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In-depth reviews

Peugeot E-308 review

In spite of its sharp looks, the Peugeot E-308 struggles to stand out amongst the already established competition

2024 Peugeot E-308 - header front
Overall rating

3.5 out of 5

Pros

  • Premium-feeling interior
  • Striking looks
  • Base model has lots of kit

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Tight rear seats
  • Lacklustre range and performance

Peugeot E-308 verdict

Like a sausage roll you forgot was in the oven, the arrival of the Peugeot E-308 has been a long wait for what eventually was a bit of a disappointment. At first glance, Peugeot’s family hatchback seems quite the appealing package; the E-308’s cabin looks and feels fantastic, while all models come highly equipped as standard. With that said, they should do, as starting from roughly £40,000, the Peugeot E-308 is considerably more expensive than its equally – if not more – capable competition. Competition that, critically, not only goes further on a charge, but is more spacious and more enjoyable to drive, too. If you’re simply entranced by the Peugeot’s concept-car looks, you won’t be disappointed. Otherwise, we think there are much stronger – and better value – options out there.

Details, specs and alternatives

Forget SUVs, the electric family hatchback market is thriving, with familiar-looking models from all the most popular manufacturers like Volkswagen, Renault and even MG. The Peugeot E-308 is the French maker’s entry into the sector and is essentially an electric version of the already-on-sale petrol-powered 308.

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Underneath its heavily sculpted exterior, the striking Peugeot E-308 shares its parts with the Vauxhall Astra Electric. This means it’s powered by a 54kWh battery, as well as a 156bhp front-mounted electric motor. Peugeot says the E-308 is capable of up to 267 miles on a charge, which is only slightly more than what’s possible in the brand’s smaller EVs like the E-208 supermini and E-2008 crossover.

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After being revealed all the way back in 2022, the Peugeot E-308 is finally on sale in the UK, with buyers able to choose from three trim levels: Allure, GT and the limited-run First Edition. Starting from over £40,000, the electric 308 costs quite a bit more than the petrol model; it’s only marginally less than a Tesla Model 3, and is priced in-line with the petrol BMW 3 Series. It’s also worth mentioning that a Peugeot E-308 SW estate is also on the way and will go on sale by the end of 2023, but you can expect this to be even more expensive.

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Thankfully, even the entry-level Allure has all the kit you could ever need. As standard comes LED headlights, 18-inch wheels, dual-zone climate control, a heated steering wheel, a twin-screen infotainment system with built-in sat nav plus Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, digital dials, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel and a reversing camera.

Stepping up to the GT model will cost you roughly £2,000 extra and nets you gloss black exterior accents, Matrix-LED headlights, LED tail lights with a ‘welcome’ animation, 3D digital dials, Alcantara upholstery and ambient lighting. Finally, the First Edition model will only be available for a few months after launch and gets exclusive blue upholstery and metallic paint as standard.

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We think the base Allure model represents the best value-for-money, although we would like to take our hats off to Peugeot for making the standard colour the striking ‘Olivine Green’, rather than some boring black or white.

Range, battery size & charging

Range

Wallbox charge time

Rapid charge

267 miles

8hrs (0-100%, 7.4kW)

30mins (10-80%, 100kW)

As mentioned, there are no choices when it comes to the Peugeot E-308’s powertrain; all models come fitted with a 51kWh battery pack (useable capacity, 54kWh total capacity) which, according to Peugeot, is sufficient for a range of up to 267 miles on a single charge. 

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While this figure is more than enough for a supermini like, say, the Peugeot E-208, it lags quite a bit behind the E-308’s main competition. The Hyundai Kona Electric is capable of over 300 miles on a charge, while Volkswagen’s ID.3 is available with two battery sizes that both offer the same, if not more range than the Peugeot. Even the MG4 Extended Range has a claimed 323-mile maximum, and that car costs roughly £4,000 less than an entry-level E-308.

When the E-308’s battery does start to run dry, you’ll need to find yourself a public rapid charger – something that can be done via the MyPeugeot app or in the infotainment screen. Find one that’s sufficiently fast and Peugeot says you can charge the E-308 from 10-80% in just 30 minutes. Rivals like the Cupra Born can charge at faster speeds than the Peugeot 100kW maximum, but the E-308’s relatively small battery means this isn’t so much of an issue. Of course, plugging-in at home at a standard 7.4kW wallbox will take significantly longer.

Running costs & insurance

As mentioned the electric Peugeot 308 isn’t only more expensive than the petrol model, but it’s also pretty pricey in electric hatchback terms, too. Thankfully, low running costs should at least make it appealing to company car drivers, as well as private buyers willing to swallow the large initial cost. Charging an electric car at home is much cheaper than filling a car up with petrol, while the cost of public charging is beginning to come down, too, making longer journeys more affordable.

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Like all electric cars, the Peugeot E-308 not only benefits from an exemption to things like the London Congestion Charge, it’s also not liable for road tax (VED), either. Perhaps the biggest draw of an electric car like the E-308, however, is its 2% Benefit-in-Kind rating, which means company car drivers could be paying as little as £160 per year in tax to run it for business.

Performance, motor & drive

0-62mph

Top speed

Driven wheels

Power

9.8s

106mph

Front

156bhp

Electric cars have become known for their ability to offer blistering acceleration if engineered for such purposes, with the insanely fast Tesla Model S Plaid being a prime example of this sort of application. The Peugeot E-308 on the other hand, won’t be winning any drag races with its 156bhp electric motor; the instant torque does make it feel nippy at lower speeds, but there’s no concealing that near-10-second 0-62mph time. 

To get the maximum power output you’ll need to switch the Peugeot into its ‘Sport’ setting; there are also ‘Normal’ and ‘Eco’ modes, and while these do help preserve range, they also make the car feel a tad lethargic. Though Sport also adds weight to the steering, turning the awkwardly-small steering wheel – more on that later – feels pretty light and unnatural overall. This ultimately makes the E-308 a doddle to drive around town, but the Cupra Born and MG4 remain our top picks if you’re looking for something that’ll provide some fun on a twisty road.

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Unlike some EV rivals such as the Renault Megane E-Tech, the Peugeot E-308 doesn’t offer full one-pedal driving. There are only two regenerative braking settings, with the strongest – also known as the ‘B mode’ – not quite slowing the car down enough for that, meaning you’ll frequently also have to use the brakes.

Interior, dashboard & infotainment

Stepping inside the Peugeot E-308, and aside from the logo on the steering wheel, you could be forgiven for thinking you’re in something much more exciting. Material quality is pretty good for a mainstream model such as this, while the overall design of the interior is very driver-focused, with the dashboard and twin infotainment screens angled towards the driver, and a very sporty-looking squared-off steering wheel.

Speaking of which, the steering wheel sits below Peugeot’s i-Cockpit instrument cluster, which even has a clever 3D effect on top models. Unfortunately, the whole setup is a case of ‘form over function’ as it means you have to position the wheel abnormally low in order to peer over the top of it and view the dials. For some drivers, this will be just as uncomfortable as you might expect, with the wheel bashing your knee each time you want to turn. Make sure to try before you buy to make sure the driving position isn’t too troublesome for you.

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On a lighter note, Peugeot’s infotainment system is pretty slick. We like the secondary screen below the main 10-inch display, although we do feel a row of physical shortcut buttons and climate dials would be easier to use when on the move. Peugeot’s software is easy to use nonetheless, and each screen offers bright and crisp graphics.

Boot space, seating & practicality

Length

Width

Height

Boot space (seats up/down)

4,367mm

1,852mm

1,441mm

361/1,271 litres litres

The majority of buyers will be looking to use the Peugeot E-308 as a family car, so one would hope it offers plenty of space. Unfortunately, it’s pretty tight in the rear of the E-308; children should be more than comfortable, but adults may find they’re struggling for legroom.

The E-308’s 361-litre boot is on par with the MG4’s offering, but is roughly 50 litres down on that of the petrol car. Still, it’s more than sufficient for the weekly shop and the rear seats can be folded flat in a 60:40 arrangement to provide a much larger load area. If you’re in dire need of more space, the E-308 SW estate is arriving soon and boasts a longer wheelbase (the distance between the front and rear wheels) for more legroom, as well as a 600-litre boot.

Reliability & safety rating

The Peugeot E-308 is too new for us to provide any solid reliability data, although it does sit on widely-used underpinnings about which we are yet to hear any horror stories. Electric cars should, in theory, be more reliable than their petrol equivalents due to having far fewer moving parts. However, while Peugeot placed a solid 9th out of 32 manufacturers in our 2023 Driver Power customer satisfaction survey, the majority of the maker’s reliability complaints surrounded electrical faults – not something you want to hear when it comes to buying an EV like the E-308.

What should give you more peace of mind is the Peugeot 308’s four-star Euro NCAP safety rating, which also applies to the electric variant. While this isn’t a perfect score, it’s important to remember that Euro NCAP tests are becoming more and more stringent than ever, meaning the 308 is still a very safe car. All models come loaded with safety kit including autonomous emergency braking and lane-keep assist, while top GT models get things like blind-spot monitoring and adaptive cruise control. A reversing camera is also standard for easier manoeuvres.

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Hello there, I’m Tom Jervis and I have the pleasure of being the Content Editor here at DrivingElectric. Before joining the team in 2023, I spent my time reviewing cars and offering car buying tips and advice on DrivingElectric’s sister site, Carbuyer. I also continue to occasionally contribute to the AutoExpress magazine – another of DrivingElectric’s partner brands. In a past life, I worked for the BBC as a journalist and broadcast assistant for regional services in the east of England – constantly trying to find stories that related to cars!

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