Review by it
Monday, May 16, 2016
- Quiet and smooth engines
- Great safety features
- Economical diesels
- Disappointing suspension system
The 308 is the first new generation Peugeot to receive the index 8. The first Peugeot car in the 300-series appeared in 1932. It is still a popular mid-size family car 80 years on and the new 308 is a great family car offering good fuel-economy and practical value.
Exterior and Interior
Although the 308 received a brand new body, you can still recognise the Peugeot design. If you're wondering what's with the funny front end, it's done for a purpose to reduce the drag to the lowest in the class with a drag coefficient of 0.28. As a result, some diesel versions of the 308 can achieve 67mpg.
The designers have kept the overall styling in accordance with the 407, a car that marked a visibly different direction in Peugeot's design. What was labelled as a disproportionally large grille in 2004 was eventually accepted as modern and tasteful. Peugeot have used the same excessive styling even on the tiny 107.
The 308 is a harmonious car with a good size body, offering five comfortable seats. At the front there's plenty of space even for a tall driver. The rear row of seats is a bit cramped, you might have wished for more legroom, however, the width of the cabin makes a journey quite acceptable.
The interior design lacks finesse. They haven't put too much effort in getting the cabin up to scratch, apparently, the majority of the development money has gone into perfecting the safety system. The 308 is one of the safest cars in its class, regularly receiving top marks in various crash tests. EuroNCAP has awarded it 5 stars!
Performance and Economy
The lowest displacement with 95bhp might feel a bit weak for a person who switches to the 308 from a more powerful car. The 1.4-litre engine is fuel efficient but lacks character. If you don't mind taking longer to accelerate, 44mpg fuel economy should keep you happy. The 1.6-litre unit displays a much more active temperament, especially in its 150bhp edition. If used heartily, they can be quite thirsty despite the touted drag coefficient.
The 92bhp diesel engine is a great option for this car, if used carefully, it can achieve 67mpg. The excellent torque figure makes you forget that you're driving a car of less than 100bhp. As for the 110bhp diesel, it will make the car considerably more agile, but also the fuel bill will be significantly higher.
The top of the range diesel engine with 136bhp to 163bhp is mounted on a limited number of sport models and it is a great engine. It accelerates the car to 60mph in less than 10 seconds and permits to reach a maximum speed of 129mph.
Like to Drive
It is a solid and steady car. Apart from the GT models equipped with the amazing 2.0-litre diesel engine, there's nothing exciting about the 308. The more powerful modifications are fun to drive. You will enjoy plenty of grip regardless of the road surface. Unfortunately, the car is not perfect. Its suspension could be improved, especially from the point of view of the passengers sitting at the rear. Reliability is not an issue at all with the Peugeot 306 (07-) Hatchback.
Faults and Repairs
The 308 is not an expensive car when it comes to maintenance and servicing. The new generation of Peugeots delivers a high level of reliability. Drivers report that the car is prone to cooling system faults, so you better keep an eye on the thermometer and the dashboard fault lights. The latter might be difficult because the 308 is known for its faulty fault lights. The internal diagnostics system may throw an error when there's no error, and still, it can bring some systems to a halt.