Technology that makes useful sense
The new Peugeot 508 debuts an array of advanced systems and technologies not previously offered by the French marque. While the exact array of systems on offer depends on the particular model, the technologies reaffirm the 508’s leading edge position in the D-segment for executive sedans.
COLOUR HEAD-UP DISPLAY
Selected models of the 508 are fitted with a colour head-up display that projects essential driving information onto a glare-proof translucent polycarbonate pop-up panel that appears in the driver’s line of sight.
This conveniently provides information on vehicle speed, cruise control/speed limiter setting and satellite navigation instructions without the driver having to take his or her eyes off the road.
Both the inclination of the pop-up panel and the brightness of the readout can be adjusted. The panel itself can also be retracted if desired.
While main beams optimise the driver’s vision in poor lighting conditions, the risk of dazzling oncoming traffic means that the main beam function is often underutilised. The adaptive main beam system fitted to selected 508 models has been designed to optimise main beam use, and therefore enhance driver vision.
It employs an intelligent camera located on the back of the rear-view mirror to analyse aspects such as approaching or following vehicles, brightly lit urban areas and the like, and then automatically activates or deactivates the main beams accordingly.
The system is only offered in conjunction with the directional bi-Xenon headlights fitted as standard to the 508 GT.
These headlights feature a pure white-blue light that achieves three times the flux of a standard lamp, and vastly improves driver vision at night. The elliptical module uses a shutter frame to switch between main and dipped beam functions.
The directional function improves driver vision while cornering by turning the headlight module into the corner. The system is speed-adaptive, and adjusts according to vehicle speed in a range between 5 km/h and 160 km/h.
LED daytime running lights create an instantly recognisable visual ‘signature’ that is visible by day and night. The 508’ advanced approach to lighting even extends to interior ambient lighting, with tiny LEDs employed to provide a soft glow across the fascia, in the footwells, the door caps and even when entering the sedan.
NEO HALOGEN HEADLIGHTS
All 508 models except the flagship GT version are fitted with latest-generation halogen headlights equipped with New Efficiency Optics, or NEO. This technology allows the halogen bulb to improve its flux efficiency by 30 percent.
The result is a light pattern that is more uniform and more intense, which improves lighting range and thus enhances the driver’s vision. In the 508, the NEO technology is also attractively implemented, with a cat’s eye-like execution that contributes to the car’s overall design appeal.
The NEO halogen headlights are accompanied by static directional lighting, which optimises lateral visibility at speeds of up to 40 km/h, for instance at intersections in urban areas, or while parking.
The system reacts to the angle of the steering wheel, or use of the indicator, and activates the fog lamp on the side towards which the vehicle is being turned.
HANDS-FREE ACCESS AND STARTING
The 508 is the first Peugeot model to offer hands-free access and start-up on selected models. The system replaces a conventional key with an electronic unit that employs recognition technology to allow convenient unlocking and starting of the vehicle, without the need to insert a key, or to press any buttons on the key fob.
The electronic key can be detected by the car from a distance of 1,8 m and can be kept in a pocket of handbag. A start/stop button on the fascia to the right of the steering wheel is used to start up or stop the engine, while brushing a hand over the door handle suffices to lock or unlock the vehicle.
The system prohibits locking of the vehicle if the electronic key is left inside, while an audible alarm sounds if the driver exits the car with the key while the engine is still running.
FOUR-ZONE CLIMATE CONTROL
While dual-zone automatic air-conditioning is standard across the Peugeot 508 range, Allure and GT models feature another innovation: four-zone climate control. This allows individual occupants front and rear to adjust the temperature setting, air flow and distribution via dedicated controls for each seating position.
Even the dual-zone system fitted to the 508 Active models feature dedicated vents for rear occupants. However, the four-zone system employs an additional blower that augments the main system to ensure efficient airflow and temperature regulation for each zone.
In addition, front occupants can select between three temperature alignment modes. In addition to the conventional ‘Automatic’ mode, the system offers a ‘Soft’ mode, which employs a more gentle fan setting, and ‘Fast’, which boosts air flow to reach the selected temperature quicker.
AUTOMATIC ELECTRIC PARKING BRAKE
Allure and GT versions of the 508 are equipped with an electric parking brake which offers convenient operation. On start-up, the handbrake releases automatically when the driver pulls off, while the handbrake is automatically activated when the engine is switched off.
The handbrake can also be manually activated using the push-pull switch on the fascia, next to the start/stop button. It can also be manually deactivated, although this is only possible with the driver’s foot on the brake pedal.
Hill Assist is a standard 508 feature, regardless of model. When pulling off on an uphill gradient, it keeps the sedan stationary for approximately two seconds after the brake pedal has been released. The system operates on inclines of more than 3 percent, and is controlled by the ESP system, which maintains the brake pressure until the driver has released the brake pedal and is operating the accelerator.
WORLD IN PEUGEOT (WIP) SOUND
The new Peugeot 508 is equipped with a comprehensive sound and communication solution that combines a dual-tuner audio system with a front-loading CD player that is MP3-compatible, and six speakers. The speakers employ flat-speaker technology as employed by Denon and Marantz, allowing unusually compact dimensions.
The speaker array consists of two tweeters located in the upper part of the front door panels, two mid/bass drivers in the lower section of the front door panels, and two full-range speakers in the rear door panels.
The system is equipped with a minijack stereo auxiliary input and a USB connector, both located in the armrest, and designed to accommodate a variety of portable music players. The USB socket is compatible with iPod and iPhone devices, as well as USB flash drives.
WIP NAVIGATION PLUS
The WIP Nav Plus satellite navigation system is an added-cost option on 508 Allure models, and standard on the GT flagship. It consists of a seven-inch 16:9 high-resolution display offering perspective normal and split-frame views.
The Nav Plus system has been equipped with the relevant mapping data for South Africa, as well as neighbouring countries, including Namibia, Lesotho, Swaziland and Botswana.
It operates in conjunction with an uprated JBL 10-speaker sound system that links a 10-channel, 500 watt surround sound amplifier to a front-mounted MP3-comptatible CD player, a three-tuner receiver with two aerials to ensure crystal-clear reception, and RDS-based traffic information.
The speaker array locates a high-power 165 mm mid/bass driver, accompanied by a tweeter, in each of the 508’s front and rear door panels. In addition, a centre-channel speaker is situated in the upper-mid section of the fascia, while a 150 watt subwoofer is fitted in the luggage compartment.
Integrated Bluetooth connectivity allows the use of Bluetooth-equipped mobile phones in hands-free mode, as well as audio streaming from compatible smartphones. In addition, a stereo minijack auxiliary input, and an iPod-compatible USB socket, are also provided.
The system employs an advanced digital sound processing system developed by Arkamys to recreate a natural acoustic ambience. It allows the sound image to be projected specifically to the driving position, or to the cabin as a whole.
MEASUREMENT OF AVAILABLE SPACE
The Peugeot 508 GT can use its front and rear parking distance sensors to measure the available space in vacant parallel parking space, and to calculate whether the space is sufficient to accommodate the car.
This function operates in conjunction with the 508’s front and rear park assist, and is activated via a switch on the centre console.
OTHER SAFETY AND CONVENIENCE HIGHLIGHTS
The advanced systems and functions account for only some of the many comfort, convenience and safety systems featured on the various Peugeot 508 models.
In safety terms, the 508 offers a comprehensive array of active and passive safety systems. At the core of its active safety features is a latest-generation Bosch ESP 8.1 system, which combines the need for active safety intervention with retention of driving pleasure.
ESP 8.1 combines a number of core systems, all employing an array of sensors measuring aspects such as vehicle speed, individual wheel speed, lateral and longitudinal acceleration, and yaw rate.
Data from these sensors is used for the activation and control of the 508’s ABS anti-lock braking system, which also includes Emergency Brake Assist (EBA) and Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD), as well as Cornering Brake Control (CBC).
The ESP system also includes ASR traction control, FZR oversteer and understeer control, together with the Hill Assist function mentioned earlier, and the automatic release of the parking brake when pulling off.
Finally, the all 508 models are equipped with a multifunction steering wheel with intuitive controls designed to access a number of key systems and functions, including the cruise control, audio system and mobile phone.
Peugeot 508 owners will be able to personalise their car by choosing from an extensive and growing range of approved accessories.
These include different alloy wheel design in various sizes, a 230V/USB connector for recharging devices such as notebook computers and mobile phones, and a Wi-Fi On Board unit which allows wireless Internet access to be shared among the 508’s occupants.
The accessories offering also embraces tow bars, bicycle racks and carriers, streamlined roof stowage boxes, child seats, boot mats, protection carpets, and more.