Peugeot 308 SW review 2014

A big talking point for Peugeot since its launch last year, the 308 caused a stir with its innovative design and interior, along with its title as 2014 European Car of the Year.

Following on from the success of the 308 hatchback comes the 308 SW, the larger estate version. With the same front end as the hatch but with a longer wheelbase and rear overhang, Peugeot claims that it has unparalleled practicality, legroom and boot space.

Similar in dimension to some of its German-made rivals, the 308 SW undercuts most of its competitors with a price tag that starts from just £16,845, but the carmaker insists that the 308 SW doesn’t scrimp on quality.

Exterior

The front end of the 308 SW is virtually identical to its hatchback sibling, with the same sleek design and slim-line floating grille. The bonnet features a sculpted aerodynamic design, along with LED headlights.

Available in four trims – ‘Access’, ‘Active’, ‘Allure’ and ‘Feline’ – standard features include a large glass roof and parking aids.

The Active trim adds 16-inch alloy wheels, while higher-end Allure and Feline trims add 17- and 18-inch alloys, plus electric folding door mirrors.

Interior

Echoing the i-Cockpit design of the 308 hatchback, the interior of the 308 SW features a 9.7-inch touchscreen with few buttons. As a result, it looks neat, simple and modern, while the interior is also of high quality that rivals many models above its price point.

The model also comes with a range of safety kit and mod-cons which includes a reversing camera, front parking sensors, cruise control, dual-zone climate control and parking aids.

The larger size of the estate model also means that space on the inside has been vastly increased, with enough room in the back for even the tallest of passengers. Boot space is also a major talking point, with 660 litres that shames the vast majority of its rivals.

Folding the rear seats flat increases space to a gargantuan 1,660 litres, while the boot is user-friendly easy to access. An extra 70 litres of storage space is hidden under the floor, making it perfect for storing smaller items.

On the road

The 308 SW is available with a choice of petrol and diesel engines. A PureTech 1.2-litre petrol is available with a choice of 110bhp or 130bhp, while a range of BlueHDi diesels are also available, with excellent fuel economy and minimal CO2 emissions.

The most efficient in the range, the 1.6-litre 120bhp diesel, emits an impressive 85g/km with fuel economy of 88.3mpg, while the 130bhp PureTech petrol emits 109g/km and delivers 60.1mpg.

Linked with a six-speed automatic gearbox, these ultra-frugal engines ensure that the 308 SW has the best possible mix of performance and economy to suit all tastes and budgets.

Steering is light and equally at home on urban runs or on motorways, while soft suspension will soak up even the roughest and bumpiest of B roads. Composed and refined, the engines remain hushed even at high speeds, with the 1.6-litre diesel the quietest.

Verdict

Sleek, innovative and with class-beating practicality and storage space, the Peugeot 308 SW provides drivers and passengers with everything necessary for a comfortable and responsive drive, though the boot space might be a little too much for drivers who don’t have use for it.

Regardless, with high-quality materials and a high level of attention to detail, the new 308 SW is indicative of Peugeot’s upwards movement into premium markets.

Priced from only £16,845, the 308 SW is priced extremely competitively against even its strongest rivals, while a frugal engine range ensures that it’ll be cheap to run throughout its lifetime.