Some like to show every muscle fiber (and every tattoo) of their well-trained body under a suitably cut shirt, the others put on a casual casual shirt and are satisfied with the knowledge of their fitness. Would be the Peugeot 308 GT a person, he would undoubtedly belong to the second category - which makes the compact French personable at first sight.
The five-seater is the most powerful model in the compact range of the lion brand. Still, one has to say. Because in just a few months, the GTI version of the Über-308 will be on the market, with over 270 PS and a much more aggressive appearance. Our test car is content with 204 HP, which makes it clear that we are dealing with the "real" GT. Peugeot also runs a diesel with 181 hp as a counterpart to the Golf GTD under the same label.
The petrol engine develops its power from a comparatively modest displacement of 1,6 liters, competitors with similarly powerful offers such as VW (Golf GTI), Renault (Mégane 220 GT) or Mercedes (A 250) almost always use units with around 2 Liters back. The displacement disadvantage is not one at first, because the 308 gets down to business right from the first gas surge and the pure driving values - 7,5 seconds to accelerate to 100 km / h and 235 km / h top - are absolutely fine. Only at the top of the rev range, if you want to mobilize the last reserves of the unit on a free highway, does it sound somewhat exhausting.
Which would not be so bad if the Peugeot engineers had paid more attention to a sporty sound overall. But nothing there, who hoped for engine music will be disappointed. But on the other hand, this reluctance also fits the rather fine appearance of the Frenchman.
Clear lines in a horizontal orientation, could it be that Peugeot looked especially closely at the Golf? This is supported by the dimensions of the 308, which, apart from a few millimeters, are identical to those of the German bestseller. When it comes to luggage, the Gauls even depend on the Germans: with 420 liters in the basic configuration, 20 liters more can fit in the 308. Subjectively, it offers a little less space in the back.
At work, the differences are all the greater - because Peugeot obviously wants to stand out from the competition with all his might. As in the 208, the small, low-lying steering wheel is used here; you don't look through the steering wheel at the instruments, but over the valance. That is so wanted. However, one does not like to see any real advantage in this. For drivers with figure problems around the abdominal area, this can even be really annoying. A similar mannerism is the tachometer, whose scale had to be built up from right to left. This is also rather irritating and brings nothing apart from confusion in everyday life.
Like all vehicles in this series, the 308 GT is very good, some drivers would even say surprisingly well made. Nothing wobbles, nothing rattles, Peugeot seems to have learned its lesson after a few years of lax quality. The cockpit not only looks high-quality, it was also extremely tidy and houses significantly fewer buttons and switches than usual in this class. However, this also has an obvious disadvantage: Many things can only be controlled using the touchscreen monitor, which, however, is not really intuitive to use.
Nevertheless, as a driver of at least medium size, you feel comfortable in the interior. The small steering wheel allows a very direct steering feeling, up to the limit of nervousness. The manual six-speed manual transmission, which left nothing to be desired in the test, is also directly managed. Unfortunately, this does not apply to the suspension of the GT, which is lowered by one centimeter in comparison to the normal models. The undercarriage looks brittle and unnecessarily hard, you almost fall into some potholes. That doesn't really match the otherwise elegant appearance of this Peugeot.
One more word about the engine: if you don't permanently use the possibilities of the unit, you can still achieve reasonably acceptable consumption. Anyone who believes the official standard consumption (5,6 liters) cannot be helped anyway. With test consumption of 8,2 liters (+ 46%) sounds more violent than it really was. On normal days, swimming in traffic and only occasionally letting your well-camouflaged muscles play, consumption of around 7 liters is quite realistic. And that also fits the Peugeot GT, which is just a sporty compact and not a compact sports car. If you are looking for something like this: wait a bit - see above.
Author: Peter Eck / SP-X