Drive – Peugeot 407 Review

29 Mar 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Drive – Peugeot 407 Review
Peugeot 407

Joshua Dowling

Make PEUGEOT Model 407 Model Variant SV EXECUTIVE Series Year 2004 Body Group 4D SEDAN

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Pigeonhole: French Camry.

Philosophy: A medium-sized car but vive la difference.

Trivia: The global television ad for the 407 was filmed in Sydney a few months ago.

Who’s buying it: Peugeot devotees who’ve been waiting almost eight years for the 406 to be replaced.

Why you’d buy it: In-your-face styling, sumptuous cabin, you want to be seen to be different.

Why you wouldn’t: In-your-face-styling, fiddly cabin controls.

Standard equipment: For the money, the 407 is hard to beat in the prestige car class there isn’t enough room here to list everything. Dual-zone, climate-controlled air-conditioning, rain-sensing wipers, leather upholstery and trip computer are the highlights.

Safety: A fortress. Driver and front passenger air bags, front and rear side air bags, full length curtain air bags, anti-lock brakes with electronic brake force distribution (it pushes the brake pedal harder in an emergency if the car senses an emergency stop and the driver isn’t pushing hard enough), stability and traction control.

Cabin: Creates the impression of space with a sweeping dashboard and far-forward windscreen pillars. Nicely presented, with comfortable seats that have ample adjustment. The big blot on its copybook is the mish-mash of buttons that make it a challenge to find the right radio or air-conditioning controls quickly. It’s too tempting to take your eyes off the road for longer than they should be.

I regard this as a safety as well as an ergonomics misdemeanour.

Engine: The 3.0-litre V6 tested (for the technically minded, it has 155 kW of power and 290 Nm of torque) sounds smooth but does not match the refinement of, say, a Toyota Camry V6. A 2.2-litre four-cylinder and 2.0-litre turbo diesel are also available.

Transmission: The six-speed automatic is well matched to the V6, holds gears when you want it to and shifts smoothly throughout the rev range. It has a manual override for those who want to dictate which gear they are in.

Steering: Good feel at suburban or freeway speeds but a broad turning circle (the exact distance was conspicuously absent from the media check list) make snappy U-turns or tricky car park manoeuvres difficult.

Peugeot 407

Ride: A French specialty in small cars but not necessarily in large cars such as the 407, this is a big improvement on previous big, V6-powered Peugeots.

Fuel: Thirsty and expensive. Expect a high 14.5 litres/100 kilometres around town and a respectable 7.0 litres/100 kilometres on the open road. And it requires premium unleaded, which is about 10 cents a litre dearer these days.

Brakes: Four-wheel discs with anti-lock brakes. OK pedal feel, good braking performance.

Build: One of the more impressive examples of Peugeot coachwork we’ve sampled of late. The smaller Peugeots appear to be slapped together, the car we sampled wasn’t too bad.

Warranty: Three years/100,000 kilometres. The industry average.

Audio: Average sound from the AM-FM CD player, whose main controls are among a mish-mash of buttons with the air-conditioning controls. Maybe it’s Peugeot’s way to force drivers to use the audio control stalk (which adjusts only the most basic functions) mounted on the steering column.

Cost: The 407 range starts at $42,790 for a 2.2-litre sedan and reaches $58,990 for the 3.0-litre V6-powered wagon. The 3.0-litre V6 sedan tested was $55,990.

Verdict: I hated the look when I first saw the 407, but it has grown on me in recent months. I doubt Lexus will be copying this design for its next ES300. The 407 is a sound car, well equipped for the price and nice to drive.

It just depends how much you want to be noticed.

Details and prices correct at publication date

Peugeot 407
Peugeot 407
Peugeot 407
Peugeot 407
Peugeot 407
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