I'm spending a couple of weeks in a 308 GTI at the moment while the 208 is away having a rear-end rattle diagnosed and hopefully fixed. I miss it. While the 308 is essentially very much of the same but in a larger package with more space, power and some additional maturity, given the choice I'd stick with my long-termer. There's no doubt that a 308 is better suited to someone requiring the extra space and doors, but I don't and despite the boost in performance, it doesn't leave the 208 feeling like it's lacking in any way.
Driving more powerful cars is undeniably intoxicating, but I find that I spend more time frustrated not being able to use all of the power on the road. At least where I live in Kent, where I probably spend 95 per cent of my time driving. And while Matt may have concluded that Toyota was the Star Baker in that round, the day confirmed that you don't really need any more power to have huge amounts of fun. You can squeeze out every bit of power, extending each gear without going excessively fast, yet going quickly enough to get your heart beating faster and put a big smile on your face. Both felt relatively lightweight, predictable and playful through the corners, changing directly as quickly as you could turn the wheel. You might not be able to keep up with that guy in front in his M3, but I bet you're having just as much fun.
So whether you've got £2,000 to spend on a Renaultsport Clio or £20,000 (or £200 a month) on a 208 GTI or GT86 fresh from the factory, there's something out there for everyone. For me, the supermini hot hatch segment is going to be one of the most exciting for 2018 and I can't wait to see what Peugeot comes up with next.
Car: Peugeot 208 GTI by Peugeot Sport
Run by: Ben
On fleet since: November 2017
List price new: £23,550 (As tested £24,250 comprising £250 for Peugeot Connect SOS & Assistance, £250 for Active City Brake and £200 for Reversing Camera)
Last month at a glance: Straightforward, good looking and powerful enough - Ben's Peugeot is still going well too!