Packing a premium punch
From the same stable as the impressive 508 Fastback comes Peugeot’s 508 SW estate
We could have predicted that the sleek and sexy Peugeot 508 would spawn a more practical estate model. After all, this market segment is peppered with the things - and the 508 SW sits bang smack in between more workaday models such as the Skoda Superb, and premium offerings like the BMW 3 Series. At least that’s what Peugeot wants you to think. In reality, it’s pitching the 508 SW as a design-focused lifestyle estate the sort of car you’d buy if a VW Passat is too straight-laced. WHAT’S NEW? Unsurprisingly, the front end is identical to the Fastback model. The difference is hanging over the rear wheels - 40mm of it, in fact, which doesn’t sound a great deal. The increased height also means the SW sits 17mm higher than its Fastback sibling, with a boxier rear. Boot space is now 530 litres, a fair whack larger than the 487 litres of the Fastback - and with the rear seats folded, 1,780 litres is liberated compared to the saloon’s 1,537 litres. WHAT’S IT LIKE TO DRIVE? The 508 SW doesn’t suffer at all for its bulkier bottom compared to the Fastback model. There’s little doubt this is one of the most dynamic models - GTI aside - that Peugeot’s produced in years, and it’s really rather good even when compared with premium rivals. Down a twisting B road, the 508 SW is genuinely enjoyable, while it’s also a very comfortable cruiser. WHAT’S IT LIKE INSIDE? The 508 SW lifts its interior almost unchanged from the Fastback model, which means you get the latest evolution of Peugeot’s i-Cockpit dashboard system. That’s definitely a good thing - the combination of a squashed steering wheel and high-set dials has evolved since it was first introduced on the 208, and it’s now a really comfortable place to sit and spend time. WHAT’S THE SPEC LIKE? Peugeot hasn’t revealed full UK specifications for the 508 SW just yet, but it’s a fair guess that trim levels will be similar to the Fastback. All cars get the i-Cockpit with a touchscreen infotainment display, ‘Connected’ navigation, dual-zone climate control, rear parking sensors and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. THE VERDICT The Peugeot 508 SW has the potential to be a serious player in this class - it looks fantastic, drives well, and has more personality than many of its rivals. That does come at a price though, and the SW is expected to be a couple of thousand pounds more than the already expensive Fastback. Time will tell whether this move pays off for Peugeot.