What is it?
It’s Peugeot’s revised 308, in eco form. The firm has refreshed its big seller (almost a million have been built since its introduction in October 2007) with a new corporate grille and badge treatment, flashes of chrome, new headlights and an improved cabin.
Most interestingly, it’s also introducing what Peugeot calls the ‘e-HDi micro hybrid system’. It comprises a 5V super capacitor which stores electric power and helps the car’s regular battery to restart the engine. In contrast with many other stop-start systems, Peugeot’s set-up uses a reversible alternator to crank the motor back into life. The firm claims this results in super-quick restart times (400ms) and “no vibration”.
The e-HDi system operates from around 12mph on the manual 308s, and 5mph on robotised manual models. It’s paired with the 110bhp version of Peugeot’s 1.6-litre turbodiesel, delivering CO2 figures of 109g/km for the manual and 104g/km for the robotised transmission.
There will also be an ultra-economical variant, with systems that disconnect the power steering where possible, and tyres with even lower resistance. Called Oxygo, this spec will deliver 98g/km in robotised manual models and 104g/km with regular sticks. We’re trying the 109g/km 1.6-litre manual here, though, in SR - which is a trim level designed for the fleet market.