Peugeot 308 SW: The joy of specs

  • Our new estate was the flagship trim until recently
  • Well-appointed with extras over previous hatch
  • Overall it weighs in at £26,320 including options

Until recently, Feline was the top-drawer specification level in 308 SW hierarchy, but now its place at the Peugeot pinnacle has been usurped by a pair of sportier-sounding newcomers.

Crowning the range now is the GT trim, powered by a pair of lustier petrol and diesel engines, while the Feline itself has been replaced for the 2015 model year by the slightly-less-sporty GT Line.

This is always a dilemma for new car buyers – when will the model you’re buying be replaced and will it have a negative effect on resale values? While there wasn’t much danger of the 308 SW range going by the wayside anytime soon – after all, the estate version of the 308 hatchback only went on sale in spring 2014 – trim level futures are harder to predict.

Anyway, Feline this one is and it's equipped with a 2-litre BlueHDi 150 diesel engine - it's no hardship that I'll be driving it into 2015. Particularly as this one’s got some extra-cost toys complementing the already high standard of equipment.

Slip inside the spacious cabin and the first thing you’ll notice is full Nappa leather upholstery, in place of the leather and Alcantara combination found on the hatch. For what’s essentially a mainstream car, it feels silky, supple and of a quality normally associated with more expensive, premium brands.

The light-coloured stitching embroidered into it offers a visual contrast without looking naff, while the rear seat offers taller passengers more space thanks to the glazed roof panel extending further back.

Back in the front and the pair of comfy chairs are equipped with winter-defying three-level heating elements. How smug was I on the first hard frost of winter knowing my cheeks would be suitably de-chilled shortly after touchdown. Try not to ponder on that image too long.

They have another party trick too – a massage function. I have to confess, I’m not a fan of these massaging seat systems in any car, but the Peugeot’s can be set so they’re not too intrusive, though that somewhat defeats the point somewhat.

All those seat-related shenanigans add £1,200 to the 308 SW’s £24,145 list price. Also fitted to KN14YTB is the City Park pack at a much more reasonable £400. The name’s something of a misnomer as it’s not particularly city-specific, but it does combine a self-parking function and a blind-spot monitor, useful for motorway driving.

Activating the self-park function, for both ‘bay’ and parallel parking, involves hitting a button on the right of the dashboard, selecting the parking method required on screen, flicking the indicator to the required side to ‘look’ for a space and then follow the on-screen instructions, reversing and driving forwards as directed.

It works too, so far proving idiot - okay, me - proof. I’ve yet to try the function where it drives out of a parallel parking bay itself though.

On more open roads flickering amber lights within the door mirror glass alert you to when the car’s sensed a vehicle that might be in your blind spot. These systems are designed to supplement your driving, so maintaining focus on anything approaching from behind in your mirrors and looking over your shoulder mustn’t be simply forgotten.

For the additional convenience benefits the City Park pack is decent value, particularly if you’re not a confident parker and want to have greater reassurance than the standard parking sensors and reversing camera provide.

Finally, the 308 SW’s bodywork’s finished in Tornado Grey – a £525 option for metallic paint. I won’t pretend the hue would be near the top of my favourites, but the shimmering finish brings out the subtle nuances in the Peugeot’s styling. Just go a few shades bolder.

All in it weighs in at £26,320. Not an inconsiderable amount for a medium-sized family estate. Over the next couple of updates I’ll be considering the 308 SW’s practicality and frugality to see if the price feels justifiable.

Total mileage: 3,330 miles (started at 2,457)
Average mpg
: 47.0mpg (calculated)