As Peugeot shows its re-engineered baby SUV, the 2008, spy images surface of an all-new mid-sizer.
PEUGEOT is preparing to take on the hugely successful Mazda CX-3 with a comprehensively updated 2008 SUV, set for launch in the fourth quarter this year.
The 2008 Series II will have a butch new look and a far more modern drivetrain option.
It will be followed towards the end of 2017 by the all-new 3008, featuring a much stronger SUV flavour than before. This will take the fight up to the upcoming second-generation Volkswagen Tiguan.
The pair will give Peugeot unfettered access to two of the fastest growing segments in Australia for the first time, according to marketing manager, Dimitri Andreatidis.
“In terms of our product strategy, the 2008 will play a fundamental role in establishing Peugeot’s merit in SUVs,” Andreatidis said. “It’s a stepping stone into our future SUV family, especially with the upcoming 3008.”
To debut internationally at the Geneva Motor Show early next month, ahead of an Australian launch in about October, the facelifted 2008, mimics the 208 Series II supermini by adopting a sharper nose treatment with more aggressive chrome detailing and redesigned air intakes.
Bolder wheel arch protrusions and restyled tail-light lenses give the B-segment crossover a more jacked-up appearance.
More importantly, the old 88kW 1.6-litre four-pot atmo unit and antiquated four-speed automatic powertrain that hobbled the 2008 in Australia since its 2013 release has been dumped.
It gives way to the 208’s recently acquired 81kW/205Nm 1.2-litre e-THP three-cylinder turbo petrol engine, driving the front wheels via a six-speed auto – and promising improved performance and efficiency.
Peugeot is hoping that the 2008 update works – to date, only 924 vehicles have been registered in just over two years, compared to the 1391 sales the CX-3 managed in just the first month of 2016.
Meanwhile, to be built at the Sochaux home plant in France alongside the T9 308 that sired it, the 3008 II – known internally as the P84 – is expected to take centre stage at the Paris Motor Show in October.
Compared with its more minivan-like predecessor of the same name, the new medium SUV will be appreciably longer yet likely to weigh as much as 140kg less, courtesy of the EMP2 platform that also underpins the 308 and latest Citroen Picasso people-mover series.
As these spy images of a 3008 development vehicle suggest, the size and proportions appear to follow those of the Mazda CX-5 quite closely, underlining the increasingly international appeal that Peugeot vehicles are adopting in order for them to pay their way.
Reports suggest that the more powerful 1.2-litre e-THP versions of the Pure Tech engines, with at least 96kW (and possibly much more), are set for the 3008.
Plus, an EV hybrid system driving the rear axle will provide additional traction on some versions, while 1.6-litre turbo-petrol and an all-new 1.5-litre turbo-diesel family, some with the option of an as-yet unseen eight-speed automatic, are also said to be on the cards.
Though Peugeot says it is far too early to speculate about pricing, the 3008 will most probably cost more than the existing Tiguan, which currently ranges from about $30,000 to the high-$40,000 mark.
While barely making a blip in Australia with just 1682 registrations since landing here in 2010, the 3008 has exceeded 700,000 sales worldwide, so its success is vital to the brand.