News that matters for fleet decision-makers
FleetPoint Test Drive The Peugeot 308 SW
by Neil Thomason
April 9, 2015
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VERDICT: A thoroughly impressive package that doesn't sacrifice performance for size, all the while being surprisingly economic.
FLEETPOINT RATING: Four star rating
PRICE: £ 24,209
Racing car feel, Reassuring level of grip, Comfortable, quiet and relaxing ride Touchscreen tablet usability, Doesn't really take bumps and potholes very well

Specification
Engine:
1.6
Max Power:
110PS
Max torque:
254
Top speed:
121
0-62mph:
6.1 sec
Based on the award winning Peugeot 308, the SW already has an excellent base to work from. Add to this a spacious load space and all the mod-cons you would want from a car in 2015 and you're beginning to tick all the right boxes about what an estate car should offer.

Priced to compete with the Volkswagen Golf Estate and the Honda Civic Tourer, can the 308 SW live up to the hatch's reputation and challenge these heavyweights?
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Performance
The first thing you may notice when you get in the driver's seat is the small steering wheel, paradoxically giving the SW a racing car feel.

This serves to add a reassuring level of grip and composure to your driving which is great as, on instinct, you may expect a SW to be cumbersome and sluggish. The light steering therefore gives the car an 'easy to drive' feel.

The clutch pedal does feel kind of numb though and it does take a lot of focus to pull away smoothly/not stall in traffic.

The 1.6 HDi engine is very responsive on the open road - providing a comfortable, quiet and relaxing ride when cruising on long stretches - and you will fly through the six-speed manual gearbox.

Take it onto smaller roads though and you find that it doesn't really take bumps and potholes very well.
Space
Peugeot have worked on making the car as practical and spacious as possible and, as stated, have very much gone the minimalist route which is perfect.

The dash design is attractive, the high-set dials are visible over the small steering wheel, and the touchscreen tablet groups the multimedia and climate controls together to leave the centre console uncluttered.

An electric parking brake is fitted as standard which frees some more space for storage... speaking of cabin storage, the glovebox is tiny, as in 'I can maybe fit a pair of actual gloves in there' tiny.

The boot is heavy to open, revealing a 660-litre storage space. Fold the passenger seats down flat and this expands to a whopping 1,775 litres which is surely the biggest in its class. Add to this subtle touch's such as load rails in the floor and seat-folding levers in the sides of the boot and you're onto a winner.

One problem I did have was with the load cover as you have to twist it out of position which proved to be fiddly to hook and unhook into place.
Running Cost
If you want ultimate low-tax economy for your fleet then the BlueHDI 1.6 Euro 6 diesel engine model we tested is your knight in shining armour, making 120bhp and 88.3mpg for just 85g/km.

Given its huge load space at the back, that’s pretty impressive!
Conclusion
A lot of people hold old biases against Peugeot but I think you owe it to yourself to try the 308 SW rather than instinctively opting for one of its more mainstream and more expensive competitors.
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