The upper-crust crossover SUV: Peugeot 3008 road test
THE French crossover Peugeot 3008 gains an edge with its five-seat interior flair.
Peugeot doesn't sell budget-basic models in Australia. Aiming for buyers who want more of life's luxuries than a rental-spec crossover, the 3008 Crossway is priced from $43,490 plus on-road costs ($4000 more than the well-equipped 3008 Allure, pictured), adding a high-end audio and premium interior trim to mild exterior touches.
Those niceties build on regular 3008 kit including an eight-inch touchscreen, 12.3-inch digital driver display, smart keys and smartphone integration. Peugeot backs the 3008 with a five-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty and roadside assistance. Servicing is dear at $1728 for the first three years or 60,000km.
Pain at service time is soothed daily by an impressive interior. Standard 3008s feel well-finished but the Crossway goes much further with plush Alcantara trim and blue stitching matched by sapphire ambient lighting. The cabin makes a strong first impression - not least because of a toy-like compact steering wheel mounted low in your lap.
As an ergonomic compromise in an otherwise exemplary cabin home to French quirks, it's joined by an odd banana-shaped gear shifter. The 10-speaker, 515W Focal audio replaces the standard eight-speaker, 160W set-up, bringing pleasant punch to the morning commute. Cleverly, the stereo includes a 200mm subwoofer mounted in the floor, using the car's core frame for extra oomph.
The Peugeot's strong body held up well in crash testing, earning a five-star safety rating.
Equipped with six airbags, the 3008 has autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assistance, blind spot monitoring and more.
The 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbo (121kW/ 240Nm) is adequate but sweet and is matched with an intuitive six-speed automatic transmission. The front-drive Peugeot promises cross-country adventure with sophisticated "Grip Control" traction management with five driving modes. Tested in Tarmac mode, it impressed with a supple, sophisticated ride in varied conditions. The 3008 feels nimble and well-sorted on the road, adding dynamic fluency to its design flair.
Mazda CX-5 GT, from $44,470 plus on-roads
Australia's best-selling SUV blends a crisp driving experience with sharp styling. The GT builds on that with powerful Bose audio, leather trim, power tailgate and other luxuries to tackle Euro rivals.
Skoda Kodiaq, from $42,990 plus on-roads
Design genius is everywhere you look in the award-winning Kodiaq which embodies Skoda's "Simply clever" ethos. Lovely to drive and loaded with kit, the Czech machine is worth consideration.
Subaru Forester 2.5i-S, from $41,490 plus on-roads
The Forester is a safe bet loaded with class-leading driver aids and all-wheel drive. Competent and practical, the conservative Subaru lacks Peugeot's eye-catching design and attention to detail.
Peugeot's compact SUV deserves a look (as does its seven-seat 5008 cousin) thanks to good road manners and a level of design polish mainstream rivals can't match.
PEUGEOT 3008 CROSSWAY
PRICE $43,490 plus on-roads
SAFETY 5 stars, 6 airbags, AEB, reverse camera, sensors
ENGINE 1.6-litre 4-cyl turbo, 121kW/240Nm