Peugeot 4008

French Style with Japanese Spirit

We live in a region, such as the Middle East, where the 4WD or SUV dominate the majority of the market. It's true, either you believe it or not. If you visit the Levant such as Lebanon, Syria or Jordan, these are the perfect locations for off-road tracks in difference road conditions: rock, mud, snow and asphalt. For more action, you have to jump somewhere in the Gulf to hunt the sand dunes.

I will be quite sincere; I have always been a bit edgy when driving small cars. Their size intimidates me and I frequently end up feeling like I am driving a small bicycle. But surely in the Levant, where fuel is expensive compared to the Gulf, more people tend to have a small car at home - but an SUV or 4x4 is a must.

Driving Impressions
I flew to Lisbon, capital of Portugal, to tender the all-new 4008 from Peugeot. Our test drive city was Cascais, a very beautiful and touristic city on the ocean coast.

The 4008 is the third car to be produced by the joint venture between the French brand and Japan's Mitsubishi - after the Mitsubishi Outlander/Peugeot 4007 and Mitsubishi i-MiEV/Peugeot iOn. Based on the Mitsubishi ASX, Peugeot is extremely aware of how vital the compact SUV class is and has made a much better attempt to distinguish the two cars this time around. Contrasting the rather smallest changes to the 4007 compared to the Outlander, the 4008 features far more fundamental variations.

The Peugeot 4008 is available in two levels, the Active or Allure, with five variants depending on the transmission and driving preferences. The Active comes with 2.0 2WD manual or is available as a 2.0 2WD CVT. For those who want the All-Wheel Drive, there is the 2.0 Active AWD CVT or the 2.0 Active AWD manual. The height of luxury sits with the 2.0 Allure AWD CVT which was my demo car.

The most perceptible feature in driving the Peugeot 4008 is the 4WD system which allows the driver to choose between 2WD, 4WD or 4WD-lock modes. The 2WD mode relies on front wheel drive only for optimized fuel consumption and is appropriate for dry roads where there is no risk of losing grip. However, I found the 2WD mode to be quite rough and a little unsteady to drive around inside the city. Once I switched over to 4WD, I was right at home. The 4WD mode is for normal handling across changing surfaces and was a much smoother, more enjoyable to drive.

At low speeds through Portuguese urban roads, the Peugeot 4008 handles well. Rev hard and fast or try to push up a hill and it will whine with a grunt, only then did I feel that the engine is a little bit underpowered. This frequently requires manually changing the gears which is simple enough with the enclosure of gear paddles on the steering wheel. Even if you're in automatic drive, a flick will move the gears up or down.

Regarding the safety, Peugeot has put it at the top of its 4008 agenda with all variants scoring five stars and a reversing camera. This is on top of several other major and minor safety features.

Verdict
Our fathers and mothers will love the 4008. It is a low-cost fixed-price which serves as a major contemplation. The 4008 is classy of its kind at an affordable price with no doubts. But if you seriously plan to buy it, drive it off-road for a test first so you don't end up expecting more than what you get. It will compete alongside the Volkswagen Tiguan, Mitsubishi ASX, Mazda CX-5 and Subaru XV.

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