Peugeot 407

Peugeot’s 407 coupé certainly hit the right note with us thanks to its clever sound system which copied all of our favourite music on to its hard drive

  • Stereo: A real winner. The hard drive facility is excellent, with a generous 30gb capacity, and superb sound quality. Listening to my music has never been so pleasurable!<BR><BR>Electric front seats: They’re very easy to operate, ensuring optimum comfort at all times, while also allowing simple access to the rear.<BR><BR>Refinement: The 407 Coupé is a wonderfully quiet traveller on the motorway, and proves a relaxing car to drive.
  • Size: We’ve mentioned it before, but it’s worth reiterating. This is a big car that is extremely difficult to park. And it doesn’t become any easier over time, with the over-active sensors tending to become more of a hindrance than a help.

It's confession time. When I get handed the keys to a car, there’s one thing that’s just as important to me as the engine, styling or gearbox – the sound system.

I love music. Always have. And as you can see, I have a pretty sizeable collection of CDs that I enjoy listening to on the road. So no matter how thrilling the driving experience, if a car’s stereo doesn’t cut the mustard, I simply can’t get too excited about it.

But there have been no such problems with our Peugeot 407 Coupé. It’s top of the pops with me on account of its in-built hard drive, which allows you to store your favourite songs on board, just like on Apple’s iTunes. At 30gb, there’s generous capacity, although uploading the music takes a little longer than I would like. But the sound quality is excellent and it saves me carrying a massive amount of CDs on long journeys (although there are plenty of handy stowage bins if I do want to take some along).

Unfortunately, after 10 months, our time with the 407 Coupé is nearly up and we’ll shortly be returning it, jukebox and all. Overall, our lasting impression of the French coupé is that of a car whose desirability is determined by where it’s driven. On the motorway, it’s great. Trips to Cornwall, Scotland and Yorkshire were completed in comfort, with the powerful and refined 2.7-litre V6 engine easily eating up the miles, delivering respectable fuel economy of 35.3mpg.

In the city, it’s less impressive. The problem? It’s just too big, particularly when trying to manoeuvre into parking spaces. Yes, there are sensors to assist with this, but as mentioned in previous reports, they’re too trigger-happy, and are more of an annoyance than a help. Lengthy overhangs and poor rear vision have combined to cause a couple of unnecessary kerbings.

But I won’t allow those parking mishaps to cloud our verdict on the car. Styling-wise, it cuts a real dash. It’s deceptively practical, too, with the boot swallowing up four cases on a couple of airport runs. So hit or miss? Well, the verdict from this jukebox jury is that it’s a hit of course!

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