• Peugeot's new 2008 is one of the most beautiful cars in its segment.
• The design ethos has been carried over into the cabin.
• The 2008's interior might be troublesome to some drivers.
• For more motoring stories, go to Wheels24
Earlier in 2021, Peugeot South Africa launched its new 2008. And right from the off, the SUV impressed, no doubt aided by its impeccable driving traits through mud-ridden roads brought about by a Highveld thunderstorm. News soon travelled that this Pug should not be messed with, and it was a delight experiencing the newcomer on an extended tenure.
But while the 2008's designers emphasised overall design and aesthetic appeal, one can't help but feel that several essential aspects were overlooked - especially in the cabin.
Looking at the 2008's interior with a critical eye, we delve into facets that directly affects the driver.
Comfortable seats, but…
The Peugeot 2008 is one of the better-looking SUVs in its segment, with the exterior drawing one in and inviting you to open the door and clamber inside. Do so, and the fighter jet-like cockpit invites you to make yourself comfortable in the driver's seat.
Should the vehicle's next refresh come around, the brand needs to rework the steering wheel's position. The small steering wheel has been designed in such a way that the driver has to look over it to see the instrument panel. This means that it must be positioned as low as possible to see the instrument panel. This results in a comprised entry and exit of the vehicle, as your knees will continuously knock against it.
It was a difficult task finding a compromise between my ideal seating position and the positioning of the steering wheel. Perhaps shorter drivers will have a less difficult time with this.
While the 2008 has one of the most satisfactory driving characteristics in its segment, it is somewhat let down by the steering wheel's design. With the driver's hands on the '10 to 2' position, the inward-facing mouldings put pressure on one's wrists. This is less of a problem on short drives, but on the open road, you soon find yourself adjusting your hands to find a more comfortable position - almost without notice.
While Peugeot has gone the route of making its new 2008 as aesthetically pleasing from almost all angles, they might have, perhaps unknowingly, compromised driver comfort in the process.
The 2008 deserves all the success that comes its way in South Africa - it really is a good SUV, despite my minor niggles which can be attributed to my height.
Wheels24's Janine Van der Post says: "I am a lot shorter than what Charlen is, and I don't have this problem with the steering wheel at all. In general, I prefer having the steering wheel at the highest setting if the option is available as it is most comfortable. The smaller steering wheel actually makes it even easier to drive and makes it feel more sporty and dynamic. It also aids in making parking into tighter spaces even more effortlessly.
"There's loads to write home about the 2008 like its stunning design leaving everyone turning their heads for a second look, the luxurious seats and sophisticated interior. Sure the 2008 is on the higher end of the scale in terms of price, but its premium interior and features alone are enough to warrant its price tag.
"It's made many people talk about a brand they've never even considered before, and curious consumers are always asking to take a closer look.
"The biggest highlight though, and certainly its trump card, is its fuel consumption. Look out for our next review where we'll share more about its frugal figures."
Price: Peugeot 2008 1.2T GT - R479 900