventilation controls, and to run the Apple CarPlay and Android Auto software, which pulls phone apps onto the display.

Machined metal toggle switches and piano black surfaces giving the interior a real sense of luxury an interesting alternative to the competition.

But the prices also hint at luxury, starting at more than £25,000 from new - before discounts - and rising to almost £40,000. This makes it expensive compared to the Ford Mondeo, as well as the Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport, which isn't far off 508 levels of comfort, sportiness and quality. Finance prices are also not a great deal less than those for an Audi A4 or Volvo V60, which bring similar levels of quality and comfort. 

But the Peugeot 508 is good enough to be a worthy alternative to these so-called premium models. The toughest task it faces is convincing buyers of the same.

Last Updated 

Tuesday, April 16, 2019 - 22:45

Best Peugeot 508 for... 

Peugeot 508 Active BlueHDi 130 Auto
The cheapest model in the range also emits the least CO2 at just 98g/km has an official fuel economy figure of 76.3mpg
Peugeot 508 Allure BlueHDi 180 Auto
The more powerful diesel engine suits the car, offering an excellent blend of fuel economy and performance. Allure trim also adds faux leather seating and a larger touch screen infotainment system.
Peugeot 508 GT PureTech 225 auto
The most powerful petrol engine in the range offers the quickest acceleration figures (0-62mph in 7.3 seconds) and the sportiest exhaust note, while this GT trim throws in carbon effect interior features and unique alloy wheels.

Peugeot 508 History 

  • 2018 New Peugeot 508 goes on sale

Understanding Peugeot 508 car names 

  • 508
  • Trim level
    Allure
  • Engine
    1.6 litre PureTech 180
  • Gearbox
    EAT8
  • Trim level
    There are five trims (Active, Allure, GT Line, GT and First Edition) with each level boasting greater specification and an increased price tag.
  • Engine
    The engine size is shown in litres (here it's 1.6). Petrol versions are badged PureTech, while diesels are shown as BlueHDi. The final number is the power of the engine in horsepower
  • Gearbox
    Peugeot's automatic gearboxes are labelled EAT8.

Peugeot 508 Engines 

Diesel: 1.5 litre BlueHDi 130, 2.0-litre BlueHDi 160, 2.0-litre BlueHDi 180
Petrol: 1.6-litre PureTech 180 and 1.6-litre PureTech 225

Diesel engines are expected to be the most popular choice of Peugeot 508 buyers and understandably so, because they are quiet, even under acceleration. The smallest 1.5-litre BlueHDI 130 diesel is the only engine available with the manual gearbox, and although it features some enticing economy figures, it does lack power.

The most popular engine will be the 2.0-litre BlueHDi 180 diesel and it's well-balanced with more power for swift and effortless acceleration, as well as an official fuel economy figure of up to 50mpg.

The most fun is to be had with the most powerful 1.6-litre PureTech 225 petrol unit, 

The eight speed automatic gearbox is extremely easy to live with and has no problems selecting the right gear for the moment, although it could be slightly quicker under hard acceleration but it's easy to look past.

A petrol/electric hybrid version will be offered later this year, which is tipped to have an all-electric range of around 25 miles.

Fuel

Official fuel economy

CO2 emissions

Power

Acceleration (0-62mph)

Top speed

1.5 litre BlueHDi 130 Auto

Diesel

51.4-58.6mpg

99-105g/km

128bhp

10sec

129mph

2.0-litre BlueHDi 160 Auto

Diesel

45.2-51.1mpg

118-122g/km

158bhp

8.4sec

143mph

2.0-litre BlueHDi 180 Auto

Diesel

45-50.6mpg

124-125g/km

177bhp

8.3sec

146mph

1.6-litre PureTech 180 Auto

Petrol

38-41.8mpg

123-127g/km

177bhp

7.9sec

143mph

1.6-litre PureTech 225 Auto

Petrol

36.3-39.8mpg

130-132g/km

223bhp

7.3sec

155mph

Peugeot 508 Trims 

Active, Allure, GT Line, GT and First Edition

The most 'basic' Active vehicles come fitted with the dual-screen i-Cockpit display, as well as automatic climate control, rear parking snsors, sat-nav, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay for easy use of your phone apps in the car, as well as 17in alloy wheels.

Upgrading to Allure specification brings a larger 10in and active suspension that adjusts to suit the road conditions on 1.6-litre PureTech 180 models. Extra safety features come as standard too, including blind spot monitoring, speed limit and road sign recognition. Mood lighting and leather-effect seating make it feel like a more premium proposition inside.

The differences between GT Line and GT models are slightly confusing, but the former adds full LED headlights and indicators, 18in wheels, which make the car look more muscular, as well as sportier touches to exterior elements, pedals and dashboard.

GT models receive even larger 19-inch alloy wheels, an excellent FOCAL premium sound system, a full grain leather interior, a motorised bootlid, as well as adaptive cruise control and lane positioning assist which can accelerate, brake and steer the car to keep it in lane and a safe distance from traffic - with the full supervision of the driver, as it is not completely accurate.

Finally, a limited run First Edition throws in a night vision system, which is usually an optional extra, a 360-degree parking camera, bespoke wheels and a rather fetching Alcantara and part-Nappa leather interior finish.

Peugeot 508 Reliability and warranty 

Peugeot has come a long way since the days of questionable reliability among the French manufacturers, with its 3008 SUV model ranking at the very top of the 2018 Auto Express Driver Power Survey, with an impressive 93.88 per cent of owners asked satisfied with their purchase.

Build quality in the new 508 feels extremely solid and the on-board technology is quick and responsive. The warranty lasts for a fairly standard three years and is limited to the first 60,000 miles.

Other Editions