Peugeot has had somewhat of a revival of late, moving more upmarket and launching some of the most striking-looking cars on the UK’s roads today.
And arguably the most premium of Peugeot’s range is the 508 – a sleek and high-quality French saloon that aims to offer something more different than your typical Ford Mondeo and Vauxhall Insignia.
Up until now, it’s only been available with regular petrol and diesel engines, but Peugeot is now changing that with the introduction of a new company car-friendly plug-in hybrid model. It’s a powertrain used in other models from across the PSA Group, including the Vauxhall Grandland X and Citroen C5 Aircross Hybrid, but what’s it like in the 508? Let’s take a look.
For the 508 Hybrid, Peugeot combines an existing 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine together with an electric motor to produce 222bhp. It’s not brimming in pace, but offers a good amount of punch to it, with 0-60mph taking 8.1 seconds and the model capable of a 155mph top speed.
But it’s the 11.8kWh battery that will be the highlight for many, with Peugeot claiming it can travel for between 33 and 39 miles on electricity – allowing for a fuel economy figure of around 200mpg, along with CO2 emissions of just 33g/km. The latter places the 508 in a benefit-in-kind bracket of 10 per cent, making it a great option for company car drivers.
The battery can also be topped up in less than two hours as well, while using a 7kW home charger.
Ride and handling
Though the 508 might look sporty and stylish, its greatest assets are actually its comfort and refinement. Even on a larger set of alloy wheels, the ride remains comfortable and compliant. And though PHEVs are often popular around town, this Peugeot is actually fantastic at higher speeds where it’s supple and quiet.
A ‘Sport’ driving setting can be selected to make it more engaging, though we reckon the 508 is best left in its standard driving modes. However, unlike other hybrids, the switch from electric to petrol is seamless. The only real downside to the driving experience is that the eight-speed automatic gearbox isn’t the smoothest, though it’s far from disappointing.
Interior and equipment
Just as the exterior styling is quite wild, so are things in the cabin as well. It’s seriously upmarket in here, and would shock plenty driving around in models from more established premium brands. Yet it’s also cool as well, what with a great set of digital dials up ahead, a large touchscreen system that can be controlled by funky toggle switches and a small steering wheel. The latter has become a trait of modern Peugeots, though some drivers might struggle to get used to the strange adjustment.
Inside, the 508 is also roomy as well, with a decent amount of rear space even with the sloping roofline and a boot that loses none of the spaciousness of its regular petrol and diesel counterparts.
In terms of equipment, three trim levels are available on the 508 – Allure, GT Line and GT.
All come generously equipped with a 12.3-inch digital dial system, reversing camera, heated front seats and 10-inch touchscreen all included as standard.
Upgrading to the GT Line brings full LED headlights, along with more stylish 18-inch alloy wheels and wireless smartphone charging. At the top of the range, the GT is laden with kit – including an electric boot, Focal sound system, full leather upholstery and massaging front seats.
Plug-in hybrids are typically the most expensive models in a brand’s range and that’s the case with the 508, too, with this Hybrid starting from £34,945, though it’s only around £2,000 more expensive than a similarly-powerful petrol, which won’t have the low running costs.
That entry-level model certainly gets plenty of equipment as standard and makes it a good buy, though prices rise to £36,695 for the GT Line and £40,645 for the top-spec GT.
Introducing a new plug-in hybrid to the Peugeot 508 range has only added to its appeal, bringing low running costs to this stylish and high-quality model.
Though some might hope for something a bit sportier behind the wheel, the 508’s focus on comfort and refinement above all else is likely to appeal to more buyers than if Peugeot had selected outright thrills. Next to rivals like the Skoda Octavia iV and Volkswagen Passat GTE, it’s certainly worth considering.Enquire on a new Peugeot 508 Hybrid