Goodwood Test: Peugeot 308 Hybrid 2022 Review

Can Peugeot's 225PS plug-in hybrid trouble the Germans..?
26th July 2022
Ben Miles



Surely The Peugeot 308 plug-in hybrid is everything a French car should be? Or at least in theory. A family-sized car with plenty of room, looks that outshine the average hatchback, a slightly out-there interior and a futuristic drivetrain designed for comfort and economy rather than performance. OK, it’s not a 2CV or a DS, but this is definitely French car territory.

We like

  • Looks great
  • Smooth hybrid transition
  • Rapid in a straight line

We don't like

  • i-cockpit will split opinions
  • Feels heavy at times
  • Price pushing up to £40,000



We could probably finish here in a matter of words, it looks bloody great. But then you knew that about Peugeots at the moment. Those Lion’s teeth lights are simple but elegant, acting as both daylight running lights and indicators when needed. The grille is large, without being overbearing and the headlights blend into the upper corners.

The Peugeot 308’s front arches contain strong feature lines, which reappear over the rear, and it doesn’t try to hide that it’s quite a large lump of metal and glass – no black A pillars going on here.

The rear is slightly let down by a pair of absolutely massive fake exhaust surrounds, but the slim lights above, fitting into a bar that runs across the whole rear – de rigueur of course – rescue it. The rear bumper is chunky, pushing back from the rear wheels before it folds into the rear bootline. To protect the look there’s no notch visible for the boot release, that’s hidden almost inside the rear light bar.

Overall it looks fantastic, a quick Google of the last two Peugeot 308 designs will showcase just how far Peugeot has come over the last five years or so.

Performance and Handling


The Peugeot 308 HYBRID 225 e-EAT8, to give it at least two thirds of its impossibly long name, is a plug-in hybrid. There’s a four-cylinder turbocharged engine slung out over the nose, with extra propulsion coming from an electric motor on the front axle. That’s good for a combined 225PS (165kW) and 360Nm (266lb ft). Almost all of that torque comes from the electric motors (320Nm to be precise) which means that the system very much runs as a whole, rather than the batteries just kicking in some extra performance.

As a result, when everything works together the 308 is sprightly. Full throttle requests a decent kick from the electric motor, filling the gap nicely before the traditional engine really gets itself going. That means 62mph is reached in 7.5 seconds and the 308 will go on to 146mph if you ask it to (full EV mode will restrict that to 83mph. Electric mode brings very little difference in performance, the Peugeot still hustling itself well when you ask.

Steering is light, but weights up very artificially in sport mode, with the little i-cockpit wheel very much in “twirl around like a baton” mode, rather than providing any real resistance. Pushing right back to those French car stereotypes, the 308’s real strong point is comfort. Back-to-back tested against some German exec fair, the 308 came out significantly on top in the comfort stakes. The suspension is supple and damped nicely without being prone to a wallow. Even with a lot of weight in the nose the Peugeot doesn’t ever feel like it’s struggling to control its mass through a corner. It will nip around nicely, without ever pushing you into overconfidence. The fronts grip strongly even if you chuck the 308 in, never really offering too much to be concerned about.

That all said, if you do let the batteries run out of juice – and with battery saving settings that is entirely your own fault – the Peugeot 308 does start to wheeze a teeny bit. The 250Nm (184lb ft) of torque from the engine should be enough, but without the instant electric torque it suddenly feels lacking until it starts to move up the rev range.

The switch between electric and petrol motion is controlled smoothly and the 308 Hybrid is capable of 37 miles on its batteries alone. As you might expect the c200-mile range promised by the WLTP cycle is a little bit of a fantasy day-to-day, but when we kept the 308’s batteries topped up we did see mpg into three figures.



How you feel about the 308’s insides will entirely depend on how you feel about Peugeot’s still unique i-cockpit concept. If you’ve not driven a Peugeot in the last decade, that means small steering wheel, set low so that you look over it to see the instrument cluster rather than looking through it.

It’s a system that’s been refined over the years – the initial version was not well received, and the wheel and instruments were eventually modified for version two – and it does work very well. But how you enjoy driving a Peugeot will depend on if you can adjust to that different setup. The rest of the interior is excellent and very high in quality, and even that steering wheel is a rather nice thing to hold – almost square and slender in the hand.

Unlike a lot of modern cars, the ten-inch infotainment screen doesn’t overwhelm the rest of the cabin. Below it is a pulled-out set of buttons to quickly switch to major features like climate and nav, but everything is controlled by this screen and those are touch buttons on their own little touchscreen.

Rear room is good, even with a taller driver, and the 308 hybrid has been blessed with a 361 litre boot – even with the space needed for batteries – which spreads to 1,271 if you pop down the rear seats.

Technology and Features


The 308 has 12.4kWh worth of batteries, which provide that 37 miles of range. On a 7.4kWh wall box that means about four hours charging – less from a public charger – or around seven hours on a three-pin socket, perfect for overnight charging.

We drove the 308 in GT Premium form, one of its higher specs, which comes at a base price of £39,470 – quite chunky for a Peugeot hatchback. Thankfully it’s been crammed with tech to make up that price, as well as the hybrid system. That ten-inch screen is standard, and very easy to use, with a simplistic layout that’s easy to get around, especially with the quick search buttons. Also standard is a litany of safety features – including lane keep assist, traffic cross alert, speed limit recognition and blind spot detection. Adaptive cruise control is also standard as well as two-zone climate control, automatic lights and windscreen wipers, keyless entry and go, privacy glass, split-folding rear seats, heated front seats and even massaging seats.



We already knew that the days of Peugeot manufacturing a car that a major TV show voted the worst car ever made were gone, but the 308 does feel like a further step up the food chain. Much like certain Korean brands have found their stride in recent years, Peugeot’s cars not only look significantly better than most other current designs, but they offer exec levels of tech and build quality throughout.

The 308’s hybrid system is unfussy and simple to use, perhaps 37 miles of range is an insignificant number in 2022, but it’s more than enough for most journeys, and the electric input makes the 308 more sprightly than it should be. The downside is the significant cost, and the i-cockpit setup will make or break how you feel about driving it. The GRR team are split, half hating i-cockpit, half accepting that it’s fine. Overall though, the 308 is a car that should make some German rivals a little nervous.


Engine 1.6-litre, four-cylinder petrol, single electric motor
Power 225PS (165kW) @ 6,000rpm
Torque 360Nm (266lb ft) @ 1,500-3,000rpm
Transmission Eight-speed automatic, front-wheel-drive
Kerb weight 1,633kg
0-62mph 7.5 seconds
Top speed 146mph
Fuel economy 213.8mpg
CO2 emissions 26g/km
Price From £39,470 (GT Premium spec, £40,165 as tested)

Our score

4 / 5

This score is an average based on aggregated reviews from trusted and verified sources.

  • CAR Magazine
    4 out of 5
  • Autocar
    4 out of 5
  • Top Gear
    3.5 out of 5