Peugeot has expanded the range of its award-winning 3008 family car by adding a lavishly-equipped GT Line+ flagship derivative. Here are some reasons why you should consider buying it... And some why you shouldn't.
We Like: Edgy styling, practicality, interior design and comfort, quality.
We Don’t Like: Touchscreen system is clumsy, small dealer footprint.
If you need more power and AWD: The Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0TSI 4Motion Highline provides more shove from its bigger engine, but doesn’t feel quite as upmarket as the Peugeot inside. It's priced from R571 900.
If space isn’t the biggest factor: The new Volvo XC40 T3 R-Design is a little smaller than the 3008, but features a very attractive exterior and equally premium interior. The new T3 R-Design is actually a good buy from R528 336.
Don't forget about Opel: The Opel Grandland X rides on the same chassis and uses the same engine as the 3008. If you prefer the less quirky design elements on the Opel, it’s a solid buy at R565 000 for the Grandland X 1.6 Turbo Cosmo.
The 3008 GT Line+ is elegantly stylish and generously equipped with features.
What is a GT Line+?
The GT Line+ derivative sits at the summit of the 3008 range and features as many gizmos and luxury features as Peugeot's family car can offer. Safety is improved with the inclusion of front collision warning, emergency brake assist and blind spot monitoring systems.
In the practicality department, there is the inclusion of an electrically operated tailgate, while the interior gets special Nappa leather trim and a full-length panoramic roof. Interestingly the wheels drop a size from 19-inch to 18-inches, which is not the norm for a halo derivative, but the plucky Peugeot still looks well-proportioned on smaller wheels.
These specifications are over and above that of the GT Line and come at a premium of R65 000 over the aforementioned derivative.
Smart interior quality
Perceived interior quality of the 3008 is excellent and incorporates a smart combination of materials.
We have reviewed a fair number of 3008s since its launch in July 2017 (click here to see them) and have been impressed by Peugeot’s progression in terms of build quality and use of interior materials. The cabin feels solid and well built and the trim materials range from a soft-touch rubber to rich textured cloth weave that runs along the door panels and clad the dashboard on the front passenger's side.
The instrument cluster can be customised to display whatever in-car information you'd like to be displayed in front of you. The resolution of the dials is excellent and the crisp blue light isn’t distracting at night. There is also the option of a bronze-coloured theme, but that doesn’t look quite as slick and modern as the blue.
The hands-free tailgate is a useful feature and the load bay is sizable for storing a wide variety of goods.
It’s not all about design with the Peugeot 3008 as it features a plethora of practical features too. The GT Line+ derivative comes equipped with a hands-free tailgate function (so that if you find your hands occupied with groceries when approaching the vehicle, you can swing your foot under the rear bumper and the tailgate will open automatically – provided the key is in your pocket). What's more, the tailgate can be closed the same way – or you can use the key to open and close it.
There are levers in the luggage bay that allow you to easily drop the rear seatback (and a ski hatch) if you need to load longer items into the hold. Neat little bucket-style receptacles are useful for storing small things that you don’t want rolling around in the load bay.
From the pictures above, the rear legroom looks a little tight, but it’s actually the length of the chair that’s deceptive. There is certainly sufficient room for adults and the Nappa leather adds a very upmarket ambience to the cabin.
Comfortable ride quality
We have praised the 3008 for its excellent ride quality and admirably low Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH) levels. Even with a full-length panoramic roof, road and wind noise are kept well at bay. The small steering wheel, as fitted to virtually all modern Peugeot passenger vehicles (at least those in South Africa) has had the desired effect of making them feel sportier and more responsive to drive. It’s not entirely necessary in a practical family car, but the flagship 3008 is compliant when tasked with a bit of enthusiastic driving. Body roll is expected in a "high-rider" like this, but it corners flatter than most cars in the segment and with the smaller wheels, actually rides better over the bumps too. Buyers will find the 3008 to be comfortable and forgiving out on the road.
It’s a bit odd that Peugeot delivered a test car to us that has not appeared on new vehicle price lists since March 2018. You can, however still get a GT Line+ on special order, it just may take some time to get here. The standard GT Line is still available and, as mentioned above, only misses out on a few specification items.
Infotainment system can be clumsy
The layout of the infotainment system in the 3008 is not as intuitive as it should be, but usability improves with familiarity.
Because the fascia's largely devoid of buttons, most adjustments need to be made through the infotainment system. You stab at a toggle switch below the air vents and then adjust settings by making touchscreen inputs. The system is a little lazy to respond to quick inputs, like when you try to rapidly change the interior temperature.
The many sub-menus within the system can get a bit confusing too, but with greater familiarity, you're likely to improve the speed with which you can find settings.
Engine doesn’t quite compete at this price
Although good, the engine in the 3008 may not be as flexible as other offerings when fully loaded with luggage and passengers.
With an asking price of close to R600k, the GT Line+ competes with a handful of strong competitors, all of which boast powerful and torquey engines. The 3008 range currently only consists of turbopetrol units. The unit powering this GT Line+ is a 1.6-litre turbopetrol that produces peak outputs of 121 kW and 240 Nm.
While the powerplant performs adequately on a day-to-day basis when taxed with a light load, come holiday time, when you’ve brimmed the loading bay and loaded the entire family aboard, the engine's lack of torque is likely to become an issue. The competition’s turbopetrol motors all pack more torque, and power.
An excellent product overall, but GT Line and Allure derivatives arguably offer greater value for money.
The Peugeot 3008 GT Line+ is probably not the pick of the 3008 range – the GT Line or Allure derivatives, which are powered by the same turbopetrol engine, offer much better value for money. There are some nice-to-have features, such as the panoramic roof and electric tailgate, and the safety systems certainly sweeten the deal, but they all inflate the flagship 3008's list price.
Peugeot's small dealer footprint in South Africa and the negative perception of its service quality still haunt the brand. It will take some time for the 3008 to win over local buyers, but if the French marque can successfully allay consumer fears, then the 3008 will realise its true potential. Afterall, it's an excellent, premium product that stands out in a crowded segment.