2012 Peugeot 308 Review - Official photos, features, specs, pricing

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The new Peugeot 308 comes with a new look, features innovative e-HDi micro-hybrid technology and optimises fuel consumption and CO2 emissions, which start from just 98 g/km.

Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308 -Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308 -

With its new lines, the Peugeot 308 subtly incorporates the Marque’s latest stylistic codes. The car’s body follows the contours of the mechanical assembly underneath.

Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308

The appeal of the three body shapes (Saloon, CC and SW) thus acquires a more technological elegance, illustrated by the presence of LED front lights with light guide.

Dynamism and emotion are present as ever in the genes of the 308, particularly with its more assertive look thanks to new Xenon headlamps with titanium coloured mask and the hatchback in its exclusive GTi finish.

Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308

Determined to consolidate its leadership in terms of road holding and driving pleasure, the Peugeot 308 seeks to become a reference in terms of environmental efficiency. Indeed, following in the footsteps of the 508, the new Peugeot 308 features innovative e-HDi micro-hybrid technology, the latest generation STOP & START, on the 1.6 litre HDi FAP 112 bhp Euro 5 engine. This offer, on the “entry level” engine, is available with a semi-automatic manual gearbox and, for the first time, with a full manual gearbox, for optimal driveability.

Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308

In addition to micro-hybrid technology, all factors impacting the level of CO2 emissions have been optimised:

- weight reduced by 25 kg on average per car;
- launch of 16” tyres with Very Low Rolling Resistance;

- optimisation of the latest generation engines (VTi, THP, HDi Euro 5);

-Cx of 0.28 for versions with a low fuel consumption – A record in the segment.

Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308

Fuel consumption sets the standard:

-98 g/km of CO2* for the 308 saloon 1.6 litre e-HDi FAP 112 bhp BMP6 – A record in the segment (* pending approval, available in the summer of 2011 – 104 g/km CO2 at launch);

-available power trains, comprising 4 petrol engines ranging from 98 bhp to 200 bhp for the exclusive GTi version and 4 diesel engines from 92 bhp to 163 bhp, have also been optimised to ensure a comprehensive range of engines guaranteeing environmental efficiency. As a result, the basic version – the 308 saloon 1.6 litre HDi FAP 92 bhp with manual gearbox – is well positioned, with CO2 emissions reduced to only 110 g/km.

The dimensions and quality of equipment on the new 308 remain unchanged, regardless of body shape, guaranteeing a spacious and comfortable passenger compartment. The same is true of primary, secondary and tertiary safety, which remain at the highest level.

The new 308 will receive its world premiere at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show and will go on sale from April 2011 in Europe. Its mission is to continue the success story of the 308 family, with nearly 900,000 models sold since its launch in September 2007.

The design of the new 308 subtly incorporates the new stylistic codes of the Peugeot Marque. While the dimensions are unchanged, the new lines marry as closely as possible the car’s mechanical assembly to accentuate its athletic poise, while the front aspect gives a fresh look to the “floating” front grille concept. Greater importance accorded to unbroken surfaces marks a determination to present an elegant and luxurious style. The central protective capping, available in a black lacquer finish, has been made thinner to give greater prominence to the sheer metal. This is also true of the single air intake which is now smaller in size.

Styling elements enhance the natural elegance which emanates from the new 308. A satin chrome bead enhances the new front grille, as do horizontal bars, available in lustrous black or chrome according to body shape (saloon, CC or SW).

The bottom section of the lower front panel, which helps visually to broaden the car and “plant” it on the road, incorporates new dual-function lights (daytime and sidelights) shaped like a boomerang, available according to versions. With their meticulous finish, they blend perfectly and are harmoniously positioned on the upper surround of the fog light housing. Composed of variable intensity LEDs and a light guide, they guarantee a unique visual signature by day and by night while illustrating the high level of technology featured on the new 308.

In the upper section, the V-shaped nose of the bonnet is one of the main expressive features of the 308. It has been redesigned to fit the car’s mechanical assembly as closely as possible and provides a new link with the floating front grille, in line with Peugeot’s new stylistic codes. The Marque badge, in its new dual material construction, is proudly positioned at the tip of the bonnet on a new black lacquer base set with a chrome bead, also in the shape of a V. The outline of this nose, fluid and characteristic, is more curvaceous, particularly at the junction of the lights and the bonnet. The new smooth glass front headlamps, closely fitting the three cylinders, suggest a look that is both refined and assertive. And when the 308 is equipped with dynamic bi-directional Xenon headlamps complete with titanium coloured base, this look becomes even more profound, displaying all the strength of character of the new 308.

The dynamism of the front aspect is echoed on the sides of the car. A styling line, running from the front wheel arches, crosses the side of the body and the rear lights before dropping towards the lower rear panel and coming to an end in the lower section. The fluidity of the style is enhanced by the lateral glazed surface which follows a plunging waistline, and also by the panoramic rear window, which overlaps the rear quarter panel pillars. Lastly, to establish the general appearance of the 308, a lower waistline starting from the lower front panel extends as far as the rear bumper. The car therefore seems well poised on the road, ready to exploit its dynamic qualities to the full.

New diamanté effect 16 or 17 inch alloy wheels or Storm Grey 18 inch wheels for the GTi version underline this dynamic appeal. The sense of dynamism is enhanced further by the car’s rear style.

On the saloon, the wraparound lower rear panel adds a note of robustness and perceived quality as well as a sporty touch thanks to the presence of a styling element in the shape of a spoiler and two inserts, which can have a chrome finish, suggesting exhaust nozzles. The new Lion takes its place in the centre of the tailgate, while a satin chrome bead emphasizes the horizontal waistline, bringing a new balance to the rear of the 308.

On the SW, the contours of the robust lower panel and the rear lights have been designed to allow a wide boot aperture. The low load sill resulting from this design promises easy loading and a large internal capacity. From an aesthetic point of view, a horizontal waistline runs around the rear tailgate in its central section to “stretch” the car. This sensation is amplified by the body-coloured number plate insert surmounted by the new Lion badge.

On the CC the strength of the rear style is repeated, with a sense of horizontality given to the rear aspect that reinforces the impression of width. Numerous details add to this overall effect: the concave movement crossing the tailgate under the spoiler, the chrome bead framing the number plate and the presence of an air diffuser in the lower section. On either side and extending over the wings, the ruby-coloured LED rear lights with light curtain effect broaden the silhouette and give the 308 CC a unique and spectacular visual signature.

Stylists worked hard to exploit to the full the interior volumes freed up by the semi-tall architecture of the 308. They therefore designed a particularly inclined fascia panel, almost symmetrical to the front windscreen pillars, to offer unimpeded exterior visibility. In addition, there was a marked determination to give the interior a very upmarket feel and an enhanced sense of perceived quality. The result is a fluid, pure and elegant fascia panel where pride of place is given to superior materials, according to finish: soft covering, leather trim, chrome, black lacquered materials... The care given to the finish and the emphasis on interior comfort are evident in every detail. According to the level in the range, new motifs decorate the door panel strips, panel trim, thumb rests on the steering wheel, etc. Similarly, the special seats on the GTi version have red visible stitching with specific marking on top of the seat back and an aluminium steering wheel ring showing the word “GTi”. Dark-tinted rear windows combined with dark wheel trims (Storm Grey) and the titanium mask of the discharge lamps, give this version a sporty and assertive identity, perfectly in keeping with the dynamic potential of its 1.6 litre THP 200 bhp engine.

Inside the 308 CC, the eye is caught also by the elegance of the 4 seats with integral head restraints and the possibility of full leather trim on the fascia panel, in different shades, which convey a touring car image. This distinctive design makes for even more comfortable seats with an Airwave warm air diffuser behind the necks of the front passengers. The pleasure of open-top driving is thus enhanced.

The passenger compartment has been designed to ensure that a sense of space and brightness predominates, making occupants feel they don’t want their journey to end.

The interior dimensions and efforts by the designers to free up as much space as possible for passenger comfort make the 308 one of the most spacious cars in its segment. Elbow width at the front is 1464 mm for the saloon and SW body shapes, and rises to 1492 mm for the Coupé Cabriolet version. At the rear, these dimensions are respectively 1471 mm and 1321 mm for the CC. The feeling of space is even more noticeable on account of the many clever storage spaces available inside the 308. Total storage capacity is 42 litres, making life inside the car easier and preserving space for the occupants.

All of the 7 passengers that can be seated in the 308 SW thanks to the optional additional 2 rear seats can benefit from these fitted spaces. They can also modulate and adjust the car’s interior as necessary by opting for individual seats in row 2. Nor has the boot volume been ignored, with a capacity under the parcel shelf of 674 litres for the SW and 430 litres for the saloon. With the load potential exploited to the full, the capacities are 2149 and 1398 litres respectively. On the CC, all four passengers can benefit from the availability of a large boot capacity (465 litres) in the coupé configuration. On the cabriolet, with the retractable roof stored in the boot, the boot still offers a capacity of 266 litres. What’s more, it only takes 20 seconds to convert the 308 CC into a dynamic coupé or an elegant cabriolet.

Passengers in the 308 saloon and SW will also be able to benefit from a “sunny” passenger compartment thanks to the panoramic roofs available for these body shapes. They increase the total glazed surface area to 4.86 m² on the saloon and 5.58 m² on the SW. The light level inside the car can be regulated by means of an electrically-operated roller blind associated with this equipment.

To make the journey even more pleasant, automatic dual-zone air conditioning is available. With its active charcoal filter, it also reduces hydrocarbon odours inside the passenger compartment.

Finally, passengers will be able to benefit from a high quality audio and telematics system: WIP Sound audio system, Bluetooth hands-free kit, WIP Nav satellite navigation and WIP Com 3D with a retractable 7” 16/9 colour display. A JBL hi-fi system is also available and may be combined with laminated side windows for optimal acoustic performance.

Regardless of body shape, the new 308 offers a high level of comfort and convenience.

The reduction of CO2 emissions was one of the main objectives of this project. This resulted in a search for environmental efficiency at all levels. All factors influencing fuel consumption were optimised:

- weight reduced by 25 kg on average per car;
- launch of 16” tyres with Very Low Rolling Resistance;

-use of a piloted oil pump on 1.6 litre HDi engines;

- optimisation of operation of the alternator on some engines;

-improvement of power steering control (electropump unit);

-Cx of 0.28 for versions with a low fuel consumption – A record in the segment;

-e-HDi micro-hybrid technology;

-98 g/km of CO2* for the 1.6 litre e-HDi FAP 112 bhp BMP6 version – A record in the segment (* pending approval, available in the summer of 2011 – 104 g/ km CO2 at launch).

After the 508, the new Peugeot 308 is the second of the Marque’s cars to introduce the innovative e-HDi micro-hybrid technology, a new generation STOP & START.

This innovation is based on the combination of a 1.6 litre HDi Euro 5 diesel engine and a reversible alternator ensuring the STOP & START function. Relying on an alternator control system (Volt Control) to recover energy during deceleration and a hybrid battery to store and deliver additional energy on startup (e-booster), the HDi unit allows:

- a 15% reduction in fuel consumption in urban traffic;
- a 5 g/km reduction in CO2 emissions for approved cycle fuel consumption;

-40% faster restarting (400 ms) than with an enhanced starter STOP & START;

-activation of engine cut-out from 20 km/h with a manual gearbox (8 km/h for the electronically-controlled gearbox);

-increased driveability of the STOP & START (silent operation, no vibrations).

The second-generation reversible alternator used here has a power of 2.2 kW and allows up to 600,000 restarts. However the STOP & START function can be de-activated by the driver if preferred by means of a button on the fascia panel.

To deploy this technology on a large scale, the new 308 proposes e-HDi technology with a “basic” engine, the 1.6 litre HDi FAP 112 bhp, which can be coupled with two gearboxes (manual or electronically-controlled). This is a first, since hitherto e-HDi technology was available only with the BVMP6 electronically-controlled gearbox. This new offer maximises driving enjoyment by increasing the phases of driving “in silence”. When coupled with a manual gearbox, engine cut-out is possible from a speed of 20 km/h.

To reduce CO2 emissions as much as possible, the new 308 is uniquely equipped with the very latest-generation engines for both petrol (VTi or THP engines) and diesel versions (new HDi Euro 5 engines).

On the saloon, all 8 available engines, as well as different possible gearbox combinations (manual, electronically-controlled manual or automatic), will allow every customer to find the version that suits them best.

4 Euro 5 petrol engines:

-1.4 litre VTi 98 bhp with 5-speed manual gearbox;

- 1.6 litre VTi 120 bhp with 5-speed manual gearbox or automatic gearbox;
- 1.6 litre THP 156 bhp with 6-speed manual gearbox or automatic gearbox;

- 1.6 litre THP 200 bhp with 6-speed manual gearbox (exclusive to GTi version). 4 Euro 5 diesel engines:

- 1.6 litre HDi FAP 92 bhp with 5-speed manual gearbox;
- 1.6 litre e-HDi FAP 112 bhp with 6-speed manual gearbox or electronically-controlled manual gearbox;

- 2.0 litre HDi FAP 150 bhp with 6-speed manual gearbox;
- 2.0 litre HDi FAP 163 bhp with automatic gearbox or 6-speed manual gearbox (only on the 308 CC).

True to the Marque’s values in terms of driving pleasure, the new 308 seeks also to preserve its leadership in terms of road holding. The features that make the 308 a reference are maintained:

- rigid body structure;
- McPherson type front suspension;
- rear suspension with torsion beam;
- hydraulic dampers with valves;

-power steering with variable assistance piloted by an electro-pump unit;

-large disc brakes (ventilated at the front) – up to 302 x 26 mm;

-ABS, electronic brake force distribution, emergency brake assist and automatic switching on of hazard warning lights as standard;

- Bosch 8.1 ESP according to versions.

Whether in terms of primary, secondary or tertiary safety, the new 308 is positioned at the highest level.

Firstly, the excellent rigidity of the structure ensures optimal operation of the wheels and suspension ensuring a high level of primary safety. In terms of secondary safety, the structure itself has been rigorously designed to withstand even the most severe impact, thanks in particular to a triple force channel at the front. The use of high-strength steel and “multilayer” reinforcements in specific areas has made it possible to raise the level of safety of occupants while reducing the overall weight of the car. In addition to the performance of the structure, efficient means of restraint are proposed:

- up to 8 air bags on the saloon and SW;

-up to 6 air bags on the CC, including 2 head air bags at the front;

-extractible safety hoops on the CC in the event of rollover;

-3-point seat belts with belt not fastened or unfastened acoustic warnings;

- Isofix fixtures.

Lastly, with regard to tertiary safety, the new 308 benefits from Peugeot Connect services. Occupants are put through to an assistance helpline when an emergency call is made (Peugeot Connect SOS) or a breakdown service in the case of a mechanical incident (Peugeot Connect Assistance). These services are available via a Peugeot Connect unit or with the top-of-the-range WIP Com 3D telematics offer.

Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308Photo: 2012 Peugeot 308

The new 308 range offers a total of 11 colours, three of which are new:

- Bourrasque Blue

-Philaea Blue

- Umber (already available on the 308 CC)
- Bianca White
- Hurricane Grey
- Vapor Grey

-Aluminium

- Shark Grey
- Black Pearl
- Babylon Red
- Pearlescent White (only on the 308 CC).

New 2012 Peugeot 308 specifications, review, photos and images courtesy of Peugeot.

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