Peugeot is a brand that has evolved and thrives in recent years. It’s a brand that offers one of the most diverses ranges of any car, from petrol superminis to performance hybrid cars and electric SUVs, it has lots to offer.

Recently, the French marque has expanded its line-up with a brand-new model, and one with no direct predecessor. Called the 408, it’s a striking new fastback that features SUV-inspired styling to really set it apart.

New Peugeot 408

While being impressed with the 408 on previous short drives, we’ve recently got the keys to our ‘own’ version for the next three months. Peugeot is only selling the 408 as a petrol or plug-in hybrid, and it’s the latter we’ve got, in the most powerful ‘225’ version. Pairing a 1.6-litre petrol engine with an electric motor for a combined 222bhp, the idea is you can potter around locally for up to a claimed 40 miles just on electricity.

Our car is the mid-range Allure Premium model – slotting between the Allure and GT. Standard equipment is pretty generous, incorporating 19-inch alloy wheels, adaptive cruise control, keyless entry, a full digital cockpit and Peugeot’s new 10-inch touchscreen.

Despite only having the 408 for a few weeks, we’ve clocked up more than 1,000 miles already, with the car already doing trips from North Yorkshire to Heathrow as well as to Nottingham and back, and plenty of local runs. I’ve done no ‘public’ charging, but I’m grateful to be able to charge at home, where it only takes a few hours to fully charge the batteries using a normal household socket.

New Peugeot 408

Even on journeys where I haven’t been able to charge the battery, it’s been averaging around 45mpg, which isn’t bad at all considering this is mostly motorway miles. The combined figures I’m seeing so far are some way off the figures Peugeot claim, but that’s no different to any plug-in hybrid unless you virtually complete all your miles on electric.

There’s been one stand-out factor that has stood out during my time with the 408 so far, though – comfort. Even on fairly large 19-inch alloy wheels, the ride is absolutely excellent, soaking up bumps remarkably well and being a fantastic car for longer journeys. The adaptive cruise control only helps to take further strain out of longer trips.

This feature is introduced in the Allure Premium and is our pick of the range for that reason, while also adding rear cross traffic alert (to stop you reversing into things) and blind spot monitoring. There is an optional ‘Drive Assist 2.0’ package, which adds semi-automatic lane change and speed assist, but we personally reckon it’s money best kept in your pocket.

We have plenty more lined up with our Peugeot 408 over the coming weeks and months, including testing its electric-running capabilities and practicality further. We’ll keep reporting back with our experience.



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