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Remember the cars of yesteryear? They were a lot smaller. Think the original Fiat 500, the first MINI Cooper? Tiny little things. Cute too. I think for obvious reasons, they were too small. Not practical, people. But now, it seems as if most cars are really big.
Thankfully, Peugeot, along with some other motor manufacturers, haven’t forgotten the micro-mini hatchback. Locally, there are over a dozen options to choose from. Peugeot have named their little bambino the 108. This compact little charmer is a five-door example of functional design. Each door extends to the corners of the car, making for great utility. This car may be compact, but it offers real-world utility when compared to its forefathers.
What do you get? A cute design. I especially enjoyed the back, which looks like an app icon. Fresh, eye-catching and fashionably relevant. The front of the 108 is simpler – classically Peugeot. There is a trendy check fabric used on the seats. The front ones have the headrests built in making them look like a racing seat. The cabin also offers front electric windows (the rear ones only pop out on a hinge), central locking, a nice strong aircon while the touchscreen infotainment system takes centre stage within the dashboard. The steering wheel features built-in buttons that link to the function of the infotainment system. It is all nice and easy-to-use. The speakers linked to the infotainment system offer decent sound which will be appreciated by those who love to drive and jive. Speaking of the funky set, the infotainment system is designed to sync with smartphones. In fact, it is possible to connect a single Smartphone only for Bluetooth®, and Mirror Screen connection simultaneously or two Smartphones at the same time via Bluetooth®, (for example to make calls using the touchscreen and the integrated speakers and microphone) and via the Mirror Screen (for example to listen to music).
Some warning: the headlamps and windscreen wipers are manual in operation and the lights need to be turned off or the battery will run flat. As you would expect in a price-conscious vehicle the plastics are rather taut and scratchy. But at R179 900, there is still good value.
On the road, you are driven by a 1.0-l 3-cylinder motor. An eager little engine that runs out of breath and steam when pushed. Luckily, it only weighs in at 840kg and is paired with a light, snappy 5-speed manual gearbox – you’ll find yourself working the gearbox and revving the engine to keep up with the flow of quick-paced traffic. Acceleration to 100km/h happens in a leisurely 13.5 seconds while the top speed of the 108 is maxed at 160km/h. The benefit of the compact engine is its frugality – the 108 sips between 4.2 and 7.2-l per 100 km.
Saying that the 108 does manage to keep up and is a delight to drive. Steering is power-assisted yet feels weighted. The sensation is perfect on-the-go albeit it gives you a light arm workout in a parking lot.
This end-of-the-market is popular for both first-time car buyers, those simplifying their lives and those on a tighter budget. With that said, there are those looking for charm and image, those who want reliability and value and others who want it all.
The 108 is worth considering on your shopping list – test drive one and take note of the outstanding service and maintenance plan!
Datsun Go, Ford Figo Go, Hyundai Grand i10, Kia Picanto, Nissan Micra Active, Renault Kwid/Sandero, Smart forfour, Suzuki Swift, Toyota Aygo/Etios and Volkswagen Up!
108 1.0 Active R179 900
Service and warranty
A 5 year / 100 000km comprehensive warranty and a 5 year / 100 000km comprehensive service plan.
Customer support: roadside assistance, 24-hour Customer Contact Centre, licence renewal reminder, Service Plan and warranty expiry notifications.
Customer experience: A service experience that can be trusted and believed in.
Peace of mind service and repairs: complimentary health check. Courtesy transport for all warranty repairs for 48 hours. Peugeot Parts basket that will always be competitively priced. Safety film option; tracking solution option; MicroDot; My Peugeot
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