Just restyled, the Peugeot 508 will have a lot to do to keep up with the 408, which has recently arrived in the catalogue. First virtual comparison between the two Lionesses.
Despite declining sales, the Peugeot 508 continues its career unlike other sedans such as the Renault Talisman or Volkswagen Passat, whose production has recently stopped. The Peugeot sedan even benefits from a restyling after five years of career, just to remain armed against those who remain… and especially those who arrive! This is the case of the Peugeot 408, an SUV-style raised sedan, with wide body protections and a fastback line for a total mix of genres.
Just marketed, the Peugeot 408 therefore walks a little on the flower beds of the 508 with similar dimensions: 4.69 m long for the crossover, against 4.75 m for the second generation 508. The wheelbase is common to both models (2.79 m), despite a different technical basis. The 408 is indeed derived from the Peugeot 308, and takes a lot of it including its EMP2 platform stretched to the maximum.
Style: very different personalities
However, the two Peugeots stand out for their philosophy and their style: divisive and very sharp for the new 408, wiser and classic for the 508, also available as a 508 SW station wagon. The 508 allowed itself a few fantasies during its restyling, such as the arrival of a reworked grille incorporating the new Lion logo and Peugeot 9X8-style triple claws in the extension of the headlights. The element replaces the single luminous croc as a daytime running light, a Peugeot trademark that it inaugurated at its launch in 2018.
On board, the two models also each have their own personality. The 408 fully incorporates the dashboard of the little sister 308, with a double central screen displaying customizable shortcuts in the lower part, while the digital counters in height and the small steering wheel are an integral part of the i-Cockpit architecture. An architecture also present in the 508 sedan, but slightly different. Here, it’s still the old generation, with digital counters that don’t benefit from 3D technology (although available on the 208 and 308!), and a 10-inch central screen, which does benefit from a new, more responsive environment. The rather massive center console has cleared the way with the replacement of the old “Cobra” automatic gearbox lever by a small selector, as on the 408.
Engines: a common core but specific features for the 508
On the engine side, the two models are marked at the bottom, or almost. The 408 ignores the diesel, when the 508 still offers a 130 hp BlueHDI for big wheels. In essence, both models feature the same three-cylinder 1.2 PureTech 130 hp (associated with an EAT8 automatic transmission) well known to the Stellantis group. For the moment, they are not yet entitled to the new generation of 100 and 130 hp micro-hybrid blocks, yet inaugurated by the 3008 and 5008 a few weeks ago. The 508 and 408 also benefit from two rechargeable hybrid engines, 180 and 225 hp. The 180 hp version is just arriving on the restyled 508, after integrating other models from the group (Citroën C5 X and C5 Aircross, Opel Astra, Peugeot 308 and 408, etc.).
For those who want more power, the 508 also stands out with its PSE version (for Peugeot Sport Engineered) renewed during the restyling despite very low volumes. Equipped with a 360 hp rechargeable hybrid (also seen on the DS7 and DS9), the 508 PSE also receives specific cosmetic elements, such as a new grille, deflectors on the shields or specific rims and badges. For the moment, Peugeot does not plan to decline the recipe on a 408 PSE.
Price: the most affordable 408
The updated 508 will be marketed from June 2023, and does not yet display its prices. But it should be the most expensive of the duo, and reach 42,000 € at entry level. Plug-in hybrids should come close to or even exceed €50,000. Until now, the sedan was displayed from €43,420 with the 130 hp petrol and Allure Pack finish, after significant inflation. For the record, the sedan only asked for €32,300 when it was launched in 2018! The 408 starts at €37,350 with the same engine and an Allure finish. The 180 hp plug-in hybrid version requires at least €45,450, and the 225 hp version is displayed at €48,300.
Photos : DR.
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