2021 Peugeot 2008 GT Sport long term review
2021 Peugeot 2008 GT Sport long-term review: Introduction
As seen on drive.com.au
We love the styling of the new 2021 Peugeot 2008, an aggressive and stylish take on the small-SUV segment. The 2008 (pronounced two-thousand-and-eight and never two-double-oh-eight – quelle horreur) slots in nicely into the French brand’s SUV line-up that also includes the slightly larger 3008 and the seven-seat 5008.
And proving just how important SUVs are to not just Peugeot, but every carmaker, those three models represent the bulk of sales – 65.5 per cent – for the French brand in Australia.
The small-SUV segment continues to boom in Australia, accounting for 14.2 per cent of all new car sales locally, with around 27,000 more sales than this time last year.
Fitting, then, we spend some time behind the wheel of one of the newest and freshest members of the segment.
Wish a warm bienvenue to our long-term 2021 Peugeot 2008 GT Sport, the $43,990 range-topper that will call Drive home for the next few months as we explore its French quirks in a more wholesome manner than we normally can over a week-long garage test.
Our long-termer comes fitted with an optional panoramic roof ($1990) and a premium lick of paint, Vertigo Blue metallic, a $1050 option. As tested? $47,030 (plus on-roads) or around $51,500 to $52,500 drive-away give or take depending on your postcode. That places the 2008 firmly in the premium small-SUV category where it does battle with the Audi Q2, Lexus UX200, Mini Countryman and Volvo XC40.
The Peugeot 2008 certainly packs plenty of punch in terms of standard equipment. Highlights include LED headlights and tail-lights, 18-inch alloy wheels finished in black, nappa leather seats with front-seat heating and driver's massaging function, a 10-inch infotainment system, wireless phone charging and ambient lighting.
Add in push-button start, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring, DAB+ radio, satellite navigation, and a decent suite of safety tech headlined by high-speed autonomous braking (up to 140km/h) with pedestrian (up to 60km/h) and cyclist (up to 80km/h) detection as well as low-light capability. There’s also speed sign recognition, lane-keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring and adaptive cruise control.
|Key details||2021 Peugeot 2008 GT Sport|
|Engine||1.2-litre, three-cylinder turbo petrol|
|Power||114kW @ 5500rpm|
|Torque||240Nm @ 1750rpm|
|Drive type||Front-wheel drive|
|Power to weight ratio||90.2kW/t|
|Price (as tested)||$47,030|
Inside, the 2008 GT Sport sees the debut of the French brand’s striking 3D digital instrument display, which uses several layers of Thin Film Transistor (TFT) to display information in three dimensions. While it sounds gimmicky, it’s actually effective in displaying critical information in the foreground, such as crash-avoidance alerts. And it looks really cool. We’re fans.
We’re also fans of the entirely charming 1.2-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine under the 2008 GT Sport’s bonnet. It’s good for a decent 114kW at 5500rpm and 240Nm at 1750rpm. It’s mated to an eight-speed conventional automatic transmission, the combination working together to propel the 1287kg (kerb weight) Peugeot 2008 from 0–100km/h in 8.7 seconds. Feels about right, too, after our initial weeks with the car.
Those first few weeks have already highlighted some aspects we love, and a couple of quirks we don’t. It’ll be interesting to see if in the fullness of time whether those quirks iron themselves out as we become accustomed to the chic little Frenchy.
The drivetrain combination is delightful, the characterful 1.2-litre three-pot eliciting an intoxicating thrum in only the way a decent three-cylinder can. It growls and it purrs and, in tandem with the smooth eight-speed auto, offers plenty of punch for most situations.
It has, so far, erred on the side of thirsty. Despite Peugeot’s 6.1L/100km consumption claim, after around 600km in the little Pug, we’re seeing an indicated 8.9L/100km. That’s pretty heavy for a 1.2-litre turbo three. We’ll add the caveat that the bulk of those 600km were spent in the 2008’s natural environment, the streets and traffic of the inner city and the suburbs. Anticipate that number to drop once some highway running is thrown into the mix.
On the flipside, features that have previously annoyed, such as the small yet elegant steering wheel, are starting to feel more at home. The cruise-control functions, located on a stalk out of sight and down low on the steering column, continue to confound, however. A minor quibble, and one that should with time work itself out.
What the 2008 does well, really well, is stand out in a crowd of small SUVs. My own neighbourhood is the spiritual home of the segment, with an armada of small SUVs from cheap and cheerful MG ZSs to high-end soft-roaders from Audi, Mercedes, Lexus and BMW filling car parks and side streets like an invasion. And yet, it’s the striking 2008 that garners a lot of attention.
Maybe it’s that luscious Vertigo Blue paint contrasted by a sea of black highlights like the grille, wheels and badges. Or maybe because it’s so scarce on our roads, more’s the pity, because the Peugeot 2008 GT Sport quite possibly deserves a wider audience than it enjoys.
Over the coming months we’ll see if our initial impressions about the 2008 stack up over an extended period. Certainly, those first few weeks have presented us with an enjoyable time behind the (small) wheel. An engaging, characterful, reasonably practical and oh-so-stylish take on the formula.
|At a glance||2021 Peugeot 2008 GT Sport|
|Fuel consumption (claimed combined)||6.1L/100km|
|Fuel consumption (on test)||8.9L/100km|
|Fuel tank size||44L|
|Tow rating||1200kg (braked)|
|ANCAP safety rating||Five star (tested 2019)|
|Warranty||Five years/unlimited km|
|Colour as tested||Vertigo Blue|
|Options as tested|
|Competitors||Audi Q2, Lexus UX200, Volvo XC40|