NEVER has a car proved as useful as the Peugeot 4007.
That may sound a pretty bold statement considering I only had the SUV a week, but in that time I used it to bring my girlfriend (and all her belongings) back from Cardiff University and then, a few days later, I transported a team of seven people to Liverpool for the city’s annual half marathon.
The only thing I didn’t do with the 4007 is take it off road, which I could have done because, like the all-new Mitsubishi Outlander it is based on, the Peugeot has a four-wheel drive system that can be easily operated by a rotary controller on the floor console.
Let me start by telling you about my trip to Cardiff.
Back in September I used a Mitsubishi L200 in order to take my girlfriend and her shoes to university and at the time was left thinking ‘how on earth am I going to fetch all this stuff back?’
But I needn’t have worried because, by luck, the car I had on test this week offers a really generous amount of load space.
The Peugeot 4007 has a 510-litre boot when only five chairs are in place and is easily boosted to 1,686 litres if you tumble the second row of seats forward.
Other neat touches include a two-piece tailgate with a bottom section which folds down to provide a low loading height – which proved most welcome when it came to lifting one heavy suitcase after another into the back of the 4007.
Now onto why the Peugeot 4007 proved such a hit on the morning of my first ever half marathon.
When collecting my girlfriend from university it was the ability to tumble the second row of seats forward that proved so useful, but this time it was the cleverly hidden rear seats in the back that made light work of transporting seven people (the two spectators took the smaller back seats) to the start-line.
After that race had finished we all gathered back at the car and, as lads do, started to discuss the Peugeot that had been so useful only a few hours earlier.
The first thing that struck my friends was how similar it looked to the Mitsubishi Outlander I had on test a few weeks earlier, and that is because the 4007 completes a trio of cars (including the Citroen C-Crosser) based on the Outlander.
All three vehicles share the same underpinnings and four-wheel drive system, while most of the bodywork and interior parts are the same too.
But one thing that makes the 4007 stand-out as a Peugeot is its trademark front grille, combined with a huge Lion badge and slanted headlamps.
Opinion was split as to which of the SUVs I’d had on test looks the best, but all agreed they possess a certain amount of kerb appeal and the Peugeot was the perfect car for the weekend we ran around Liverpool in less than two hours.
But my race time of 1.50.04 wasn’t the only figure I was impressed with this weekend, as I also welcomed the very respectable fuel economy figure of 38.7mpg.
And after a long hard run the luxury items – leather upholstery, xenon headlamps, a CD changer and rear parking sensors – fitted to the GT model I was driving proved very nice.
There is one engine in the current Peugeot 4007 line up – a diesel 2.2 litre HDi 16v DPFS 156bhp, two transmission options are available (manual or dual clutch automatic), two trim levels SE and GT and prices start from £24,345 rising to £28,145. I tested the Peugeot 4007 GT, priced at £27,695.