UK CAR Reviews: Peugeot 307 XSi

The Peugeot 307 is trying hard to cover all aspects of the market, there is no harm in that, however the 307 has missed a crucial element : the driver appeal.

Being the sporty model of the range you would expect this to be addressed, unfortunately this isn't the case.

It's a little better looking than the other models in the range, it has fully colour-coded exterior trim and a nice set of 17 inch alloys. Still, this doesn't make up for the chunky proportions of the car, it's a shame.. it had a lot of potential.

User the bonnet is a 2.0 litre 16v engine that pushes out a respectable 138bhp and 143lb ft of pull, it's the top engine in the range but doesn't transform what could be described as the sensible 307 into something more of a beast.

The drive is by far not as sprightly as the figures suggest, the throttle lacks immediacy but the car does show plenty of spark once it gets going, pulling strongly at higher revs makes overtaking on the motorway a breeze.

However it is lacking in shine and it just doesn't sound special, it has a rather empty sounding exhaust note that echoes around the cabin and under hard acceleration and high revs it sounds strained.

The chassis is unchanged in set-up from the lower spec models which means the potential to be inspiring is lost and can only be described as competent.

The steering is accurate and weights up at speed, however it doesn't respond quickly enough and lacks the feel you would expect.

In comparison with other cars in the small hatch market, the gearshift doesn't have the same precision as a Ford Focus or the Honda Civic.

It's not as alert as it's predecessor the 306, the drive in a 306 was fun, this.. is not. However the 307 is more secure and the body lean is kept in check.

The equipment level is high and safety is highly considered with the twin front, side and window airbags, anti-skid brakes and anti-whiplash headrests as standard.

In closing, there are two ways to approach the 307, the first is to take it as an entertaining 307.. you'll be disappointed because nothing has been done to improve on the dynamics. Secondly, viewing it as a well equipped range topping 307 and you have a car the does the job adequately. 


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