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Peugeot dives head-first into Europe’s burgeoning large crossover segment

Peugeot has introduced the brand new, second-generation 5008 ahead of its public debut at this year’s Paris Auto Show.

The 5008 has morphed from a van-like people mover into a seven-seater crossover, reflecting the European market’s shift towards soft-roaders. Visually, it adopts a more rugged evolution of Peugeot’s newest design language. The look is characterized by a thin grille with three slats, sharp headlights, and horizontal tail lamps with claw-like LED inserts. Chrome trim above the windows adds a premium touch to the overall look.

The driver is greeted by a sleek, driver-oriented center console and an instrument cluster that’s configurable and fully digital. An eight-inch touchscreen that pops up from the dashboard runs the latest generation of Peugeot’s infotainment system. The 5008 can seat seven passengers spread out over three rows of seats, though the third row will most likely be available at an extra cost.

The 5008 is one of the most high-tech cars Peugeot has ever built thanks to a long list of driving aids. Notably, it’s available with a 360-degree camera, hill descent control, distance alert, a lane departure warning system, traffic sign recognition, and adaptive cruise control, just to name a few. It’s also compatible with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, features that are still relatively rare in Europe.

Buyers who want a gasoline-powered 5008 can order a 1.2-liter three-cylinder engine rated at 130 horsepower or an aging 1.6-liter unit that makes 165 horses. The list of turbodiesel engines includes a 1.6-liter offered with 100 or 120 horsepower, and a 2.0-liter with 150 or 180 horses. Most engines are available with either a manual or an automatic transmission, but front-wheel drive is the only configuration available, making the 5008 more of a crossover than a true SUV.

Read more: Peugeot-Citroen announces a huge model offensive, and plan to return to the U.S.

Built in France, the 2017 Peugeot 5008 will go on sale in Europe — and likely in China — before the end of the year. It will fight in the same segment as the second-generation Renault Koleos, which was introduced earlier this year in Beijing, and the Skoda Kodiaq, which is also debuting in the French capital.