The spiritual successor to the legend that is the 309 GTI is the 308 GTI, and now Peugeot has given us a revised version which I’ve been driving very quickly at Millbrook.
Sportbrake looks and that two-tone paint
One of the things that strikes you about the 308 GTI is the Sportback style design; it’s similar to the RS3 Sportback in a way. That two-tone paint while possibly not for everyone is stunning in the metal. It just adds to the aggressive looks of the car. From the front bumper backwards screams sporting intentions all the way back to the rear diffuser. Peugeot didn’t stop there either and added massive lightweight 19-inch wheels shod in super grippy Michelin Pilot Super Sport tyres to make it all look very sporty and aggressive.
They have also been busy on the inside as well where you will find a set of super-huggy sports seats along with a sported up Alcantara/leather combo in black with red trim all over the minimalist style cabin.
Small Motor Big Power
Peugeot has done away with the lesser-tuned 247bhp version of the 308 GTI, so this full-fat 267bhp version is now your only choice into fast, big Pug ownership. It’s still powered by the excellent 1.6-litre four banger turbocharged motor which claims to deliver a combined fuel economy figure of 47.1mpg
This massive power versus capacity victory will take the GTI from 0-62 mph in 6.0 seconds dead onwards to a top speed of 155mph. To help keep all that power in check the front end gets a Torsen limited-slip differential, and stiffer and lowered suspension along with a massive set of 380mm brake discs, four-pot callipers to further help separate this fast 308 from the garden variety shopping cart versions.
So it’s GTI quick but is it any good?
This tiny motor springs into life at 2500rpm onwards to the 6000rpm redline – in terms of noise though, I can only describe as a bit uninspiring to be brutally honest. Regardless it gathers pace in a rather frantic if almost manic way as you hit the 2500rpm marker. The Torsen diff does a good job of keeping everything together while you mash the throttle hard into the carpet.
During the twisty stuff the 308 shows its GTI history by being both tactile and agile in the corners, it’s almost a bit bonkers under certain circumstances as it will oversteer on track if you give it enough encouragement.
The one blot on the 308 GTI’s copybook though is that steering – it’s so light that a small child could drive this car; when driving it almost nullifies the driver's input as you try and get a grasp of what is actually going on with the front end.
Should You Buy One?
The 308 GTI is a brutal hot hatch, there is no doubt it does possess that special something to make it worthy of the fabled GTI badge, as long as you can live with that steering that is - remember that all this pace and power comes in for around £29k which is a very good price for what is a lot of car.
Engine 1598cc/four cylinder turbocharged Power 268 bhp Top Speed 155 mph 0-60 mph 6.0 secs Gearbox 6-speed manual Torque 243 ft-lb CO2 Emissions 139 g/km Fuel Economy 47.1 mpg combined Kerbweight 1205kg Price as tested £29,405