A little birdie seems to think the Malaysian launch of an all-new Peugeot model is just around the corner, and we can’t help but share this enthusiasm. So here’s our best (educated) guess at what we can expect from the incoming B-segment SUV contender, the 2008.
Test units of the 2nd-generation 2008 were spotted even prior to Bermaz taking over the local distributorship of the Peugeot brand, and it didn’t take long for more sightings to occur further afield of the Gurun assembly plant in semi-camouflaged form. Some were hiding plainly in traffic!
Though the past year (2021) was rather quiet in terms of news and premieres from the French brand under their new representatives, 2022 is shaping up to be much more high tempo. The 2008 is a particularly important pillar of Peugeot’s growing Malaysian line-up, which currently only comprise the recently updated 3008 and 5008.
To compete effectively in the B-segment SUV space, Bermaz will need to be bold with positioning and pricing while being careful to not dilute Peugeot's brand cachet. Like Mazda, the company has been steadily moving further upmarket, putting a cap on just how much freedom for equipment levels and margins to be ‘optimised’.
The 2008 has already begun production in Kedah for export to Thailand since December 2021 and will very likely share an identical spec sheet. According to some leaked documents that seem to confirm this, power will be supplied exclusively by a turbocharged 1.2-litre PureTech three-cylinder petrol engine with 130hp and 230Nm of torque.
As Thai-spec units receive the older EAT6 six-speed automatic transmission instead of the newer EAT8, the incoming CKD 2008 should also arrive in Malaysian showrooms with the former as its sole gearbox pairing with power going to the front wheels, themselves measuring 17-inches and riding on 215/60R17 tyres.
Some of you may remember the previous generation 208 and 2008 launching in early 2017 with a very similar powertrain. Indeed, besides the power bump to 130hp (+20hp) and 230Nm (+25Nm), they are virtually identical.
Visually, the all-new 2008 is a thoroughly new design over the older model with a much more contemporary exterior that’s punctuated by sharp lines and broad shoulders. Expected to arrive in a single Allure trim level, there will be LED headlights, LED taillights, and LED daytime running lights as well as contrasting gloss black exterior accents as standard.
Like in Thailand, there should be four colour options: Amazonite Grey, Nera Black, Pearl White, and the eye-catching Fusion Orange.
Inside, the biggest attention-getter is the i-Cockpit 2.0 that splits the dashboard into multiple tiers, paired with sleek piano-cap buttons and faux carbon fibre inserts. Other highlights include a 7-inch central infotainment display (with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity) and a 10-inch digital instrument cluster.
Somewhat disappointingly, the older model’s sunroof hasn’t been carried over and its automatic climate control is only single-zone.
On a livelier note, the 2008 will very likely arrive with a generous helping of active safety features, including Autonomous Emergency Braking (called Active Safety Brake), High Beam Assist, Blind Spot Monitoring, Lane Keep Assist, and even Driver Attention Warning.
Of course, we’ll have to wait for the official launch for finalised pricing but we should be looking at a range of RM130,000, potentially making it more expensive than the range-topping Honda HR-V but better value than a Hyundai Kona 1.6 Turbo. It should be an interesting fight!