Peugeot 208 second-hand buyers’ guide

A dash of French flair elevates the Peugeot 208 above your average city runabout. But how do second-hand Peugeot 208 cars hold up on the market today?

Peugeot 208 parked on side of road.

The Peugeot 208 brings more style and character to the light car class than the average city runabout. It is a smart-looking car with French flair and many appealing attributes that do, however, sit alongside a few blemishes in the cabin layout. Yet this individuality can be a big part of its appeal. Although the Peugeot 208 is well-equipped, car running costs are a little higher than for similar-sized Korean and Japanese models.

Peugeot 208 second-hand prices

Peugeot 208 Active manual (2012-15): $8900-$11,400
Peugeot 208 Active auto (2012-16): $10,500-$17,300
Peugeot 208 Access auto (2015-16): $12,500-$13,900
Peugeot 208 Allure auto (2012-16): $12,100-$20,300
Peugeot 208 GTi manual (2013-16): $16,900-$23,100

Approximate Glass’s Guide prices.

Peugeot 208 on flat road.

Used Peugeot 208 cars today

Replacing the Peugeot 207 model at the end of 2012, the Peugeot 208 arrived with a choice of two body styles, three engines and four equipment levels. The GTi hot hatch was added in August 2013, and then the range had a makeover in October 2015.

None of the 208 Peugeot versions sold in massive numbers, so you may need to shop around to find the variant you want. The mid-level Peugeot Allure five-door hatch is the most popular model on the used market.

Early Peugeot Allure cars had a 1.6-litre naturally-aspirated four-cylinder petrol engine that delivered respectable performance. In the October 2015 upgrade, an 81kW three-cylinder 1.2-litre turbo engine was introduced with a six-speed automatic (previously the auto option was four-speed). It is an auto with gear ratios and shift calibrations set up to achieve low fuel consumption. In manual versions, the 1.2-litre engine’s output is not as powerful, producing only 60kW.

Drivability of the 1.2-litre turbo is good for general use, but three-cylinder engines are inherently less smooth than four-cylinder units. In the five-speed manual models the gearshift action is a touch clunky. If performance is a preference, higher-spec models with a 1.6-litre turbo are an option. While all engines are relatively fuel-efficient, they do require premium petrol.

 

Blue Peugeot 208.

Interior

For a light car, front-seat space is good, but compromises are needed to comfortably accommodate adults in the rear. The dash layout is something of an acquired taste. The steering wheel can block some drivers’ view of the high-mounted but narrow instrument panel, yet the alternative is to set the steering wheel lower than may be desired.

The boot is a useful size and split-fold rear seats add versatility, and to Peugeot’s credit the 208 carries a full-size spare wheel. Standard equipment in the 2015 base-model Access, however, is something of a mixed bag, missing out on a few features we have come to expect these days. For example, it still had wind-up rear windows.

French Peugeot 208 car driving at night.

Peugeot 208 common problems?

If you have an eye on a particular used Peugeot 208 that’s for sale, check that it has an up-to-date service history, preferably with the work done by a Peugeot specialist. There appears to have been a noticeable improvement in quality and reliability when Peugeot moved up from 207 to 208, and it got better again with the upgraded model.

We have heard of issues with the valves and timing chains on the basic 1.6-litre turbo engines (not the GTi versions). The 1.2-litre, three-cylinder engines have a timing belt that requires replacement every nine years or 180,000km, which is better than most, but you will still need to budget for it.

When testing automatic versions, take note of the transmission operation, as major repairs can be expensive. In manual Peugeot 208 versions, check the clutch operation.

There was a safety recall in June 2014 for a suspension fault. Most should have been rectified by now but it is worth checking with a Peugeot car dealer to make sure the vehicle you are looking at has been repaired.

Fuel consumption

1.2-litre models: 5.0-7.5L/100km.

1.6-litre models: 7.0-9.5L/100km.

1.6-litre turbos: 7.0-11.0L/100km.
 

Safety

The 4cyl 5dr hatches have a five-star ANCAP rating. Other variants are unrated.
 

Towing

820kg to 1150kg, depending on variant, but 46kg towball load only.

* More RACV road tests and car reviews.

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Written by Greg Hill
December 14, 2017