Peugeot urges new car buyers to get a grip
With snow conditions in recent winters becoming increasingly severe, Peugeot has proved its 3008 Crossover with Grip Control is more than up to the job of keeping motorists safe in snowy conditions by becoming the first two wheel drive car to scale the one-in-three steep ski slope at the Snowdome in Tamworth, the UK’s original indoor snow-covered ski slope.
While the Snowdome has been scaled by four wheeled drive cars clad with tyres specifically designed for snow, the standard 3008’s success was purely down to the advanced technology available in the multi-award winning family car.
The 3008 Crossover complete with Peugeot’s innovative Grip Control system could solve the car-buying conundrum, especially those wanting to stay on the move without the added financial and environmental costs of driving a traditional 4x4.
Standard on the 3008 SR Crossover and as a £470 option on the 3008 Sport and Exclusive HDi 112 and HDi 150 models, Grip Control is an intelligent traction control system, automatically improving the vehicle’s traction on difficult surfaces such as snow, mud, dirt tracks and wet grass, making it a car for all conditions without the disadvantages of increased weight and emissions of a standard mechanical 4x4 system.
The system works with the vehicle’s Electronic Stability Programme – ESP – to maintain the best possible traction from both front wheels. It has five selectable operating modes which can be chosen by the driver from a dedicated control mounted on the centre console.
Grip Control is also aided by the standard fitment of 215/60 R16 Michelin Latitude Tour HP "Mud & Snow" tyres, which are suitable for off-road use. These tyres have special ‘StabiliGrip’ blades within the tread pattern that can lock together to maintain good tread contact with the given terrain, whatever challenges it poses.
James Smith, Operations Manager at Tamworth’s Snowdome, who drove the 3008 up the slope, said: “I was totally astounded at its ability. The 3008 felt totally at home on the slope, more so in fact than some 4x4s that I’ve driven. It made relatively light work of the slope and that is no mean feat.”
Morgan Lecoupeur, Marketing Director, Peugeot UK, said: “This is has been a terrific exercise to demonstrate just how effective the Peugeot 3008 Grip Control is in winter conditions and offers an ideal compromise for buyers looking for 4x4 capabilities but without the associated penalties in fuel economy and higher CO2.”
In Standard mode, the vehicle’s ESP system is calibrated for typical grip levels found on normal road surfaces, where there are low levels of wheel slip.
Snow mode adapts the system to gain the best traction from each of the front wheels when the car is pulling away. As the car increases speed, the system constantly tweaks the traction control to maintain acceleration in the face of variable grip conditions. The system returns to Standard mode once you are over 31 mph.
All-terrain mode copes with mud, dirt tracks and wet grass by allowing a high level of slip on the least stable wheel when pulling away to remove excess mud and improve grip. At the same time, the wheel with the strongest grip level is given as much torque as possible. As the system is electronically controlled the torque offset between the front wheels can be as much as 100 %, well beyond normal limits for a limited slip differential. As the car gains speed, the system continually optimises wheel slip to give the driver the best possible control over the vehicle up to 50 mph.
Sand mode allows slight wheel slip on both drive wheels simultaneously, to allow the vehicle to make headway and reduce the risk of getting stuck in the sand. Here again, the control provided by this mode is superior to that of a limited slip differential. In this mode, Standard mode kicks in automatically above a speed of 75 mph.
There is also an ESP Off setting, which disconnects ESP and Grip Control up to 31 mph, giving full control to the driver. Above this speed, "ESP Standard" mode is selected automatically.