Peugeot 508 GT 2011 review
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The 508 replaces two models for Peugeot — the 407 and long in the tooth 607.
There's a sedan and touring wagon as well as the upmarket GT (also a sedan). The confronting "frog mouth" grille has been discarded in favour of a more conservative look this time around.
The idea is that the car will appeal to a wider range of people and hopefully have a longer shelf life. But, just to confuse matters, there is in fact a new 408 model but it's actually a stretched version of the 308 sedan — and it's coming here too.
Explore the 2011 Peugeot 508 range
Nice package. Looks the goods. Plenty of prestige. Diesel economy and plenty of kit from the French car that seems to be getting back on track. To an already extensive equipment list, the GT adds head up display, 18 inch alloys, directional bi-xenon lights, automatic high beam and memory settings for the driver's seat. Note however the trim is a combination of cloth and leather rather than full leather.
The 2.2-litre 150kW/450Nm engine produces the same amount of power but slightly more torque than the twin-turbo 2.7 litre V6 diesel that it replaces.
The coloured head-up display is projected on to a small screen which sits on top of the dash rather than on the windscreen itself. There's four-zone climate airconditioning with rear controls, automatic high beam, hands-free entry and keyless start, automatic electric parking brake, drivers electrically-operated lumbar and a JBL audio system.
The parking sensor system also includes a features that determines whether a parking is large enough to accommodate the car. Also comes with Bluetooth and full iPod connectivity.
The 508 shares the same platform and power trains as the gorgeous Citroen C5 with which it shares a production line in Rennes, France. It's 116mm longer than a 407 and 110mm shorter than the 607 sedan, but actually has a longer wheelbase than either. It's also about 77kg lighter than a 407 and the longer wheelbase translates to 53mm more legroom.
Peugeot claims benchmark acoustics for this car and we're inclined to agree. This has to have one of the quietest interiors that we've driven outside of a top end Lexus.
Contributing to the result are is an acoustic front windscreen to filter noise from outside, hydro-elastic suspension mounts to reduce noise and vibration coming from the road and an active damper on the front axle to reduce engine vibration.
Comes a five-star safety rating and all the gear, including six airbags, stability control and anti-lock brakes. The bi-xenon lights swivel when cornerning and a camera monitors the surrounds switching on high beam as soon as possible at night.
Forget the letters GT. They're a bit of a furphy and Peugeot may have been a bit ambitious. When most people think GT they associate the term with fast, expensive sports cars. The 508 is not. It does however offer an easy, relaxed driving experience true to the strict definition of the term, being a high-performance luxury automobile designed for long-distance driving.
The dash from 0-100km/h takes 8.2 seconds and with a 72-litre fuel tank it's good for a low 5.7 litres/100km. Apart from the extra power of the larger engine, you can actually feel the difference in the suspension's set-up. The GT feels more supple, more communicative with better steering response and better turn in in to corners. It's also less likely to be unsettled by poor roads.
Like the car. Just not sure whether it's worth the extra $10,000 asking price over the 2.0-litre sedan.
Range and Specs
|Active 1.6 EHDi||1.6L, Diesel, 6 SP AUTO||$7,860 – 12,990||2011 Peugeot 508 2011 Active 1.6 EHDi Pricing and Specs|
|Active 1.6T||1.6L, PULP, 6 SP AUTO||$7,200 – 11,110||2011 Peugeot 508 2011 Active 1.6T Pricing and Specs|
|Allure 1.6T||1.6L, PULP, 6 SP AUTO||$7,700 – 11,880||2011 Peugeot 508 2011 Allure 1.6T Pricing and Specs|
|Allure HDi||2.0L, Diesel, 6 SP AUTO||$8,800 – 11,999||2011 Peugeot 508 2011 Allure HDi Pricing and Specs|