Von “Techno Spirit” speaks peugeot and does not just mean the striking lion crest on the radiator grille, behind which the various sensors for the electronic assistants are hidden. This also means the cockpit of the new 308, which competes against the VW Golf in the compact class. When you take a seat in the car, you immediately notice the small, flattened steering wheel, the ambient light familiar from the luxury class, the inductive charging station for your cell phone and, of course, the digital cockpit. So you look over the steering wheel at the digitally displayed speedometer and rev counter, which not everyone likes.
The instrument cluster is part of the standard equipment, and the manufacturer even gives the two GT variants a three-dimensional and holographic display. What is shown as is adjustable. We didn’t like the default setting with small instruments and a large overlaid map. The alternatives appear when you press the button on the turn signal lever, you should know that.
The on-board monitor has a diagonal of ten inches and is also part of the standard equipment, but only the higher-quality model variants from the Allure onwards come with the “i-Connect Advanced” infotainment, which brings navigation and voice control and is also responsible for telephone, air conditioning and control media playback. This is largely done with your finger on the touch-sensitive display. Below it are what Peugeot calls the virtual i-Toggles. These are touch-sensitive buttons that can be programmed individually. For this purpose, the driver first selects the appropriate menu on the main screen and then an entry shown there as a key assignment. This is very cleverly done in analogy to smartphone operation. One level down there are also physical buttons, which are used to control some vehicle functions and, above all, the air conditioning.
Unfortunately, the built-in voice recognition lacks the conjured up techno spirit. It does not even recognize navigation destinations correctly. Most of the time she doesn’t recognize anything, and what is occasionally recognized is mostly wrong. Luckily, the virtual on-screen keyboard and the search function help you find your way, and then the tomtom navigation system shows its best side. It makes clear announcements that are sometimes a bit too detailed, it offers good visualization of the route and, above all, convinces with good real-time traffic information. The map shows not only the traffic disruptions, but also the petrol prices of the gas stations in the area.
All in all, the new i-Connect Advanced is not a revolution, but an immediately visible improvement over the infotainment in the old Peugeot 308. Anyone who wants to bring the young progress into the Active Pack model variant pays an extra charge of 650 to 800 euros. Unfortunately, there is no head-up display for the new 308.