Peugeot 208 1.2-litre Active review

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29 January 2013

Peugeot 208 1.2-litre Active review

We turn the spotlight on the car world's newest and brightest stars as we ask the questions to which you want the answers. But there's only one question that really needs answering -- would you buy one?

What is it?

The entry level 1.2-litre three cylinder version of Peugeot's small hatch. One of a growing number of three cylinder tiddlers.

How much?

Priced from $18,490. If you don't like the sound of the three cylinder engine you can have a 1.6-litre four for another three grand.

What are competitors?

First and foremost the VW Up springs to mind, along with other three pots like the Suzuki Alto, Nissan Micra and Mitsubishi Mirage.

What's under the bonnet?

1.2-litre three pot. 60kW of power and 118Nm of torque. It's the most powerful of its competitors and has significantly more torque too.

How does it go?

0-100km/h in 13.9 seconds. Not the quickest kid on the block but a willing worker nevertheless.

Is it economical?

Takes premium. Paired with a five speed manual gearbox the 1.2-litre engine is good for 4.7 litres/100km. We were getting 6.2 during our tenure. The tendency with these small cars is to flog them which obviously impacts on fuel consumption.

Is it green?

Gets the magic 5 stars from the Govt's Green Vehicle Guide, same as a hybrid Prius, emiting 109g/km CO2.

Is it safe?

Predecessor was a five-star car but this one hasn't received a rating yet. Safety features include six airbags, stability and traction control, emergency brake assist, ABS with electronic brakeforce distribution, pre tensioning and force limiting front seat belts and automatic activation of hazard lights in an accident.

Is it comfortable?

Still in two minds about this. Lots of hard plastic and has smallish seats that you sit on rather than in. Those who like their seats back upright will find it especially hard to find the right position.

What's it like to drive?

Hated it a first, but once you get used to the way it works it's all good. Very light steering. Clutch can be tricky and the manual change has a long throw. Not happy down low and it responds well to lots of revs. Cruise is surprisingly standard along with a full size spare.

Is it value for money?

The price is keep enough to lure a few Euro centric buyers. Active models come with a large 7-inch touch screen that dominants the interior, Bluetooth and USB, body coloured mirrors, power windows with one touch function and mesh grille. Touchscreen is really a waste of space though without satnav.

Would we buy one?

Nah. The problem is that the VW Up is cheaper and goes better  which is saying something.

Peugeot 208 1.2-litre Active
Price: from $18,490
Warranty: 3 years/100,000km
Service Interval: 12 months/15,000km
Safety: 6 airbags, ABS, EBD, EBA, TC
Crash rating: 5 stars
Engine: 1.2-litre 3-cyl petrol, 60kW/118Nm
Transmission: 5-speed manual; front-wheel drive
Thirst: 4.7L/100km; 95RON; 109g/km CO2
Dimensions: 3.9m (L), 1.7m (W), 1.5m (H)
Weight: 1050kg
Spare: full-size

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Published 29 January 2013

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