PEUGEOT 208: OVERVIEW







Published by Gerald Ferreira Date: October 5, 2012
Categories: Peugeot, Peugeot 208

A stylish compact hatch that marks a true generation leap 

  • All-new 208 regenerates proud legacy of 206 and 207
  • Renewed, athletic styling with more sophisticated silhouette
  • Reduced front and rear overhangs, weight cut by up to 173 kg
  • Improved packaging, roomier interior and more luggage capacity
  • Redesigned instruments and controls with intuitive touch screen
  • New-generation three-cylinder power, efficiency and low emissions
  • Engaging road-holding, matched to impeccable safety

Peugeot 208

Peugeot South Africa is set to regenerate perceptions of the compact hatchback segment with the launch of the all-new 208.

The result of the most ambitious new model programme in the marque’s long and illustrious history, the launch of the new Peugeot 208 represents a true generation leap that sets entirely new benchmarks for this extremely competitive segment.

“With the new 208, Peugeot enters a new era,” says Francis Harnie, managing director of Peugeot SA.

“It offers the most advanced design, the most sophisticated technology and the most efficient packaging yet seen in the subcompact category. The new 208 combines modernity with the spirit of the 206 and the practicality of the 207.”

CONCEPT

The new Peugeot 208 is based on the PSA Group’s Platform 1, and was developed from the outset to produce a new model that is compact, light, spacious and aerodynamic.

With a reduced front overhang (60 mm less, compared to the 207) and a 10 mm shorter rear overhang, the new 208 benefits from more compact proportions, greater agility and improved everyday driving practicality.

An overriding design theme throughout the development phase was the concerted reduction of weight in the interests of fuel efficiency, passive safety and dynamic performance.

Notably, the 208 weighs up to 173 kg less than the 207 with the entry-level petrol engine of equivalent power – a feat which allows a kerb mass of as low as 975 kg!

Nevertheless, with an identical wheelbase to the 207, together with the use of more compact seat backs and overall design optimisation, the 208 provides significantly more space for rear occupants.

The increase in interior space also extends to the boot, where luggage capacity has been increased by 15 litres to a total of 311 litres.

EXTERIOR DESIGN

The front-end styling of the 208 unveils a new, particularly charismatic ‘face’. Its typically feline expression is contemporary, arresting and refined. The shape of the headlights is emphasised by the LED elements and the light guides (depending on model), while complimenting the floating design of the grille.

The shape of the 208 exudes an overall sense of aerodynamic cohesion. The bold grille sets the tone for a virtual, longitudinal style line that extends along the bonnet’s centre line, bites into the top of the windscreen, leaves its mark in the centre of the roof and continues to the very end of the boot aperture.

The boomerang-shaped tail lights aren’t only a further expression of the 208’s technological sophistication, but also play an aesthetic role by incorporating a distinctive light signature with three illuminated ‘claws’ – a further acknowledgement of the brand’s felines styling traditions.

INTERIOR EXECUTION

The interior of the Peugeot 208 once again breaks established codes to offer superior levels of driving ergonomics, intuitive use and tactile appeal. In the process, it creates a more intimate relationship between car and driver.

The instruments and controls reflect a completely new design approach that complements the 208’s outstanding quality and attention to detail.

The position of the instrument panel has been raised to bring it closer to the driver’s natural field of vision. It combines classy, clearly executed analogue dials with a multi-function digital display, on which the speed is always visible.

At the same time, the diameter of the steering wheel has been reduced to make manoeuvring easier, while enhancing steering feel and feedback.

Further emphasising the theme of sophistication that underpins the new 208 is a large 7-inch (18 cm) touch-screen colour display, fitted to the higher-spec 208 models. The screen features carefully designed graphics and intuitive positioning and operation.

This semi-floating display allows easy access to the various multimedia functions, including the FM/AM radio, the Bluetooth telephony system, and access to music files via USB or Bluetooth audio streaming.

Day-to-day practicality has been enhanced with numerous useful storage compartments, including the deep recess in front of the gear lever, and generous door pockets.

Interior acoustic and vibration comfort has also been succinctly addressed, creating a refined, sophisticated and upmarket interior ambience that is in perfect harmony with the rest of this trend-setting new model.

CHASSIS, SUSPENSION AND DYNAMICS

With the aim of establishing it as the benchmark in its segment, the Peugeot 208 offers exceptional stability and dynamic appeal, without compromising on comfort.

The newcomer employs a pseudo-MacPherson front suspension, in combination with a deformable cross-member rear suspension. This set-up, in conjunction with the impressive overall reduction in weight, contributes as much to the 208’s superlative road-holding as it does to comfort and ride refinement.

Further enhancing the driving experience is a new brushless-type electric power steering system. It was developed specifically for the 208, taking into account the new car’s particular combination of balance and weight.

The result is a steering system that provides a precise action with ample feedback, while also allowing easy manoeuvrability at low speeds.

Across the range, braking is handled by an ABS-assisted braking system that is augmented by electronic brake force distribution  (EBD) and emergency brake assist (EBA).

ENGINES, DRIVETRAIN AND PERFORMANCE

A new-generation three-cylinder petrol engine makes its debut in the Peugeot 208, achieving a true breakthrough in consumption and emissions, while delivering impressive performance.

The new 1.2 VTi engine has been designed to both compact and lightweight, and is as much as 21 kg lighter than an equivalent-output four-cylinder engine. It uses an aluminium alloy cylinder block and head, with the exhaust manifold integrated into the cylinder head. The power unit also benefits from numerous high-tech features, including variable valve timing (VVT).

Accordingly, the 1.2 VTi is credited with 60 kW of power at 5 750 r/min, and an impressive 118 Nm of torque at just 2 750 r/min. Fuel efficiency is one of this unit’s strongest selling points. It is capable of a combined cycle fuel consumption of just 4,5 litres/100 km, with a corresponding emissions rating of 104 g of CO2 per km.

The range-topping 208 model at launch is powered by a 1,6-litre four-cylinder engine that produces 88 kW at 6 000 r/min and 160 Nm at 4 250 r/min. Combined cycle fuel consumption is rated at 5,8 l/100 km, and an impressively low CO2 emissions figure of 134 g/km.

Both engines are matched to a five-speed manual transmission, driving the front wheels.

ENVIRONMENT

Aside from the significant reduction in overall weight, the Peugeot 208 is a pioneer in terms of eco-responsible design. Some 25 percent of the 170 kg of polymers employed by the hatchback comprise so-called ‘green materials, thereby heralding a new level of eco-friendly construction.

In particular, the rear bumper is made entirely from recycled materials, which is a world first. The radiator frame and fan are also produced from recycled materials.

Furthermore, the optimised design benefits lower fuel consumption, with a drag coefficient of as low a Cd 0,29, which positions the 208 as amongst the best in its segment.

MODEL LINE-UP

The all-new 208  model range consists of three derivatives, all combining exceptional features with value.

The entry-level 208 1.2 VTi Access incorporates dual front airbags, air-conditioning, an alarm/immobiliser system, central locking, electric front windows and an audio system with USB and Bluetooth connectivity.

As the mid-range model, the 208 1.2 VTi Active boasts four airbags, 15-inch alloy wheels, the digital touch-screen multimedia system, electric windows all round, electric folding mirrors, front fog lamps, and cruise control with a speed limiter.

The range-topping 208 1.6 VTi Allure gains the upmarket edge with a full complement of six airbags, 16-inch alloys, automatic headlights and rain-sensing windscreen wipers, dual-zone automatic climate control, a leather-trimmed steering wheel, refrigerated glovebox and tinted windows.

PRICING

  • 208 1.2 VTi Access R154 900
  • 208 1.2 VTi Active R169 900
  • 208 1.6 VTi Allure R189 900

The retail price includes a five-year/60 000 km Premium Plan, and a three-year/100 000 km warranty.