Galway man plays major role in impressive new Peugeot models

The Peugeot 508.
The Peugeot 508.

Peugeot recorded the strongest growth in the Irish new car market up 53% for the first six months of 2018. Demand for the Peugeot range continues to soar on the back of sales of the multi-award-winning Peugeot 3008 SUV, Irish Car of the Year 2018 and the much-sought-after new 5008 7-seat SUV.

Last week in Monaco, two new Peugeot models were launched on the European market. Designed at the Peugeot Design Centre in Paris, where Galway man Cathal Loughnane is Head of the Design Lab, I took the new 508 and new Rifter on a test over two days around the streets of Monte Carlo and in the countryside surrounding the Principality.

On day one it was the Rifter; a car dedicated to the family market for those who need functionality and the need to carry seven people. Based on the shape and chassis of the new Partner van, the high-sided Rifter is a practical vehicle with no airs and graces. It comes in two lengths with sliding side doors and will be popular in the shuttle and taxi industry as well as being ideal for mobility transport and larger families.

That said, it is far from a van in terms of comfort for all seven passengers. The middle row has three separate seats with Isofix anchorage for child seats. That row can be moved forward and back to make ample room for the third row where there are two full seats that will, unlike many other MPVs, easily take two adults and all the leg room they need.

The other car launched is the new 508; a car with exceptional flair and one of the most handsome larger saloon car we have seen for some time. Take a look at the back end of the car and you know that Peugeot are on a winner with the styling. If you think, like me, that the rear is exceptional, a further walk around the car just enhances that overall image from every angle.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.