We have in this week Peugeot’s little load-lugger, the Peugeot 207 SW Sport HDi 92, for review and road test. Is there any point in such a small estate car?
There’s nothing we Brits like more than a decent Estate car.
Whether it’s a big, boxy old-fashioned Volvo load lugger or a sleek and supercar-quick RS6 Avant, there’s something deeply satisfying about having a car on the drive that you know will come in useful.
Because we all know, deep-down, that the day will come when we’ll need to move something that just wouldn’t fit in a normal boot.
There’ll be an urgent need to run a washing machine from shop to home because it just must be in and working today. Or the lawnmower will need taking for a service and the man who mends your mower can’t pick it up until next week, but if you can get it here…
We just know it pays to be prepared; deep down we’re a nation of almost grown-up boy scouts, just waiting for the chance to prove we’re ready for anything. It’s a man thing.
This does make me wonder just where the Peugeot 207 SW fits in to this obsession with being prepared to lug. Because it is, without a doubt, an Estate car. It’s got an extra boxy bit welded on the back of the regular car, and you can get more in than you could in the hatch.
But the 207 SW doesn’t feel like it’s the sort of car a man would buy, at least not for himself. Instead, it’s the sort of car a man would think to buy for his wife; it’s a ‘perfect for shopping and the kids and just in case you need to move something for your mother’ type of car.
But does it make any sense buying an estate version of a supermini? Even with the extra bit on the back, how much room will there really be to actually carry anything extra? And will there really be more room than in the regular hatchback.
Surprisingly, and I was surprised, you can get quite a lot of stuff in the back of the 207 SW if you put your mind to it. Certainly a lot more than you can in the hatch, and although you know this is only a little Peugeot 207 with an estate back, it works.
That extra bit on the back gives not just more load-lugging space but more legroom for back seat passengers too. There’s also a little bit more headroom, but it’s the extra 55 litres of seats-up space, the really quite impressive seats down space and the opening glass in the tailgate that make the 207 SW a better than just decent little estate
But it’s a slightly odd looking little estate that manages to look much like its hatchback brother from some angles, but oddly incongruous from others. And it’s bound to be noisy and wallowy and not a patch on its hatch sibling. Isn’t it?
The cabin of the 207 SW is a perfectly decent place to be. You can find a driving position to suit whether you’re 5’3” or 6’3” (we tried), the controls are all at hand and decently ergonomic, just like the hatch.
The panoramic roof bathes the interior in light and makes it seem a bigger place than you know it is; still, you never feel confined. And it’s well-equipped, or at least it is on this Sport version, with auto lights and wipers, Climate, privacy glass, alloys, and electric windows all round. It doesn’t feel at all like a cheap hatch with a big boot.
It doesn’t drive like one either. In fact it feels very much like the hatch to drive too. Yes, this 207 SW has the not exactly hair-on-fire 1.6 litre diesel with a far from earth-shattering 92bhp at its disposal and yes, it takes around three weeks to get to 60mph (well, 13.3 seconds). But it feels better than that.
It doesn’t feel underpowered, at least not for a car like this. The steering seems to have focused more on being light than feeding back, and the gearbox isn’t the slickest bit of kit in the park, but that doesn’t stop the 207 from being a half decent drive.
Around town it’s a bit crashy-bashy but oddly that seems to ease up as you push on round quicker, windier roads. It’s as if the 207 SW would rather be hustled than coaxed, always a good sign. There’s perhaps a bit more wind noise than in the hatch, but we concluded that was probably the roof bars.
Where it perhaps starts to unravel, just a little, for the 207 SW is on price. The 207 SW Sport is a not exactly cheap £16,135, so you’re paying an extra £1k for that extra bit of tin on the back. That may well be worthwhile once you’ve convinced yourself ‘being prepared’ is the way to go, but it’s a bit of a negative.
We don’t mean to damn with faint praise, but we are struggling a bit to see where the 207 SW fits in to the whole scheme of things. It’s the sort of money you’d pay for a much trendier car like a Juke, or even its big brother Qashqai.
Perhaps more importantly, certainly with this SW Sport, you’re starting to get in to Peugeot 3008 territory. Yes the 3008 is bigger (so what, I hear you say), but it is probably the best Peugeot on sale at the moment, and one of our favourite cars, capable of not just lugging loads but being quite cool in the process.
And cool isn’t an epithet you would use about the 207 SW – it’s a bit of an oddity, really. We see why Peugeot make it – and we can certainly understand why people buy it – but with a bit of lateral thinking there are better options for moving around a family and its stuff, even its once in a blue moon stuff.
As we said at the start, the 207 SW is the sort of car a husband may think would be ideal for ‘the wife and kids’. But we rather think ‘the wife’ may have a better ideas of what is cool, funky and practical for a family. And it’s probably not the 207 SW.
Fortunately for Peugeot, it should be the 3008.
Peugeot 207 SW Sport HDi 92 Quick Tech Specs
- Engine: 1560cc Diesel, 92bhp
- Performance: 0-62mph 13.3 seconds / Top Speed 113mph
- Economy: 67.2 mpg - Official / 54,9 mpg - Test
- Emissions: 110g/km
- Price: £16,135
Peugeot 207 SW Sport HDi 92 Specifications
Peugeot 207 SW Sport HDi 92 Photo Gallery
(25 photos – click any thumbnail for full gallery)