Specification: Peugeot 3008 Allure
Engine: 1,598cc, 4-cyl. Inline, 16-valve, DOHC, twin-scroll turbocharged, VVT | Power: 165hp @ 6,000rpm Torque: 240 @ 1,400rpm | Drivetrain: 6-speed automatic, front-wheel drive | Performance: 205kph max speed | Fuel consumption: 7.9l/100km | Price: RM170,288.00 OTR without insurance

The Peugeot 3008 is the French carmaker’s C-Segment compact crossover SUV that sits between the larger 5008 and the chic-er 2008. We’ve driven the 5008 and the 2008, and found them to be outstanding crossover SUVs in more ways than one. So, can the 3008 offer the best of all worlds, or is it middling at best?

First, the looks. The 3008 wears all the design hallmarks that make it a modern Peugeot. From the frameless grille that seamlessly integrates the LED headlights and the DRLs to the 3D Lion Claw rear lights, the French SUV effortlessly stands out from the crowd.

Perhaps owing to its dimensions, the 3008 is visually pleasing. A wider grill than the 2008 and a steeper rear than the 5008 form a sportier stance in the 3008. The 18-inch Los Angeles Alloy Wheels also add dynamism to the SUV’s visuals.

The 3008’s interior mirrors its stablemates, so it won’t take any time at all to get used to it. It is a simple layout with the standard 10-inch touchscreen monitor on top, an array of buttons in the middle and a wireless charger-slash-cubby-hole at the bottom of the centre stack. Most of the car’s functions are hidden behind the screen, including controls for the air-conditioning, and can be quickly accessed with one of the buttons on the shelf. The word ‘quickly’ is used loosely because it’s an added step to press the button and then the screen to set the air-con fan speed or temperature.

Nevertheless, the 3008 is a comfortable place to be in. Materials of high quality that you can see and feel are fitted throughout the cabin. And the 3008’s interior is also not short on textures that play with the senses. There’s ample room in here and more legroom for the backseat passengers. The cargo space is quite respectable, offering 591 litres with the rear seats up and 1,670 litres with the seats down.

A 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine provides power to the 3008, with a six-speed automatic that makes sure only the right amount of horses goes to the front wheels. It is a smooth-shifting partnership that lets the 3008 get up to highway speeds as effortlessly as overtaking the vehicle in front. Although it won’t push you into your seat, the 165hp and 240Nm are enough to make the SUV feel fast.

The ride on the 3008 is supple enough to absorb the undulations of the road without upsetting the passengers and firm enough to make stitching up corners enjoyable. Still, driving this like one would a hatchback will have the 3008 yields pronounced body roll, especially in tighter corners.

If you’re waiting for the punchline, something that will wow you into buying the Peugeot 3008 – there’s none. Not that the SUV isn’t good, but it doesn’t offer more than the competition.

Not to say that the SUV isn’t good, but the 3008 does not have a highlight feature that pips it above the competition. Truly, we’ve been spoilt for choice. The SUV buffet spread we have is indeed impressive which makes choosing one difficult. With an on-the-road price of RM170,288.00, it is hard to recommend an SUV with just a pretty face. In fact, for a bit more money, you can have the Peugeot 5008 that blends sportiness and utility into one handsome package.