Peugeot has a long history with its ‘10x’ line of small superminis, and more recently city cars with the 106 and 107.
As with the 107, Peugeot’s latest 108 city car shares its underpinnings with models from Citroen and Toyota. It embraces a new look, more technology and also grows slightly in dimension to allow for more cabin space.
The quality has also been taken upmarket with a brand-new dashboard and improved material quality, plus all trim levels now feature a touchscreen.
However, the 108 is a model that could do with a facelift as it’s only received minor updates since it launched in 2014. It remains an appealing city car, but is that enough to compete against fresher-faced competition?
Just one engine is offered on the 108 – a naturally-aspirated 1.0-litre petrol engine producing 71bhp and 126Nm of torque. Unsurprisingly with figures like those, the 108 is not going to be winning any speed contests anytime soon. The jaunt from 0-60mph takes a somewhat lethargic 13.4 seconds, before pushing on to a claimed top speed of 99mph.
Peugeot previously offered a more powerful 1.2-litre unit that has since been discontinued, with this 1.0-litre now being the sole option. To achieve the best progress, it needs to be revved hard, but is surprisingly responsive once you get up to speed. The five-speed manual gearbox isn’t particularly great to use, but it’s the best option next to the five-speed semi-automatic gearbox that’s also offered.
Ride and handling
The 108 feels like the perfect city car behind the wheel, with pleasant steering that is nice and light around the towns this car was designed for. The ride is also remarkably composed and settled for a city car – one of this car’s finest traits.
Visibility is also excellent, which makes parking the 108 a doddle – thanks to large windows all-round and quick steering that has an excellent turn on full lock. High-spec versions also benefit from a reversing camera, too.
It’s not quite so competent outside of the city, particularly at higher speeds, but it performs at an acceptable level for a city car. However, should a lot of your driving be away from urban areas, the Skoda Citigo would be a better performer.See Available 108 Deals
Interior and equipment
Despite the 108’s cabin being several years old, it remains bright and airy. Many buyers will appreciate the lively-coloured and variations of seating upholstery, along with the option to have the trim painted in more vibrant shades.
A seven-inch touchscreen with smartphone mirroring is also fitted to all models, and while lacking the sharpest graphics, it’s more than acceptable on a car at the price. The improvements to the material quality are also felt, helping to elevate the cabin into something that feels as if it’s from the class above.
Standard equipment on the Active includes air-conditioning, the aforementioned seven-inch touchscreen with DAB and Bluetooth, LED daytime running lights and a speed limiter.
The Allure brings 15-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, a reversing camera, a leather steering wheel and a space saver spare wheel.
The range-topping Collection adds a bolder colour choice, along with climate control and heated and electric door mirrors.
Prices for the 108 start from £12,065, which is significantly more than the Toyota Aygo and Citroen C1 that it shares its underpinnings with. That said, the 108 comes with lots more standard equipment than those two cars do. But with flagship models coasting over £15,000, it begins to make the Peugeot look a bit expensive.
The 108 is a charming, well-equipped and surprisingly fun city car that would make a superb first car or a town runabout.
While the model might be starting to feel its age – particularly next to the Toyota Aygo it shares its platform with – the 108 is still a city car that’s definitely worth considering.