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Future models - Peugeot - 508

Geneva show: Peugeot outs 508 in new liftback form

French revolution: The 508 is no longer a four-door sedan, having made the shift to a five-door liftback body style that is becoming increasingly popular among new-vehicle buyers.

New-generation Peugeot 508 transitions from four-door sedan to five-door liftback

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Peugeot logo22 Feb 2018

By JUSTIN HILLIARD

PEUGEOT has whipped the covers off the new-generation 508 ahead of its international debut at the Geneva motor show next month, with the large car transitioning from a four-door sedan to a five-door liftback.

While Peugeot Australia has confirmed an Australian launch for the 508, specific timing is still unknown. However, it will follow international markets which start taking deliveries in September.

Drawing inspiration from the Exalt and Instinct concepts, the 508 has been dramatically redesigned, sporting striking front and rear ends, and a couple-style side profile with frameless doors.

Up front, the signature chequered grille is flanked by full-LED headlights that are intersected by vertical LED daytime running lights (DRLs) which terminate at the bumper’s air intakes.

Significantly, the specific placement of a ‘508’ badge on the nose of the bonnet pays homage to the 508’s predecessors, the 504 and 504 coupe.

At the rear, the full-LED tail-lights are connected by a gloss-black horizontal strip that is quickly becoming another Peugeot signature.

The lighting system features a claw-like graphic that has a difference appearance depending on the viewing angle, while the look is complemented by a diffuser with twin chrome exhaust tips.

Measuring in at 4750mm long (-79mm), 1859mm wide (+31mm) and 1403mm tall (-73mm) with a 2793mm wheelbase (-24mm), the 508’s dimensions are generally more compact than the model it replaces.

Inside, elements taken from the newest 3008 and 5008 SUVs are apparent, headlined by the latest interpretation of Peugeot’s i-Cockpit set-up.

In its highest specification, it has a compact steering wheel, a high-resolution 10.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system and a high-set 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster.

Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support is bundled in with voice control, wireless smartphone charging and satellite navigation with live traffic.

A futuristic gear selector for the eight-speed automatic transmission points towards seven piano key-style toggle switches that provide shortcuts to the main infotainment functions.

One of these shortcuts is for i-Cockpit Amplify which offers two customisable ambience levels – Boost and Relax – that adjust vehicle settings to cater towards the sight, hearing and touch senses of occupants.

The front seats are available with up to eight-way power adjustment with dual memory functionality and five massaging modes.

Cargo capacity is 487 litres with the 60:40 split-fold second row upright but expands to 1537L when the rear pews are folded down. The boot is accessed via a hands-free power tailgate.

Riding on PSA Group’s EMP2 platform, the 508 weighs, on average, 70kg less than the previous model, while its multi-link rear suspension can be optioned with adaptive dampers that are adjustable via four driving modes – Eco, Sports, Comfort and Normal.

A suite of advanced driver-assist technologies extends to night vision, forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane-keep assist, driver attention alert, high-beam assist, speed limit and traffic sign recognition, adaptive cruise control with stop and go functionality, steering assist, active blind-spot monitoring, a 360-degree camera and park assist.

Initially, three powertrains will be on offer – including one petrol and two diesel – with varying states of tune, but a petrol-electric plug-in hybrid option is also on the way.

Specifically, the 1.6-litre PureTech petrol is available in 134kW and 168kW forms, the 1.5-litre BlueHDi diesel comes with 97kW, and the 2.0-litre BlueHDi diesel is offered in 119kW and 134kW tunes.

While torque outputs for these units are yet to be detailed, Peugeot claims the 508 will provide best-in-class carbon dioxide emissions.

According to Peugeot Australia managing director Anouk Poelmann, the latest 508 will carry on the esteemed legacy of its predecessors.

“Following the launch of the all-new Peugeot 3008 and 5008 SUV, we now turn our attention to the sedan market with the all-new 508 – a vehicle that encapsulates the best in French design, engineering and allure,” she said.

“The Peugeot ‘5-series’ family of vehicles has always held an esteemed position both locally and abroad, providing motorists with a stylish, reliable and well-specified vehicle, and the all-new 508 stays true to this rich heritage.

“In Australia, the revered 504 and 505 underpinned the motoring experience for generations of families and executives, and this all-new 508 will once again place Peugeot at the forefront of the segment.”

Sales of the 508 took a hit last year ahead of the new model's release, with 141 examples sold to the end of 2017, representing a 14.5 per cent decrease over the 165 deliveries made in 2016.

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