The Peugeot 208 compact hatch receives a major update for 2017 in the form of a new engine – Peugeot’s award-winning 1.2-litre Puretech three-cylinder turbo replacing the venerable Prince 1.6 naturally-aspirated mill.
The same update is concurrently applied on the 208’s crossover sibling, the 2008, which we cover in a separate article here.
Prices & Variants
Locally-assembled in Naza's Gurun plant in Kedah, the new 208 Puretech is offered exclusively in a single five-door bodystyle variant priced at RM89,888 on-the-road with insurance. The 3-door bodystyle is no longer offered in our market. The outgoing 208 1.6 Allure was priced at RM85,888 and RM95,888 in five- and three-door body guises respectively.
Peugeot has also exhausted its allocation of the 208 GTI for our market, although officials of local distributor Nasim Sdn Bhd confirmed that an updated version of the model will return to the line-up later this year.
A mildly-revised appearance accompany the new engine; an updated front fascia incorporates a redesigned bumper, headlights, grille, and signature LED daytime running lights. Tail lights are LED-illuminated and 16-inch alloy wheels adorn each corner.
Engine & Transmission
As with the majority of European models making the switch to downsized turbo engines, the 208 Puretech trades off a small amount of horsepower for a substantial increase in torque. From 122PS and 160Nm previously with the outgoing Prince 1.6 engine, the new Puretech variant generates 112PS and 205Nm, the latter coming from as low as 1,500rpm.
The engine also incorporates auto start/stop calibrated to deactivate turn the engine off as the vehicle slows to below 20km/h and restart at a prod of the accelerator. Peugeot claims that this feature has the benefit of slashing fuel consumption by up to 15% in dense urban traffic; the company also claims that the reignition process has been refined to fire up 40% faster.
Transmission has been uprated too, the former model’s 4-speed Tiptronic auto making way for a 6-speed Aisin slushbox. Claimed fuel efficiency is 4.2 litres/100km, compared to 6.7 litres/100km for the outgoing 1.6.
The new turbocharged engine puts the 208 in direct competition against the Ford Fiesta EcoBoost and Renault Clio GT Line.
The Fiesta, notably, is the enthusiast’s favourite. Despite its aging platform, most reviewers consider the Fiesta’s dynamics to be class-leading, an opinion that is shared by members of this team. The multi award-winning 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine makes 125PS and 170Nm, which go to the front wheels via a 6-speed dual clutch transmission. The Fiesta EcoBoost is priced at RM98,488 on-the-road without insurance.
The Clio GT Line is a costlier alternative, asking for a not insubstantial RM118,000 on-the-road without insurance. Its engine displaces 1.2 litres like the Peugeot’s but with an extra cylinder. Like the Ford, its engine is paired with a 6-speed dual clutch transmission. Outputs are rated at 120PS and 190Nm, with fuel consumption quoted 5.2 litres/100km on the NEDC.
Other potential rivals include the Mazda 2 (RM88,115 - RM94,110), Volkswagen Polo 1.6 MPI (RM77,646), and the Honda Jazz (RM71,536 – RM86,723).
Equipment levels of the 208 remain largely identical to what was offered previously. An improved infotainment system features a 7-inch HD multifunction touchscreen along with a 6-speaker Arkamys 3D audio system.
Other standard features of note include:
For all models launched from 2017 onwards, including the 208 and 2008 Puretech, Peugeot vehicles are covered by a 5-year / 120,000km manufacturer-backed warranty. To encourage early adopters, the first 100 customers are additionally offered a 3-year / 60,000km free service programme. These come on top of existing benefits that include 3 years 24hr Roadside Assistance, access to the Peugeot Lounge at Subang Airport, and Peugeot Privilege membership.