Peugeot has confirmed that its 3008 SUV will be given a performance flagship thanks to the company’s investment in plug-in hybrid technology.
The French brand’s head of product planning, Laurent Blanchet, confirmed to the UK’s AutoExpress that when combined with the company’s 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine the plug-in hybrid system is capable of up to 220kW.
“Combining the petrol engine with an electric motor, the combined horsepower of the car will be more or less 300 [equal to 220kW]” Blanchet explained, though in its highest state of tune as used in the 308 GTi hatch the 1.6-litre engine is capable of up to 200kW on its own.
Peugeot’s use of the EMP2 platform beneath the 3008 ensures weight is kept low, and, with the kind of outputs being touted, a performance oriented 3008 would surpass the outputs of most of its mainstream rivals, with the most powerful Volkswagen Tiguan capped at 162kW, the Ford Escape having 178kW, and a maximum of 177kW from the Subaru Forester – all of which currently rely solely on petrol power to produce those figures.
The 3008 PHEV will be able to complete the 0-100 km/h dash in an expected six seconds thanks to all wheel drive with petrol power driving the front wheels and an electrically powered rear axle.
Expected to launch in 2019 the range-topping 3008 isn’t likely to use the hallowed GTi badge as featured on Peugeot’s 208 and 308 hatches. Instead the new model will expand the 3008 GT range, which currently comes with a 132kW 2.0-litre turbo diesel engine in Europe.
“The hybrid is a sporty car, but the GTi badge is more for the small hatchback segment; a 3008 with a GTi badge is a bit too much right now,” According to Blanchet. “We could use the GT label instead.”
With diesel engines coming under increased emissions compliance pressure in Europe, the two model 3008 GT strategy could last for a few years with petrol-electric plug in hybrids expected to eventually take the place of diesel engines in Peugeot’s range.
Australian buyers will be introduced to the new 3008 later this year, to be followed by a larger, seven seat 5008 which could also utilise the powertrain path set down by the 3008 by adding a plug-in hybrid version later in its model life.