- Plenty of engine choice in the 3008
- Automatic gearboxes in the most powerful
- Lower-powered engines the best
Four engines are available in the 3008 with 130hp to 180hp. Fastest are a 180hp diesel and 180hp petrol, with more economical 130hp diesel and petrol engines lower down the range.
Peugeot 3008 PureTech petrol engines
If you want a petrol 3008, you’ve got a choice of two. First up is a 1.2-litre three-cylinder unit named PureTech 130. As the name suggests, it offers 130hp and is a great fit in the 3008 with a useful 230Nm of torque available.
The engine is smooth and powerful and feels well suited to the car. It’ll complete the benchmark 0-62mph sprint in 10.8 seconds and is capable of reaching a 117mph top speed.
It makes the most sense to those on a budget or those with more to spend – as long as you steer clear of the power-sapping automatic gearbox that’s available with this engine.
There's also a PureTech 180, which uses a 1.6-litre turbocharged unit paired exclusively with an EAT8 automatic transmission. This version will sprint from 0-62mph in 8.0 seconds, making it the quickest of the 3008 line-up in this regard.
However, with a torque figure of 250Nm and that automatic gearbox, it doesn't always feel the pokiest when you need to get up to speed on the motorway, for example.
Peugeot 3008 BlueHDi diesel engines
The 3008 diesel engine line-up was simplified with the introduction of a new 1.5-litre unit producing 130hp and 300Nm of torque - replacing the BlueHDi 100, 120 and 150hp units in one fell swoop.
In six-speed manual form, this diesel will complete the 0-62mph dash in 10.8 seconds, while the EAT8 automatic version is slower at 11.5 seconds.
It's a smooth and refined unit that feels punchy in manual form, feeling lively enough for most situations, whether it's around town or sitting on the motorway. It feels an excellent alternative to the PureTech 130 petrol if you spend more time undertaking long journeys.
At the top of the tree is a 180hp BlueHDi diesel available exclusively with an automatic gearbox. While it has ample power on paper, in reality the automatic gearbox saps power and makes it feel much slower than you’d expect.
A chunky 400Nm torque figure provides plenty of punch, but you’ll need patience as the gearbox decides what to do if you put your foot down. It makes its 0-62mph time of 8.9 seconds feel more stressful than you’d expect, too.
Engines no longer available
Before the PureTech 180 came along, the most powerful petro lavailable was THP 165. It’s a 1.6-litre turbo petrol pushing out 165hp and 240Nm of torque.
It’ll sprint from 0-62mph in 8.9 seconds, but it’s only available with an EAT6 automatic gearbox. It can make it feel more lethargic on the move and, as a result, it doesn’t feel that much quicker than the PureTech 130, however it’ll reach higher top speed of 128mph.
For the diesels, the newer 1.5-litre BlueHDi replaced both the 100hp and 120hp versions of the 1.6-litre BlueHDi units.
Kicking off the diesel line-up was a 1.6-litre BlueHDi unit – only available in entry-level Active trim. It offers up 100hp and 254Nm of torque, but it’s the slowest of the bunch. You’ll need patience as it takes 13.1 seconds to get to 62mph from a standstill, and will top out at 108mph.
Next up was a 120hp version of the same unit. It feels much more flexible thanks to 300Nm of torque. It makes the 3008 feel much nippier and more at home on the motorway, too.
The 0-62mph time drops to 11.2 seconds, while top speed increases to 117mph. This engine is available with a choice of six-speed manual or six-speed automatic gearboxes. Stick with the manual though, it’s much slicker and nicer to drive than the indecisive auto.
Providing another jump in power was a 2.0-litre BlueHDi 150 with 150hp and 370Nm of torque. The 0-62mph sprint time drops again – down to 9.6 seconds – and it’ll get up to 129mph.
- The way the 3008 handles varies between models
- Lighter engines feel most sprightly
- Automatic gearboxes limit fun factor
As with performance, this is a tale of two halves. The 130hp Puretech petrol model feels light and nimble around corners, with the 120hp diesel just a step behind. The much heavier 180hp diesel feels unwieldy and heavy in comparison, though most drivers won’t want for more grip with any 3008.
The 165hp petrol may weigh the same as 120hp diesel, but the automatic gearbox detracts from its driving experience, making for jerky progress around corners, whether you leave the gearbox to its own devices or take manual control using the paddles mounted on the steering wheel. As a result, it’s the less satisfying machine to drive.
The feel of the steering varies by model, too, though all feature a tiny steering wheel, which is flattened on the top and bottom. While this may mimic a Formula 1 wheel, it is incongruous in a road car, as unlike on the track where the wheel barely turns between full left and right.
In the 3008 the irregular shape makes corners a frustrating affair. It is much harder to adjust your grip when turning as you don’t know exactly which bit of the wheel you’ll get.
The lighter models provide a reasonably good sense of control through the wheel, though the steering felt a little less intuitive in the more powerful models. Despite the small wheel it also feels like you have to turn this more than expected to make bends, making the squashed shape of the wheel more irritating.
A Sport mode for the steering is also available, and while this adds weight, it can feel artificial, giving you less sense of connection with the front tyres, especially with the heavier engines fitted. All cars are easy to manoeuvre around town, however.
- Interior is the 3008’s show-stopper
- Striking design and plush materials
- Won’t suit all driving positions, though
Peugeot is not a brand famed for offering tactile, high-quality interiors in its cars of old, but the 3008 is a big step above older models – with unusual wood and fabric trims on offer and a striking overall interior layout.
While you won’t mistake the cabin for a Volkswagen, it does feel well built and you can spot design cues paying homage to current Jaguar, Audi and Mercedes models. As a result, the 3008 offers a strong feel-good factor for the price.
The small steering wheel, with instruments viewed over it, may be an acquired taste, but the cabin mostly works well. The Virtual Cockpit-style digital dials can display many different combinations of information from traditional analogue gauges to a pared-down setting which shows a digital speedometer and not much else.
What is the Peugeot 3008's virtual cockpit?
Sat-nav instructions can also be overlaid on these, though we found it irritating that directions completely obscured the rev counter in the conventional display – a key dial in a car with an engine as quiet as the 130hp petrol. With modes selected with a roller switch on the steering wheel, it’s very easy to jump from one mode to another on the move.
The touchscreen media system, meanwhile, is leagues more usable than the system in other Peugeots, such as the 308 hatchback, which has an unresponsive screen and frustratingly convoluted controls. The screen is also quite large compared with many similarly priced cars, such as the Renault Kadjar.
There are very few physical controls across the cabin, bar a line of seven identically sized silver switches and six buttons below these. Despite the slick design of these, the fact they all feel the same and have small logos on them makes them unnecessarily difficult to differentiate when driving.
- Comfort levels won’t disappoint
- Some models have stiffer seats than others
- Suspension soaks up majority of bumps
Style plays a big part in the 3008’s interior with black, textured, aged oak trim on GT models and fabric dashboard detailing on some Allure cars.
This style does come with a cost, though. The fabric seats with a ridge going down the centre in Allure cars may look good, but these aren’t the most comfortable, with the ridged fabric digging into front passenger’s back somewhat.
The suspension could also be a bit more yielding on rough, bumpy roads too. While the car shrugs off undulations very well, bad bumps and ruts in the road do make themselves felt more than many drivers might expect from a car with off-road pretensions.
Space levels are good, however. Avoid the glass roof and passengers in both rows should have plenty of head and legroom, with the flat rear floor leaving lots of foot room for three to sit alongside each other.
The high floor in comparison with the seat base does mean that taller people may feel like they’re sitting on a small child’s chair, with their legs slightly too high compared with the rest of their body.
Specify the glass roof and headroom is a little on the tight side for taller passengers, but it does add a nice amount of light into the cabin, especially on models with dark rooflining.
Engine refinement is a bit of a mixed bag. The 130hp petrol motor is very smooth and quiet, emitting an eager thrum when worked hard. Both 120hp and 180hp diesels fail to hide their choice of fuel – especially the automatic-only 180hp unit – but are adequately hushed for the class.
The 165hp petrol tested, meanwhile, was a little more coarse than expected – especially considering how muted the smaller petrol engine is. Opt for a model with wide tyres and quite a lot of road and tyre noise is audible, though narrower-tyred models are much quieter. Wind noise, on the other hand, is never really audible.