Peugeot 407 saloon (2004-2011)
The Peugeot 407 has striking looks, but isn’t great to drive or hugely practical. At least the diesel engines are strong performers."
- Long-distance motorway comfort
- Quiet, economical diesel engines
- Cabin feels good quality
- Uninspiring to drive
- Low-speed ride comfort could be better
- Headroom is lacking in the rear
The Peugeot 407 is something of an also-ran in the competitive family car segment. Its styling is striking, but it doesn’t offer much rear headroom and the boot is among the smallest of any large family car. However, it’s a great long-distance cruiser, with a relaxed, quiet motorway manner. Around town it’s not so good, and the suspension offers a jarring ride over poorer road surfaces. All the engines are strong, with the HDi 110 diesel offering nearly 58mpg. All trim levels have plenty of safety and comfort equipment.
MPG, running costs & CO2
All the diesel engines are capable of more than 40mpg - even the HDi 163 with an automatic gearbox - so running costs are low. You’ll find the Peugeot is a fairly cheap car to run - especially if you’re doing motorway miles. The 2.0 HDi 140 engine, with 49.5mpg and 150g/km of CO2, offers the best balance of fuel economy and performance.
Engines, drive & performance
Peugeot is famous for its ‘drive of your life’ slogan, but that doesn’t really apply to the 407 – rivals like the Ford Mondeo have more accomplished handling. It’s very relaxing on the motorway, though. Across the range, the engines are the 407’s highlight. All of them have plenty of pulling power, even the 110bhp 1.6 HDi diesel, while the 170bhp 2.2 HDi diesel feels strong in all gears.
Interior & comfort
The Peugeot 407 is especially quiet on the motorway, with engine, wind and tyre noise kept very low even at higher speeds. Only when revved hard do the diesel engines feel coarse. Around town the 407’s tendency to shake over bad surfaces can grate; it’s not as good at smoothing roads out as it should be. Taller rear passengers will find a distinct lack of headroom.
Practicality & boot space
The 407 offers a 407-litre boot, but for a large family car that’s pretty small, and there’s no hatchback version. It’s a good square shape and golf bag friendly, but the narrow boot opening hinders the loading of bigger items. In the cabin, storage space is less than average with a central storage box and a glove compartment big enough for a decent number of CDs, and that’s about it.
Reliability & safety
The 407 has suffered sporadic reliability issues, including a number of official recalls - mostly for fuel leaks - so you’re not guaranteed problem-free motoring. However, every car gets front, side, curtain and driver’s knee airbags, as well as electronic stability control and anti-lock brakes. It also has a five-star Euro NCAP rating. The cabin feels good-quality too with soft-touch plastics and trim finished in gloss black.
Price, value for money & options
Each car comes with climate control, and the only notable thing missing is alloy wheels on basic S versions. Mid-range SR models resolve that, and add Bluetooth, while Sport editions come fully loaded with part-leather seats, rain-sensing windscreen wipers and front foglights. Be wary of depreciation, however - the 407 won’t hold its value anywhere near as well as a similarly priced VW Passat.