4 out of 5 4.0
Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

Stylish saloon that's both rare and good value

Peugeot 508 Saloon (11-18) - rated 4 out of 5
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At a glance

New price £18,965 - £34,285
Used price £1,530 - £18,295
Fuel economy
Not tested to latest standards
View pre-2017 economy specs
Road tax cost £0 - £170
Insurance group 19 - 37 How much is it to insure?

PROS

  • Quality interior
  • Good mix of petrol and diesel engines
  • Fun to drive

CONS

  • Exterior design is bland
  • No cubbies in central console

Peugeot 508 Saloon rivals

Written by Simon McBride on

Is the Peugeot 508 saloon any good?

The new Peugeot 508 has replaced the 407 and with it comes a better quality interior and a more mature look. The 407 was famed for its quirky front end but it was a little like marmite – you either liked or hated it.

The 508 is more conservative and that should appeal to business drivers who will make up to 80% of its sales mix. Peugeot has come up trumps and this looks like a really viable choice in this sector. Since the arrival of the stylish RCZ coupe and the 3008 the French car maker has been going from strength to strength in terms of building good looking cars that are good to drive.

Facelift in 2013

There was a minor facelift in 2013 which was the introduction of more equipment on several of the trim levels. Although there's also a small price hike for said trims, they aim to offer better value that ever for both private and fleet buyers.

Practicality

Boot space is ample: the 508 gives you 108 litres more space with the rear seats in place than the outgoing 407, with 545 litres of loadroom. It is impressive (this includes a hidden compartment with up to 48 litres under the boot floor). Fold the rear seats and the loadroom increase to 1,581 litres and the bonus is that you have a flat floor. But how does the 508 compare with its rivals?

Reasonably well. The Ford Mondeo has a loadspace of 528 litres, while the Passat has a space of 565 litres with the seats in place. The more prestigious BMW 3-Series trails with just 460 litres of luggage space when the seats are in place.Your goodies won’t slide around the boot if you choose the optional luggage net.

Safety

There is no Euro NCAP rating but the 407 received full marks when it was tested and we expect the 508 to perform similarly well. Standard safety kit includes driver and front passenger airbags, side and curtain airbags. Active safety systems such as ABS, electronic brakeforce distribution, emergency braking assistance, electronic stability programme, dynamic stability control and cornering brake control are also included.

Stability control also includes hill assist with intelligent traction control. Isofix fixtures with three-point attachments are in the rear and the front seats have new curved head restraints designed to reduce whiplash.

Interior

You get an upmarket feel in the 508 and it is a big leap forward from the 407. The build quality has improved and the materials are of a much higher standard. The dash is clean but simple and the head-up display makes a great deal of sense in terms of safety.

This ride is excellent and although it is firm it's perfect for long-distance journeys and should be attractive for its target market - company car drivers who spend a lot of their time chugging up an down Britain's motorways and A-roads. The 508 is one of the most refined cars in the sector and along with the impressive ride quality, wind noise, road roar and engine noise has been kept to a minimum.

A special sound-proofing windscreen has helped to filter out the noise and dampers on the front axle have reduced engine vibration. The seats are well supported and the sides have enough bolstering to keep you nicely hemmed in when cornering. The head-up display, which means you can check your speed without taking your eyes of the road, is also very useful.

MPG and running costs

The most frugal engine in the 508 line-up is 1.6-litre 112bhp engine mated to the six-speed EGC manual gearbox. It has a claimed average fuel economy of 64.2mpg. This engine is also the greenest on the 508 (see below). Servicing costs are competitive.

Fleet managers will be rubbing their hands with glee. The 508 with the 1.6-litre diesel 112bhp engine mated to the six-speed EGC manual gearbox emits just 109g/km of CO2.

Peugeot used to have a reputation for poor reliability but, recently, with the RCZ and the 3008, it has improved drastically on this front. The 508 should be able to keep this good run of form going: the materials are of good quality and have a solid feel to them. Hopefully the electric niggles that blighted former generations of Peugeots are in the past.

Engines

A strong engine line-up is available for UK customers from launch with a mix of two petrol units and five diesel power plants. The petrol engine range includes a 1.6-litre 120bhp with an electrically controlled manual gearbox (ECG) and a 156bhp 1.6-litre with a six-speed manual gearbox.

The diesel range features five choices: a 1.6-litre 112bhp with five-speed manual, a 1.6-litre 112bhp with stop/start and an electrically controlled manual, a 2.0-litre 140bhp with six-speed manual, a 2.0-litre 163bhp six-speed auto ‘box and finally there’s the 2.2-litre 200bhp with a six-speed auto gearbox.

If you enjoy driving then the 1.6-litre 156bhp is the best choice because the engine is feisty, fun, makes overtaking manoeuvres child’s play and it also sounds lovely. It can get from 0 to 62mph in 8.6 seconds and has an achievable top speed of 126mph. However, let your head rule your heart and you’ll choose the most frugal and CO2 efficient unit: the 1.6 diesel 112bhp engine mated to the six-speed EGC manual gearbox.

Performance figures are reasonable for this engine: 11.9 seconds to reach 62mph and a top speed of 122mph.

Handing

Peugeot's 407 saloon was supposed to be a real contender in the four-door saloon class and although it wasn’t bad it couldn't compete with the likes of the Ford Mondeo and Volkswagen Passat. The new 508 has closed the gap in terms of handling and driving enjoyment thanks to a chassis that delivers good cornering ability and excellent front-end grip.

It may look like a run-of-the-mill saloon but the 508 is nimble, agile and its quick steering rack adds to the enjoyment levels. The steering is also nicely weighted, precise with impressive levels of feedback. Ok, so the 508 may not be as a sharp as a Ford Mondeo in the bends but it is better than a Volkswagen Passat.

Peugeot 508 Saloon rivals

Other Peugeot 508 (2011 - 2018) models: