Peugeot 408 vs Citroën C5 X: Which French fastback should you lease?

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Author: | Updated: 14 May 2024 13:34

If you’re looking for a practical vehicle with a bit of flair, you aren’t short of options these days. The burgeoning market of so-called SUV-coupes and Fastback-SUVs is ever increasing.

Citroen C5 X vs Peugeot 408 front

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Two French stand-out choices in this segment are the Peugeot 408 and Citroen C5X. Both models come from brands that have had a renaissance in recent years. It’s been a long time since Peugeots have looked this good, while the C5X is the first comfortable big cruiser from Citroen since the C6.

But which is the best option if you’re looking to lease? We’ve gone deep to bring you a detailed comparison, to see if we can pick an outright winner. 

Styling and size

The pair both boast innovative design. These cars aren’t quite full SUVs, but both have large footprints – particularly the lengthy Citroen. The Peugeot is slightly more compact and merges its sleek fastback lines with SUV appeal slightly better than the Citroen. 

It features a bold front with an intricate grille and the latest Peugeot logo. Its silhouette is characterised by a high waistline, sharp creases and a sloping roof that ends in a sporty rear spoiler. It’s certainly the more aggressive looking of the two, with those fang-like daytime running lights a real feature up front.

The Citroën C5 X, on the other hand, opts for a more subdued yet sophisticated appearance. Not only has it been designed to blend swoopy looks with an SUV shape; it’s also been created to offer the spaciousness of an estate car. 

Citroen C5 X vs Peugeot 408 side

The front is marked by Citroën’s double chevron logo, flanked by sharp, high-tech headlights. The body lines are smooth, emphasising comfort and space, with a rear design that is less aggressive than the 408's.

Both vehicles offer a unique aesthetic appeal, but the choice between a sportier or more refined look will depend on personal preference. Despite its looks, the Citroen’s size and stand-out style arguably gives it more presence out on the road.

Citroen C5 X vs Peugeot 408 interior copy

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Interior and tech

Inside the Peugeot 408, drivers will find a futuristic cabin centred around Peugeot’s i-Cockpit design. This layout includes a compact steering wheel below a high-set digital instrument cluster, aimed at providing a head-up display feel.

The latest version is offered with a 3D-effect display, which works really well and gives the set-up a premium feel. The minimalist dashboard houses a large touchscreen infotainment system that supports Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

Citroën’s C5 X interior, known for its emphasis on comfort—dubbed ‘Citroën Advanced Comfort’—offers a more conventional setup but with exceptional ergonomic features.

It boasts advanced comfort seats and a soothing, lounge-like atmosphere enhanced by its Progressive Hydraulic Cushions suspension system that makes rides exceptionally smooth. The dashboard is straightforward, with a large touchscreen at its centre, also fully compatible with modern connectivity features.

The Citroen’s outright size becomes clear when you look at the boot space; the Peugeot offers between 471 litres of space, while the C5 X provides up to 545 litres of capacity. While that’s some way off something like an Octavia estate, it’s clearly the more practical of the pair.

Both interiors are well-equipped, but the Citroën C5 X focuses more on comfort and a relaxing environment, while the Peugeot 408 offers a more engaging and modern driving experience.

Citroen C5 X vs Peugeot 408 detail copy

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Drivetrains and engines

The drivetrain options in the Peugeot 408 include a range of petrol and diesel engines, along with advanced plug-in hybrid variants. These options are designed to offer a balance of power and efficiency, with the hybrids providing an impressive blend of performance and emission-free town driving.

Under the skin, these cars are very similar. They are, after all, from the same Stellantis stable. This means that engines, drivetrains and gearboxes are shared, with a host of 1.2-litre, 1.6-litre and hybrid versions on offer.

Driving-wise, the Peugeot has been designed to feel a little more dynamic behind the wheel, while the Citroen’s focus is on comfort and quietness.

408_UK_2023_EXT30

The plug-in hybrid option is the best choice for the latter if you’re after real refinement and offers great flexibility too; it’s suitable for long drives and gets a 39-mile electric-only range.

Both cars provide modern powertrains with an emphasis on reducing environmental impact, but the Citroën might appeal more to those looking for a quieter, smoother driving experience, while the Peugeot could attract those who prefer a more engaging drive.

Whichever you choose, you’ll get an eight-speed automatic gearbox and a powertrain that features a number of driving modes. We found that the Citroen is indeed the quieter of the pair, with those progressive hydraulic cushions making it a real pleasure to do lots of miles in.

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Which one should you lease?

Choosing between the Peugeot 408 and Citroën C5 X for a lease ultimately comes down to what aspects of a vehicle are most important to you. If you are drawn to sporty styling and a tech-rich interior, the Peugeot 408 might be the way to go.

However, if comfort and a smooth ride are your priorities, the Citroën C5 X stands out as the better choice. Price obviously plays a big part, and the Peugeot 408 recently won out as the Best Value Lease in the Leasing.com Awards.

Citroen C5 X vs Peugeot 408 rear

Just a short while ago, lease deals were available on the 408 for less than £200 per month. While they have increased since then, it still wins out as the most cost effective option at the time of writing. But remember, lease rates change all the time, so it’s worthwhile checking the current pricing on both models.

Whatever your decision, both vehicles offer a compelling package of style, technology, and versatility. Explore deals on both these models by hitting the buttons below.

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