Peugeot 208 vs rivals
In its first test, the all-new Peugeot 208 meets class leaders from Ford and Kia
The supermini sector is the most competitive there is, and it’s packed with top-class contenders. Now you can add the Peugeot 208 to that list.
More reviews for 208 Hatchback
With its sleeks looks, classy cabin and brilliant new engine, the car recaptures the spirit of its famous 205 ancestor. The question is, is it good enough to beat two of the best in the business?
Well, it certainly edges the Kia. While the Rio is handsome, practical and well equipped – and backed by the brand’s excellent seven-year warranty – its ride is too firm. Plus, the 1.25-litre engine is the weakest in the Rio line-up.
If you value driving thrills, the Ford Fiesta is still the car to beat. It’s also a good-looking, roomy and refined choice. But the car costs more to buy, is more expensive to run and will have lost more of its value come trade-in time – and for most supermini buyers that will be the clincher.
So by the very narrowest of margins, the 208 snatches the win. It’s not perfect, though. Other engines in the line-up aren’t as convincing as the 1.2-litre, while the ride and handling fall short of the best. But its stylish exterior, upmarket cabin and low running costs are hard to ignore.
Peugeot should savour this win while it can, as a heavily revised Fiesta is due in September.
WinnerPeugeot 208 ★★★★
The stylish new 208 marks a return to form for Peugeot. The car looks good, has a smart cabin and provides low running costs. However, it’s certainly not as much fun to drive as the Ford, and other engines in the line-up aren’t as good as the new three-cylinder.
2ndFord Fiesta ★★★★
It has ruled the supermini roost for four years now, but the Fiesta has finally suffered a road test defeat. Although it’s still superb to drive, it’s the most expensive of our three cars to buy and run. Plus, it has the worst predicted residual value. The facelifted model can’t come soon enough.
3rdKia Rio ★★★★
Despite its third-place finish, the Kia would still be a good choice. Smart looks, a well equipped cabin and an excellent aftersales package mark the Rio out. However, the 1.25-litre engine is the weakest in the range and the ride is too hard.
In this review
- 1Introduction - currently readingIn its first test, the all-new Peugeot 208 meets class leaders from Ford and Kia
- 21st Peugeot 208 1.2 ActiveThe Peugeot 208 aims to move the French brand's supermini game on to a new level
- 32nd Ford FiestaIt’s been on top for a long time, but now supermini class leader looks under threat
- 43rd Kia RioImpressive all-rounder presents a stern test to supermini rivals
- 5Facts and figuresPeugeot 208 vs rivals - specifications