Peugeot 108 review
Small, stylish and comfortable, the Peugeot 108 city car offers a range of trim levels for all pockets
The tiny Peugeot 108 offers plenty of big-car features for small car cash. Yet it isn’t our favourite choice in the highly competitive city car market. The Skoda Citigo is more refined and the Hyundai i10 provides much more space; both feel more mature and should be better ownership propositions.
Nevertheless, the 108 is still a good contender, especially if you want to inject a sense of style into your motoring, as Peugeot offers a wide range of personalisation options, which will no doubt attract younger buyers. There is a choice between three-door and five-door models, so you can pick between sharp looks and extra practicality if you’re sold on the pint-sized Peugeot, while the opening canvas roof is also a funky addition.
The Peugeot 108 is for sale in the hotly contested city car market. It comes in Access, Active and Allure trims, and is offered with three or five doors, plus the option of an opening roof on Top! models.
In a sector where economies of scale mean joint ventures are the done thing, the Peugeot 108 shares all of its running gear and basic bodyshell with the Citroen C1 and Toyota Aygo, with each car getting a unique look for the nose, tail and interior. As well as these two rivals, the 108 also goes up against the VW up!, Skoda Citigo and SEAT Mii trio, the platform-sharing Hyundai i10 and Kia Picanto, the co-developed Renault Twingo and Smart ForFour, plus small cars such as the Ford Ka+ and Fiats Panda and 500.
When the 108 first went on sale in 2014, it featured either 1.0 or 1.2 three-cylinder petrol engines. Today, the range has been pared back to just the 1.0, which is a bit of a shame, as the 1.2 gave the car a little extra punch that made it an entertaining performer that could cope with the odd longer journey. While that will be tougher with the 1.0, the 72bhp unit is still an eager performer that likes to rev, which gives the 108 a bit of character around town. It's front-wheel drive with a five-speed manual gearbox, while a 2-Tronic auto is available as an option, although this blunts the car's performance even further.
In terms of trim levels, Access is the most basic courtesy car special, as it only comes in the three-door body with plastic wheel trims. You still get a full suite of safety kit, including tyre pressure monitors, six airbags, stability control and a pair of Isofix mounts in the back, while there's also a USB charging socket, electric front windows and LED daytime running lights.
Keeping the Access basic helps the 108 to achieve a sub-£10k starting price, but it's quite a leap of nearly £1,800 to the next model in the range. Active cars add a touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, so you can use your phone maps on the seven-inch screen, plus a DAB radio, Bluetooth, air-con and a split folding rear seat. Move up to Allure, and it really is Allure-ing, with heated electric door mirrors, a rear camera, alloy wheels, auto lights and tinted windows.
All these models come with either three or five-doors, while the latter can be upgraded to Top! spec with the sliding canvas roof for £1,000 extra. In addition, Peugeot offers the occasional 108 special edition. This has included a Roland Garros version to tie in with the French Open tennis championships, while the current 108 Collection adds colour co-ordinated interior and exterior trim, including contrast colours for the roof of the 108 Top!.
In this review
- 1Verdict - currently readingSmall, stylish and comfortable, the Peugeot 108 city car offers a range of trim levels for all pockets
- 2Engines, performance and driveA power hike is designed to make the 1.0 more appealing, but it's still at its best in town
- 3MPG, CO2 and Running CostsWhen cars are this cheap and efficient, does it matter if they're not class leaders in every respect?
- 4Interior, design and technologyThe 108 feels more upmarket than the 107 it replaced, while touchscreen connectivity will satisfy buyers focusing on tech
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot spaceSize matters, and the Peugeot 108 is small, but for two people around town it makes lots of sense
- 6Reliability and SafetySolid crash test performances and a proven reliability record should make the Peugeot 108 a safe car to own