May 22, 2019

2019 Peugeot Rifter First Drive Review

Practical and affordable five or seven seat MPV

The Peugeot Rifter has just arrived in Ireland
The Peugeot Rifter has just arrived in Ireland

The new Peugeot Rifter has just arrived in Ireland and goes on sale priced from €23,540. The Rifter replaces the Partner Tepee MPV, with a focus on practicality and versatility at good value pricing. Caroline drove from Cork to Dublin in the new Peugeot Rifter at the recent Irish press launch.

Styling

The Peugeot Rifter is essentially a van-based MPV and there is only so much you can do to make a van attractive. But Peugeot has persevered, borrowing SUV characteristics from the 3008 and 5008 SUVs – a high ride height, large wheels, and wheel arch and rear bumper protection. It’s also available in a high spec GT Line, which gives the Rifter considerable more visual chutzpah at a price.

Interior

The interior of the new Peugeot Rifter does not betray its van roots – you’ll know you’re driving something a bit more basic. There’s loads of hard plastics and not much in the way of glamour. But the Rifter still gets a version of Peugeot’s quirky i-Cockpit and there is a slick looking touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard.

Practicality

Practicality is the Rifter’s middle name! The new Peugeot Rifter is available in two lengths, with 5 or 7 seats. This van-based MPV maximises space for occupants with its dimensions and boxy shape. There is loads of headroom and legroom and three individual seats in the rear. There is extra storage and cubby holes throughout the cabin. There’s a wide boot opening with a separate opening window, 775 litre boot and sliding side doors for ease of access.

The interior of the Peugeot Rifter
The interior of the Peugeot Rifter

Engines

There are two petrol engines and four diesel engines: a 1.2 PureTech petrol 110bhp S&S 6-speed; a 1.2 PureTech petrol 130bhp automatic 8-speed S&S (April 2019); a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 75bhp 5-speed; a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 100bhp 5-Speed; a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 130bhp 6-Speed S&S; and a 1.5 BlueHDi diesel 130bhp automatic 8-Speed S&S.

On the road

If you are used to driving a car, the Peugeot Rifter might feel peculiar for a bit. But after a while you soon settle in. The test car was powered by the 1.5-litre BlueHDI diesel with 100hp and a five speed manual gearbox. Power was adequate and in car refinement and comfort is fine for long journeys. We’ll be spending more time with the Rifter later in the year and will bring you a full road test and driving impressions then!

Equipment

Peugeot Ireland is selling the Rifter in three trims: Active, Allure and GT Line.

Standard equipment includes 8” touchscreen, digital instrument panel, 16” wheels, full size spare wheel, air conditioning, Active Safety Brake, Lane Keeping Assist and Speed Limit Recognition.

The Allure gains 16” alloys, rear parking sensors, auto lights and wipers, leather steering wheel, front fog lights, folding front passenger seat, electric parking brake, 3 individual magic flat seats in row 2 and electric rear windows.

The GT Line adds 17” alloys, keyless access and start, High Beam Assist, Traffic Sign Recognition and Advanced Driver Attention Alert, dark tinted rear windows, front and rear parking aid, dual zone climatronic air conditioning and GT Line styling.

The Peugeot Rifter has many practical features including the rear tailgate window
The Peugeot Rifter has many practical features including the rear tailgate opening window

Pricing

Active models are available from €23,540, Allure from €25,570, and GT Line from €28,400.

Rivals

The Peugeot Rifter will go up against the Ford Tourneo, Opel Combo Life and Volkswagen Caddy Life.

Verdict

The Peugeot Rifter enters the MPV market with a price and engine range advantage over the Volkswagen and Ford rivals. On first glance, the Rifter deserves a closer look as the blend of space and practicality make it searingly good value. I look forward to bringing you a full report after a road test later in the year!

The new Peugeot Rifter is available from €23,540
The new Peugeot Rifter is available from €23,540

Caroline Kidd