Review: The 2022 Peugeot 5008 facelift may be the most honest 7-seater SUV on sale in Malaysia today
Sanjay · Aug 12, 2022 08:00 PM
The VW Tiguan Allspace suddenly finds itself in quite a pickle. For a while it sat as a solid Continental alternative to whatever 7-seaters the Japanese could muster, but then came along this locally-assembed (CKD Gurun, Kedah) 2022 Peugeot 5008; a big lion that's more than happy to pounce on customers wandering away from the VW's prying eyes.
Exterior: Not an MPV, now a crossover
In the fantastic 3008 (review here) Peugeot had a good platform on which to base the new 5008, and from the front-end towards the back for the driver's door it's essentially a splitting image of the latter.
Like its smaller sibling, this has traded its pudgy MPV looks for a neater, conventional crossover shape. Good looks are good for business, so in this aspect this facelifted 5008 wins more than a few points.
Ours is in the sole Allure trim; meaning snazzy 18-inch wheels, full-LED head- and taillights, chrome garnishes, and a sunroof.
Interior: Space-age superstardom
Two configurable screens are housed on the dashboard, one for the all-digital instruments, and the other 10-inch unit for infotainment use. Operating them is smooth and logical, and their updated graphics and contrast makes them easy to see even under glaring Malaysian sun.
Housed below the centre stack are a row of Real ButtonsTM that controls the air-conditioning and navigation, and while we're glad they're there, the execution remains a little wonky. Everything is still squirrelled away in the screen; and pressing these buttons merely bring you to their menus, and fiddling with touchscreens while driving isn't quite a great idea.
Operating touchscreens while driving is a far from intuitive experience, and we don't like how things get messy even if you want to return to Android Auto/Apple CarPlay navigation – there's no back or home buttons, so you need to remember a roundabout two- or three-button combination.
Audio quality – including microphone – is one of the best we've ever tested, with great clarity and a well-balanced sound that gives more than enough aural pleasure. Multi-colour ambient lighting is something that elevates the entire experience too.
Another thing that irks us is the driving position. The 5008 requires you to sit a bit differently, because the dials are designed to be read over the top of the small, lozenge-shaped steering wheel, and not through it as you would in most cars.
This is an answer to a problem no-one seems to have, not to mention it'll take a while to get used to it. Plus, if you're a certain height, the wheel rim blocks the dials, and that's quite annoying.
Cabin space: Properly roomy
Thankfully however the design and all its little quirks do not impinge on space. Tilt and telescopic steering provides enough tailoring to get comfortable, and the adjustable lumbar support helps make life behind the wheel even more agreeable.
Much like the 5-seater 3008, space in the 5008 is commendable. Legroom in the middle row is more than fine, plenty of space for long legs even when the front seats are slid all the way back.
Shoulder room is properly good – we'd say it's one of the better SUVs for three abreast seating in the centre row – and adding to the comfort is a flat floor, meaning no awkward hump for the passengers to straddle.
The 5008 comes with a third row of fold-out seats as standard, effectively distilling it in a category that's also got the Tiguan Allspace and Mazda CX-8.
Unlike those two, these occassional seats suit adults, though kids will have a comfier time. If it comes to it, grown ups can stomach them for a short trip, and in fact it would be a preferable experience than being cooped up in the even tigher last row of its segment rivals.
While you'll struggle to fit gloves into the glovebox, the rest of the storage options are cavernous and varied. There's a big box right under the front central armrest, large enough to keep two 1.5-litre bottles.
You'll also find large cupholders throughout, and the door bins are massive. It's nice that they're carpeted inside, so loose items won't dance about and rattle.
Boot space with the third row seats down is a healthy 952 litres, paltrifying the Tiguan Allspace and CX-8's 700- and 742 litres respectively. Stowing the third row away nets 2,042 litres in the Pug, well ahead of the VW's 1,775 litres. Bigger than the Mazda's 1,727 litres too.
Driving: Beyond just 'capable'
Peugeot's pick of the litter for Malaysia is the sole 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine, with the four-cylinder making 165 PS and 240 Nm. Choices in other markets vary from diesel to three-cylinder mills; but it's not a complication we'll contend with here.
However we'll have to grasp the fact that it's still the older Turbo High Pressure (THP) engine, and not the newer, more powerful yet more efficient PureTech range available overseas. Perhaps we'll finally get them once a new generation is out.
Forbidden fruits aside, what we have now is already plenty good. The mill is very refined, and when you drop the hammer there's a nice throaty sound to it. It does feel rather sedate under normal driving conditions however, though it will do you just fine for daily drives.
On the other hand there's a slightly awkward characteristic with the 6-speed Aisin-sourced automatic transmission. For the most part it's a slick shifter but it can occassionally be caught hesitating in first gear like a dual-clutch (DCT) would, especially when creeping in traffic.
The small steering wheel is part of Peugeot's i-Cockpit philosophy, and that shows in the way how the centre stack and infotainment are canted towards the driver. It's nice to have such a cocooning, 'driver-centric' take to an SUV's cabin.
Speaking of which, the 5008 remains a good steer, even if its one-size-too-small tiller takes acclimatising to. The pro to this is that the steering wheel is quick, making parking when you need to go lock-to-lock quickly, a breeze.
The Peugeot 5008 is pretty brisk to accelerate, and just as sharp under braking. 0-100 km/h is dispatched in 10.48 seconds, and stopping from therein takes only 42.71 meters in 3.1 seconds.
Fuel consumption could be better however, as the 5008 clocks in 11.4 litres/100 km. Our 104 km test journey was split between 60% highways and 40% urban roads.
Comfort: Strikes a fine balance
The relatively soft-sprung but well-controlled ride makes the 2022 Peugeot 5008 one of the best-driving SUVs in its class. Shod of oversized wheels, the 18-inch units here are a sensible choice, comfortably smoothening pockmarked roads, and only thumping on particularly gargantuan potholes.
At highway speeds it's a planted cruiser, and we say it even has an edge over the generally comfortable (but stiffer) Tiguan Allspace. If you're after a more restful long-distance machine, the Mazda CX-8 betters it for high-speed waft, but that gets slightly jiggly at low-speed situations.
Body control and grip is adequate – even if you whip a corner a bit too fast, your rear passengers won't be all shaken – but for the most part the Peugeot 5008 is easy to drive, capable, and surefooted.
2022 Peugeot 5008 cabin noise
Idle, A/C on
Noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) levels are suitably low in the 5008. Everything is well put-together so no random rattles or vibrations, and only the faintest of wind noise whooshes in the otherwise hush interior at highway speeds.
Conclusion: A lion you can get close to
At RM 183,288, the Peugeot 5008 hasn't got a pricing edge against the Tiguan Allspace range (the newly-launched Life variant is priced at RM 173,590; the Elegance, RM 180,590), though it undercuts the RM 185,360 CX-8 2.5G Mid.
For what it's worth though, it's still a very competitive price point. You get more power than the VW, and though kit count is generally give-and-take between the three of them, the 5008 claws vital points with an actually-functional third row. And it looks fantastic!
Plus, there's good aftersales backing for the Peugeot, as it's bundled with a 5-year/100k km warranty with 5 years/100k km free scheduled maintenance baked in.
What sucks is that all three are quite weak in the active safety (ADAS) department, with the 5008 and Tiguan Allspace not getting even autonomous emergency braking (AEB), which is available on the CX-8 2.5 High and above.
When all's said and done though, the 5008 has proven to be quite a well-rounded option. For a long time, the silver lion has been a little famished in Malaysia, but between this and the similarly-brilliant 3008, we think it'll be hungry no more.
With humble beginnings collecting diecast models and spending hours virtually tuning dream cars on the computer, his love of cars has delightfully transformed into a career. Sanjay enjoys how the same passion for cars transcends boundaries and brings people together.