What is it?
This sleek-looking executive car has been key to attracting new drivers to the Peugeot brand.
It’s available as both a fastback and a more practical SW estate model we’re looking at here, but each major on style and quality. Peugeot is now back with an update for the 508, but is it a car worth considering?
The current-generation 508 really helped to pave the way for a new Peugeot design language at its launch in 2018, and the same is true with this facelift model. Featuring a striking new front grille design and bold lighting signature, it will continue to get this Peugeot noticed out on the road.
Elsewhere, there’s the option of an additional plug-in hybrid powertrain, while the cabin benefits from a new 10-inch touchscreen running on Peugeot’s latest software.
What’s under the bonnet?
Peugeot has removed diesel from the 508 line-up as part of this update, meaning there’s now just the option of a petrol engine or pair of plug-in hybrids.
The petrol unit is a 128bhp 1.2-litre engine, which isn’t a lot for a vehicle of this size, and can feel a bit underpowered at times.
Above this are the two plug-in hybrids, which each use a 1.6-litre petrol engine. The standard car is front-wheel-drive and develops 222bhp, but Peugeot offers a ‘Sport Engineered’ model, which gets a second electric motor that takes the power up to 355bhp, and allows for a 0-60mph time of just five seconds. Peugeot also claims an electric range of around 35 miles, which brings the possibility of very low running costs if the car can be plugged in regularly.
What’s it like to drive?
The Peugeot 508 SW is a strong performer behind the wheel. It feels sportier to drive than SUVs because of its low seating position and it’s very grippy through corners, feeling agile for what is quite a good-sized estate car. The ride is comfortable too, while strong refinement means the 508 is an ideal motorway car for covering big distances.
The Peugeot Sport Engineered (PSE) car takes things up another level, too. With almost triple the power of the standard 1.2-litre petrol, performance is a strong point, but Peugeot has managed to make it feel noticeably more lively, while the traction from the four-wheel-drive is impressive.
How does it look?
Design has always been a strong point of the Peugeot 508, and this latest model only builds on the stunning design of the predecessor. The striking new frameless front grille and triple claw lighting signature are two of the most noticeable changes on this latest car, with new LEDs rounding off the rear.
The SW in particular looks especially cool and is arguably the best-looking estate car you can buy. If you want something a bit sportier, the PSE brings a more aggressive bodykit, larger alloy wheels and lime-coloured styling accents.
What’s it like inside?
Peugeot’s quality continues to improve, and the 508’s cabin in particular feels upmarket, with a range of high-quality materials being used throughout. There’s the firm’s trademark small steering wheel, large touchscreen with toggle switches, which are all quite different to other cars on the market.
Though the 508 SW puts a strong focus on style, it’s still a roomy estate car. The boot measures 530 litres with the seats up, or 1,780 litres with them folded. Rear space isn’t exceptionally generous, so you might want to look elsewhere if maximum spaciousness is required.
What’s the spec like?
There are three versions of the 508 available – Allure, GT and the flagship Peugeot Sport Engineered.
All come with plenty of equipment, such as dual-zone climate control, Matrix LED headlights, keyless entry, a 10-inch touchscreen and a large 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster.
The GT brings adaptive cruise control, a 360-degree camera system and heated front seats, while the Peugeot Spot Engineered comes with Nappa leather and Alcantara sports seats, active suspension and a Focal sound system, on top of the array of performance-based changes.
The Peugeot 508 SW’s latest updates have only improved it further, giving it an even bolder design, more efficient hybrid engines and subtle interior tweaks.
Its style is enough to make you consider it on its own, but combined with an upmarket interior and excellent driving manners, it continues to be an excellent alternative to more traditional premium brands.