Monday, December 28, 2009

Peugeot 3008 Crossover Officially Revealed: AWD Hybrid Version to Follow Shortly

While all the spotlights were focused to Detroit and the 2009 North American International Auto Show, on the other side of the Atlantic, Peugeot took the opportunity to quietly unveil the all-new 3008 compact crossover. Take out the fancy-pansy detailing, and not much has changed from last year's Paris Show Prologue Hybrid Concept. That said, the five-seater 3008 is more of a pug than a stud - at least in what concerns its exterior styling.

If you're still wondering what the 3008 is supposed to be, Peugeot officials said that it is positioned "at the crossroads between several existing vehicles like the SUV, the MPV and hatchback." Something like an automotive mixed-grille in other words. The 3008's most closest rival seems to be the Nissan Qashqai crossover, which has proved quite successful in Europe.

Inside, the Pug features a very nicely styled dashboard that looks suspiciously similar in design with the Audi R8. As you'd expect from a French crossover, the 3008's cabin is fairly versatile and it includes an array of storage spaces with a total effective volume of nearly 50 liters. The load area (512lt under the parcel shelf) is accessible through a split tailgate that divides into two parts. Notably, it can be compartmentalized thanks to a floor with a 3-way height adjustment.

Europeans will be able to choose among seven different powetrain options. For 2009, these include: a 110HP 1.6-liter diesel with a 6-speed manual gearbox or an electronically-controlled manual gearbox; a 150HP 2.0-liter diesel with a 6-speed manual gearbox; a 163HP 2.0-liter diesel mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission; a 120HP 1.6-liter petrol engine hooked up to a 5-speed manual gearbox and a 1.6-liter turbocharged petrol unit with 150 or 156HP that's mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox.

Sharing its platform with the Peugeot 308 C-segment hatchback, the 3008 crossover will initially be available exclusively with front-wheel drive. Peugeot does however offer a faux off-road package called "Grip Control" that consists of 16-inch M+S (Mud & Snow) tires and intelligent traction control. According to the French automakers own words, this package "gives the vehicle a genuine ability to overcome difficult situations where the wheels have little grip."

Those searching for an all-wheel drive version will have to wait until the presentation of the Peugeot-Citroen PSA Group's first model to be equipped with HYbrid4 technology. To be launched by 2011 the latest, the 3008 HYbrid4 will combine a traditional engine that powers the front-wheels with an electric motor located under the load area floor near the axle that drives the rear wheels.

Peugeot said that this technology will not only add all-wheel drive capabilities to the model, but it will also reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by around 35%. At the Paris Motor Show, the Prologue HYbrid4 concept car was presented with a 2.0 litre HDi FAP engine with a power of 163HP and an electric motor with a maximum capacity of 27 kW (37HP) for a total power of 200HP and a maximum torque of 300 Nm at the front and 200 Nm at the rear. The fuel consumption of this model in the combined cycle was estimated at being only 4.1 liters/100 km (57.4mpg U.S.), with CO2 emissions of just 109 g/km.

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