Enjoy yourself, the song advises, itís later than you think. This might as well have been the email from the chap who controls Peugeotís media fleet when I received a discreet nudge about our 5008’s return date. The problem with working in magazines is that all parties have to think stupidly far ahead. From his control tower, our valiant Editor has to marshal a veritable spaghetti of test plans, so although Peugeotís email seems early, coming as it did before the Christmas tree was up, it was timely.
And Iím gnashing my teeth. Truth is, I have enjoyed this car beyond the required editorial standard for calm and collected road testing. It has character, it has charisma (if Mitsubishiís abuse of the word in 1995 still allows it any currency) and boy, it makes a hard act to follow. Distilled to one point, I struggle to picture any SUV packed with such finesse and ability at such a price. 2018 saw some interesting newcomers, but the 3008 and 5008ís total impact on SUV developments may well prove more evident as time moves on.
Not that this is the last report; that should come in a couple of months. This carís tenure as a family workhorse has straddled changing times. Our oldest daughter has decamped to university, while our oldest son has passed his driving test. So given the arrival of (yet) another family car in the driveway, we are shifting away from the need to have a six-seater (plus spare) car with hefty loadspace, travelling en masse being less of a mass experience.
Space, all the same, is seductive. Not least for what it enables you to do. Having ditched a war-torn sofa from the sitting room (war-tearing cat anyone?), we spot the perfect replacement for sale online, just a few miles down the road. ìYouíll never get it in the car,î my wife declares. At 2.2 metres, it did look highly unlikely. But I set off in the dark to get it, thinking maybe I could sneak home on the local country lanes with the tailgate up, if necessary. It wasnít: the dirty great thing went in quite comfortably with no need to trouble my chiropractor, or indeed consult Google about abnormal loading legislation.
So that, at the risk of spoiling a future surmisal, points to what keeps the waiting list busy for the 5008. Despite its glad-rags and plushness, itís a car that doesnít baulk at competing with a Transit. So it has become my new yardstick. Itís a shoe size down, of course, but SEATís Ateca paid me a visit this month. I gazed into this modelís non-flat load area and saw my furniture-hauling fantasies evaporate. Clearly any downsizing from the 5008 will need a carefully measured approach. That, or a taste for smaller sofas.
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Date arrived 9th March 2018
Fuel economy 57.6mpg (combined) 38.1mpg (on test)
Meet the great indoors. Despite shrinking needs, I still love the agoraphobia-inducing cabin.
Fancy a 2019 Easter egg? Dealer orders suggest it may arrive quicker than one of these.