Peugeot 408 – All about the sedan that becomes an SUV (or the opposite?)

Peugeot lifts the veil on its brand new 408, halfway between a sedan and an SUV, whose engines range from 130 to 225 hp (no diesel!). It will be produced in Mulhouse from the end of 2022 and will arrive on the roads in 2023. The prices have not yet been announced.

That’s it, after months of all kinds of teasers and rumors, here it is the brand new Peugeot 408. And let’s dispel any doubt immediately: it has nothing to do with the 408 destined for China which was unveiled a few days. The latter is an evolution of the notchback sedan that has existed for some time in the Middle Kingdom. The 408 coming to us will actually also be produced in China, in Chengdu, and marketed locally, with no difference from ours, except for the name: 408 X.

408 notchback for China

Peugeot 408 live pictures

New Peugeot 408 (which will be called 408 X in China)

All confusion cleared up between the two, let’s get to the heart of the matter. Because from the outset the new Peugeot 408 challenges. Is it the blue “Obsession Blue” that changes color depending on the angle of view? Or its relatively impressive dimensions despite its “coupé” physique? A bit of both. Peugeot speaks to us of a “disruptive” model, a marketing term to explain that it is indeed a completely new model in the range, which stands out from everything that is currently being done.

Peugeot 408 (2023)

Between a 308 and a 3008

4.69 meters. This is the size of this new Peugeot 408, which places it above the 308 (4.36 m), the 3008 (4.44 m) and even a 5008 (4.64 m) ! Yet visually, the 408 blurs the codes by displaying a sedan line fast back (roofline that runs to the stern, with no visible trunk), but a slightly elevated SUV-style position. It is only 4 cm higher than a 308, but still 8 cm than the 508.

Peugeot 408 live pictures

For those who are wondering if this 408 could not cannibalize the sales of a 508, Peugeot explains that the latter is positioned on the D segment, when the newcomer remains on the C segment, even if at the very top of its last .

Fake coupe, real sedan

As Pierre-Paul Mattei, in charge of the style of the model, explained to us in the video, this new Peugeot 408 adopts aesthetic tricks to play on the codes of sedans and SUVs. We immediately notice the exposed plastic wheel arches which, whatever the finish, are never body colour. The angular style also makes it possible to visually widen the 408, in particular at the level of the rear fenders.

Peugeot 408 (2023)
Peugeot 408 (2023)
Peugeot 408 (2023)

The rims will range from 17 to 20 inches, 20 inches as on the model presented, with a very particular design, which gives an impressive visual effect, both when stationary and when driving.

And then for the sedan side, we notice that the receding line of the roof towards the rear, accentuated by a false quarter panel on the rear pillars, has a tailgate hinge which is in fact very set back. On the tail side, thanks to a “cat ears” style cap, it keeps a dynamic visual effect. And on the front side, it allows you to keep roominess inside for the rear passengers.

Peugeot 408 (2023)

space on board

For once, let’s start by getting into the back of this Peugeot 408. The doors are surprisingly large, making access easier, and you sit on a back seat that leaves plenty of leg room, while that even the headroom is generous.

Peugeot 408 live pictures

At the front, however, no surprise, it’s a copy-and-paste or almost of the last Peugeot 308, the dashboard having initially been developed for the two models, even if the compact sedan inherited the first. We find the famous i-Cockpit with its small steering wheel, its configurable 10-inch 3D effect instrumentation screen (GT finish), the central 10-inch infotainment screen as well, and the i-toggles, these numerical shortcuts under the screen, also configurable.

Peugeot 408 live pictures
Peugeot 408 live pictures

On the technology side, Peugeot specifies that its new 408 includes 4 USB-C ports, Wi-Fi telephone mirroring, the possibility of having two Bluetooth telephones, remote “OTA” (over the air) system updates , and the Focal Premium audio system with 10 speakers and a 690 W 12-way amplifier.

A final word on the trunk, which is surprisingly generous for this type of coupé sedan. Count from 536 to 1611 liters (bench seat 2/3-1/3 folded down) maximum. Subtract 60 liters on plug-in hybrid versions.

Peugeot 408 live pictures

No diesel but an electric 408!

The new Peugeot 408 will not have a diesel engine. Never. In total, five engines have been announced, four of which concern us directly:

  • a petrol engine Pure Tech from 130 horsepower (3 cylinders, 1.2 liter)
  • a plug-in hybrid engine of 180 horsepower (PureTech 150 hp + electric 81 kW / 2 wheel drive)
  • a plug-in hybrid engine of 225 horsepower (PureTech 180 hp + electric 81 kW / 2 wheel drive)
  • a 100% electric version announced, but it will arrive later (no technical info)
Peugeot 408 (2023)

Note that the thermal engines will be associated with an 8-speed automatic transmission.

The fourth engine will be a 215 horsepower petrol engine that does not meet Euro6 standards and will be marketed outside European markets.

Around €35,000

Offered in two finishes, Allure and GT, and six different body colors (blue, grey, red, white and black), the new Peugeot 408 will be produced in the Mulhouse plant from the end of 2022, for a arrival on the market scheduled for early 2023.

For the moment, the prices of the Peugeot 408 have not yet been announced but given the positioning at the top of the C segment, they should be above those of a 308 or a 3008, and just below those of the 508, i.e. around €35,000 (PureTech 130).

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