Peugeot 508 Review & Prices

The Peugeot 508 has its alternatives licked on looks both inside and out, plus it's comfy to drive – but it’s not as spacious or practical as other family cars

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Reviewed by Carwow after extensive testing of the vehicle.

What's good

  • Looks cool
  • Smart interior
  • Comfortable to drive

What's not so good

  • Cramped back seats
  • Build quality isn’t rock solid
  • Small steering wheel won’t suit everyone

Find out more about the Peugeot 508

Is the Peugeot 508 a good car?

If you need a large family car, but don’t want to be go for the boring side of sensible just yet, the Peugeot 508 could be the model for you. If a Volkswagen Passat is a smart shirt-and-chinos combo, the 508 is more of a sharp Givenchy suit, probably worn by a model smoking Gauloise outside a Left Bank cafe. It’s tres cool.

And an update in 2023 means it's even better looking than before. The ultra-slim headlights blend into daytime running lights that look like they've been etched by a claw strike from a big lion. The grille blends into the bodywork, which is a unique look, while the rear LED lights have a new design with three angled lines.

But while its stylish five-door hatchback/saloon/coupe body looks great – and there's a more practical yet still very fancy-looking 508 SW estate version, too – the back seats are noticeably more cramped than in alternatives such as the Skoda Superb or Volkswagen Passat. It's an appealing option in a dwindling selection of saloon-style models, though; former options such as the Ford Mondeo and Vauxhall Insignia have been dropped due to falling sales.

Okay, so you might have to put up with a few complaints from tall passengers in the back, but you certainly can’t accuse the Peugeot 508’s interior of being boring. Its dashboard design is far more interesting than most alternatives and all models come with two large infotainment screens that make the cabin look bang-up-to-date.

If you’re more interested in old-fashioned, solid build quality, however, the Peugeot 508 might not be the car for you. It’s certainly not terrible, but the Peugeot’s materials don’t feel as consistently brilliant as those in a Skoda Superb. But driving the Peugeot 508 feels much sportier than pottering about in the Skoda thanks to the 508’s low-set driving position. Not everyone will be a fan of its small steering wheel, though.

If you can see past the fact it's a bit cramped inside, the Peugeot 508 is a comfortable family car that really stands out from the crowd

The boot isn’t the biggest – look to a Superb if that is what matters most to you – but the 508’s large hatchback door makes loading bulky items relatively easy, even if you do have to lift them over a slight boot lip.

So, the Peugeot 508’s practicality might not be particularly impressive, but if you’re considering a sporty-looking saloon car, you’ll likely have more than a passing interest in how it drives – and you won’t be too disappointed. The Peugeot 508 is fun to drive down a twisty road, but also manages to smooth out bumps quite effectively too. There's also a sporty Peugeot Sport Engineered (PSE) version if you want more ability in the bends.

The 508 isn’t quite so clever when it comes to autonomous driving tech, however. It’s available with active cruise control and lane assist, but these systems aren’t as sophisticated as those you’ll find in a Volvo V60.

The engine lineup is limited now to one petrol and one hybrid, plus a more powerful hybrid system in the sporty PSE. The entry-level engine is a 1.2-litre petrol with 131hp that gets up to 50mpg in official tests. However, for ultimate fuel economy, you can drive around 40 miles on electricity alone with the 225hp plug-in hybrid engine. You'll have to keep the batteries topped up and drive like a saint to achieve its official 274mpg economy figure, though.

There will be no saintly driving in the other plug-in version, the 360hp 508 PSE. Think of it as the 508’s answer to the BMW M340i in that it's sportier than the regular model, but it's not supposed to be a hardcore performance car.

Other family cars are better built and more spacious, but if that all sounds a bit too ‘pipe and slippers’ for you, then the 508’s stylish design and fun drive make it worthy of a place on your shortlist. Check out how much you could save in the Peugeot 508 deals section. There are also a number of used Peugeot 508s available and you can browse other used Peugeot models from our network of trusted dealers. When it's time to sell your current car, carwow can help with that, too.

How much is the Peugeot 508?

The Peugeot 508 has a RRP range of £34,185 to £46,440. However, with Carwow you can save on average £8,627. Prices start at £26,275 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £423. The price of a used Peugeot 508 on Carwow starts at £13,235.

Our most popular versions of the Peugeot 508 are:

Model version Carwow price from
1.2 PureTech Allure 5dr EAT8 £26,275 Compare offers

By and large, the Peugeot 508 is priced sensibly for a mid-sized family saloon. It’s a little more expensive — model for model — than the Skoda Superb and loses out badly in terms of space. Then again, the Peugeot is a much more stylish and chic-looking car than the Skoda, so if style matters to you, you won’t feel too badly done by.

The 508 is also much, much more affordable than the Volkswagen Arteon, which is possibly its most similar car in conceptual terms, being as it’s also a low, sleek four-door that’s kind of pretending to be a coupe (frameless doors and all). The 508 holds an almost £10,000 price advantage over an Arteon and you’ll feel pretty upset paying that premium when you twig that the Arteon is just a VW Passat with fancy bodywork. 

Peugeot would also like to think that the 508 is stylish enough to compete with the likes of the BMW 3 Series, and if you go along with that then it’s a few grand cheaper than the cheapest 320i.

Performance and drive comfort

The Peugeot 508 is pleasant to drive and is comfortable over rough roads, but it's not as sporty as its coupe-like styling suggests

In town

In spite of the 508’s steeply angled windscreen, and its low and sporty driving position, the view out of the front is actually pretty good. What’s less good is the chunky windscreen pillar, which you end up having to crane your head around to make sure you’re not about to flatten a cyclist. The rear view is also pretty dreadful, with a tiny rear window and massive pillars at the back. There is a parking camera, and on higher-spec versions you get an all-round ‘top-down’ camera too.

The 508 gets an eight-speed automatic gearbox as standard, which is good because it is smooth and easy to use — especially around town. You do get gear change paddles but there’s an annoying delay between clicking them and the gearbox actually doing anything. 

Standard models have suspension that feels a bit firm around town, but that improves a lot if you upgrade to the optional adaptive suspension. The plug-in hybrid version is very good around town thanks to being able to run on nice, smooth electric power for up to 42 miles, and all versions have light steering and a reasonable turning circle so parking’s not too hard. 

On the motorway

If you’re doing lots of motorway miles, go for the petrol engine because it’s pretty frugal, even though it feels a bit underpowered on bigger roads. The plug-in hybrid can get quite thirsty on long runs because you will drain the battery pretty quickly. If you're a very high-mileage driver you might find the diesel offered on pre-2023 update models will be a better option, though you will have to buy used.

Refinement is generally good, and surprisingly given the frameless door glass, there’s not a lot of wind noise. You will hear a bit of tyre and road roar, but that’s about it. 

The suspension feels smoother on bigger roads, but there is still an annoying ‘whump’ if you hit a pothole, and it reverberates up through the bodywork, which isn’t nice. The 508 does come standard with lane keeping steering and cruise control, but you have to upgrade to the GT model to get radar-guided cruise control. Both systems are good, but not as sharp in their reactions as some rivals, although rather nicely the lane-keeping assist can be programmed to keep you to one side of the lane, leaving space for motorbikes and cyclists. How thoughtful.

On a twisty road

The 508’s small steering wheel will always be slightly controversial, but it does make the steering feel quite sharp and reactive. However, that’s a bit of an illusion, because the Peugeot isn’t built to corner quickly. Once you're tuned into the small wheel, you realise it's actually quite lazy in the way it responds to your steering inputs, which encourages a more laid back driving style.

It’s not as sporty as it initially feels, nor as sporty as it looks. Is it leading you on with that styling?  Maybe a bit, but overall the 508 is still a pretty good thing to drive. 

If you want very, very good then check out the 508 PSE. This comes only as a plug-in hybrid with 360hp, four-wheel drive, and a chassis tuned by the people who make Peugeot’s Le Mans racing cars. It’s pretty awesome in the corners, with way more grip and poise than the standard 508. It is very pricey, though.

Space and practicality

The boot isn't as big as the Skoda Superb and rear seat space is poor, but front seat practicality is better

The 508 gets useful storage space in its big, sweeping centre console with a lidded cubby that can take a mobile phone, and two good-sized cupholders behind the gear shifter. Actually slightly too good-sized — they’re a bit deep for a small coffee cup. There’s another big storage bin under the butterfly-style armrest, and the door bins are fine, if a little bit shallow. There’s also another open storage area under the centre console, down by your knees. Down there, you’ll find a wireless phone charger and two USB sockets but it’s kind of hidden from view and it’s quite hard to reach anything that’s stored down there. The glovebox, as is traditional for right-hand-drive Peugeots, is tiny to the point of being useless.

Space in the back seats

Things are much less impressive in the back seats. In fact, the 508 is pretty cramped and you really pay for that racy roofline. The door opening is a decent size, so wrestling a child seat in and out is fine (and you do get ISOFIX in the back and in the front passenger seat, albeit the anchors have really awkward zipped covers) but rear headroom for tall passengers is pretty awful. Worse, Peugeot has stuck the rear coat hook up by where the rear passenger’s head will be, so it’s useless if you have someone in the back. Legroom is actually okay, but there’s nowhere under the low-set front seat to put your feet, and the seat base is quite short and low-down, so under-thigh support for taller passengers is poor.

Three people in the back? It is possible because the transmission hump isn’t too big, but the headroom for the centre seat passenger is poor and the seat itself is narrow, so it’s a thumbs down. The rear door bins and seat-back nets are small too, but at least you do get two USB sockets for those in the rear, and an armrest with cupholders. Maybe use those for a rechargeable light, as it’s pretty dark in the back. You also need to watch the rear doors — shove them open with a bit of force and they spring back suddenly on the hinges. Speaking of doors, in spite of the frameless side glass, the rear doors have a fixed rear quarter light which stays in place when the side glass is wound down, and which not only looks awkward, it also really gets in the way if you’re trying to squeeze in or out in a tight parking space.

Boot space

The 508 fastback’s 478-litre boot is OK, but it’s dwarfed by the massive 625 litres you’ll get in a Skoda Superb. Impressively, though, the 508 doesn’t lose boot space if you go for the plug-in hybrid version as the battery is cleverly packed away so it doesn’t intrude. There is a slight load lip for the boot, but it’s not too bad, although the parcel shelf is really annoying. It’s a fixed, two-part shelf which is a faff to remove, and when you do there’s nowhere in the car to store it so you just have to leave it at home or abandon it in the bushes. Under the boot floor, there is a space-saver spare wheel but if you delete that you can have some under-floor storage. You get the expected tie-down points, luggage hooks, and a 12-volt socket, of course. Folding down the 60:40 split rear seats is annoying, as there’s no lever in the boot to do it, so you have to go around to the rear doors to flip them down. They don’t sit fully flat, which is also annoying, but at least you do get a continuous floor so you can slide heavy items all the way in. There’s also a load-through flap in the rear armrest, but it’s pretty narrow so of limited use unless you’re a skiing enthusiast. If you need more practicality, the handsome 508 SW estate has a 530-litre boot.

Interior style, infotainment and accessories

The cabin looks stylish with some fancy materials, but build quality isn't fantastic and the infotainment is still a little behind the best in class

It’s fair to say that the 508’s cabin is as stylish on the inside as the rest of the car is on the outside. It’s maybe lost its shock value a little, as Peugeot has repeated its style in the likes of the more affordable 2008 crossover and the 308 hatchback, but that multi-layered dash, with its imitation carbon-fibre panels still looks striking and it’s very different to what anyone else is doing. Certainly, it makes the Skoda Superb and Volkswagen Arteon feel very plain inside. 

Quality is pretty good, as all of the upper surfaces are made of nice soft-touch materials and you get nice contrast stitching if you go for optional leather. You will find cheaper plastics low down, though, and when Peugeot does cheap plastics it really does cheap plastics. 

The front seats are very comfy at first, but, if you're tall, they can feel a bit short on support for your legs on a very long journey. And if you are tall, you’ll probably feel more comfortable with the low-set, small steering wheel and high-up instruments, but shorter drivers will need to crank the seat up to be able to see over the steering wheel rim, which kind of spoils the low-slung, sporty effect. 

The 508 comes as standard with a 12.3-inch digital instrument display which has a few different layouts, including one which puts the sat-nav screen right in front of you, which is handy. There’s even an optional ‘night-vision’ camera, which automatically displays a forward view from an infra-red camera at night. It sounds like a gimmick, and kind of is, but the camera can see further than the headlights so there is a safety benefit. 

In the centre of the dash, there’s a standard 10.0-inch screen, which is a nice upgrade on the old 8.0-inch screen found in lower trims. It gets a row of lovely ‘piano key’ shortcut buttons underneath, which bring you straight to important screens such as the air conditioning and sat nav, but the menu layout is still fiddly and we’d much rather have some physical buttons for the climate controls. There are some further shortcut buttons for the heating and ventilation further down, but if you want to just adjust the fan speed, you’ve got to go in through the touchscreen which means taking your eyes off the road for too long.

As of 2023, you get the latest graphics and menu designs, which are a huge improvement on before and a bit easier to use. Easier still is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which are included as standard, so you don't need to use the built-in sat nav and audio systems, though there’s the option of an ear-busting stereo by French audio expert Focal, which is great. Not so great? The USB port for connecting your phone is under the centre console on the left, for French drivers, not on the right for us Brits, so it’s pretty awkward to find. 

There are some other neat features, such as a system that automatically adjusts the cabin lighting and air con to either calm you down (when you’re being frustrated by traffic) or wake you up (such as half way through a long journey) and you can have (very noisy) massaging seats, which aren’t quite as lovely as they sound but which can help you avoid a numb bum on a long run.

MPG, emissions and tax

If you’re looking at this from a tax perspective then the plug-in hybrid is the clear winner. With official CO2 emissions of just 33g/km meaning that company car user-choosers will pay just 14 per cent in Benefit In Kind tax if they go for one. As a private buyer, you’ll pay very little first-year road tax before reverting to the standard rate after that, though the PSE model faces an extra charge in years two to six because it's above the £40,000 threshold.

Peugeot’s claimed electric range on a full charge is up to 42 miles, which is decent but it’ll probably be more like 30 miles in real-world conditions. It’s also put in the shade by the claimed 53 miles that the Volvo V60 PHEV can cover on electric power alone. You can charge the 508 PHEV quickly enough, in around one hour and 45 minutes from a 7kW home wallbox.

Like all PHEVs, the 508 does get thirsty on a long run, but it’s not the worst in this regard — you should be able to average close to or better than 40mpg. The high-performance PSE version will only do a claimed 34 miles on electric power when it’s fully charged, and you’ll be looking at more like 30-35mpg on a long run. It still has impressive 40g/km official CO2 emissions though.

The basic 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol turbo engine has an official economy figure of up to 50mpg, but around 40mpg in real world conditions would be more like it. CO2 emissions of 127g/km mean a reasonable first year road tax cost.

Safety & security

The 508 put in a very impressive performance when it was crash-tested by Euro NCAP back in 2018. Aside from the full set of five stars for its overall performance, it scored a 96% rating for adult occupant protection, albeit a slightly less impressive 86% for child occupant protection.

Standard safety spec includes a pop-up bonnet, to protect a pedestrian in the event of an impact and automated emergency braking to help stop that happening in the first place. You also get standard electric child door locks, and tyre pressure monitoring. There’s also a distance alert, which warns you if you’re getting too close to the car in front, an intelligent speed limiter, cruise control, and lane-keeping aid.

However, if you want more than that you’ll have to trade-up. Allure Premium models come with blind spot monitoring, driver attention alert, automatic high-beam headlights, radar-guided cruise control with traffic stop-and-go, and an upgraded lane-keeping assistant.

Only the top-spec PSE version gets the night vision camera as standard.

Reliability and problems

Peugeot has done very well in recent years in surveys of reliability and ownership satisfaction, so the 508 is a solid bet for reliability. Although the hybrid engines are fairly new designs, the 1.2 petrol is a long-serving engine, and shouldn’t have any major gremlins left.

The 508’s build quality is good, but inside you’ll notice that some surfaces and some of the switches and buttons don’t quite have the solidity that you’d find in a Volkswagen or a Volvo, so while there have been no major reports of unreliability, they may not hold together quite so well in the longer term. The 508 has been recalled a few times; for engine management software updates, for rear suspension problems, and for problems with the roof-rack fixing points.

Peugeot gives the 508 a three-year warranty, which has unlimited mileage for the first two years, but which is restricted to 60,000-miles in the third year. You can extend the warranty of your 508, or any Peugeot, for a fee as long as it’s less than 10 years old and has fewer than 100,000-miles on the clock.

Buy or lease the Peugeot 508 at a price you’ll love
We take the hassle and haggle out of car buying by finding you great deals from local and national dealers
RRP £34,185 - £46,440 Avg. Carwow saving £8,627 off RRP
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