Peugeot’s genre-busting, high-riding 408 fastback has been approved for sale in Australia in both petrol and plug-in hybrid guise.

    The company has already confirmed it will launch the 408 locally in 2023, but wouldn’t be drawn today on more specific launch timing or what the local line-up will look like.

    Government approval documents, however, list three separate variants: Allure and GT models with a turbocharged 1.2-litre three-cylinder engine, and a flagship turbocharged plug-in hybrid GT.

    The 1.2-litre produces 96kW of power and 230Nm of torque, while the plug-in hybrid mates a 132kW turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine with an 81kW electric motor and a 12.4kWh battery pack, for a total system output of 165kW.

    Peugeot claims a WLTP electric-only range of up to 67km and says it can be charged using AC power at a maximum rate of 3.7kW, with the option to boost this to 7.4KW.

    All models feature an eight-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive.

    Tare mass is listed as 1361kg on petrol models and 1684kg on the plug-in hybrid, which also has slightly higher towing capacity – up from 725kg unbraked and 1200kg braked to 750kg and 1400kg, respectively.

    According to the documents, a sunroof will be optional on GT grades, with the latter also boasting standard “high level lighting” – likely matrix LED headlights instead of the LED units of the Allure.

    A choice of 19- or 20-inch alloy wheels will be available.

    In the UK market, the base 408 Allure rides on 17-inch alloy wheels but comes standard with LED headlights with automatic high-beam, ambient lighting linked to the drive mode, dual-zone climate control, fabric upholstery, an electrochromatic rear-view mirror and power-folding exterior mirrors with approach lighting.

    There’s also autonomous emergency braking that’s camera-based on petrol models and includes a radar on plug-in hybrid models, along with lane-keep assist.

    All 408 models also come standard with a 10-inch digital instrument cluster and a 10-inch touchscreen infotainment system with wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

    In the UK, the GT also receives keyless entry and start, colour-adjustable ambient lighting, Alcantara and leather-effect upholstery, and “full 3D” LED tail lights.

    Additional safety equipment includes adaptive cruise control with stop/go, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-positioning assist and front parking sensors.

    Unusually for this segment, the 408 can also be had with night vision.

    Peugeot has previously confirmed it will introduce an electric version of the 408 “a few months after” the combustion and plug-in hybrid models. It’s unclear whether this will be offered here.

    The Peugeot 408 measures 4687mm long, 1848mm wide, and 1478mm tall, with a 2787mm wheelbase.

    For context, the Peugeot 308 SW wagon is 51mm shorter than the 408 ‘coupe SUV’ and the 508 liftback is 63mm longer.

    The boot with the second row of seats upright measures in at 536L, which can be expanded to 1611L with the rear seats folded.

    While we don’t yet know how it will be priced in Australia, in the UK the 408 retails around £4000 (A$7000) higher in the UK compared with the related 308 hatchback.

    For reference, the 308 range in Australia is priced from $43,990 before on-roads, but opens with a GT trim instead of a price-leader Allure.

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

    Buy and Lease
    Uncover exclusive deals and discounts with a VIP referral to Australia's best dealers
    Uncover exclusive deals and discounts with a VIP referral to Australia's best dealers