Peugeot has taken the wraps off its new 508, and the French brand promises that its new five-door fastback design will ?shake up the market?.

Citing a ?stagnant? traditional D-segment sedan segment, Peugeot says it made a concerted effort to move away from the conventional boot-lid, four-door saloon shape in favour of a five-door fastback ?coup?-saloon?. The resulting shape is something not dissimilar to that of the Audi A5 Sportback (which the Paris-based brand freely admits it is targeting).

To be built at the Mulhouse plant in France, the new 508 runs on the PSA Group?s EMP2 platform, is shorter than before (4 750 mm long, versus the 4 830 mm of the outgoing car) and employs frameless doors. Peugeot describes the tailgate ? which provides access to a claimed 487 litres of luggage space (and 1 537 litres of utility space) ? as ?deftly hidden?.

Inside, Peugeot has implemented the latest interpretation of its so-called i-Cockpit layout, complete with a compact steering wheel, a 10-inch HD capacitive touchscreen and a 12,3-inch digital instrument cluster. Safety equipment (some optional, some standard) highlights include a night vision system, adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist and active blind-spot monitoring.

So, what?s under the bonnet? Well, Peugeot says the 508 will employ a range of new-generation PureTech and Blue HDi engines. The familiar 1,6-litre petrol unit will be mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission as standard, and available in two states of tune (132 kW and 165 kW).

Four diesel options will available, based on the 1,5-litre and 2,0-litre BlueHDi engines. Outputs include a 96 kW unit mated to either a six-speed manual gearbox or the eight-speed auto, as well as 118 kW and 132 kW versions (both self-shifters). A plug-in hybrid option is expected in 2019.

The new Peugeot 508 will be presented to the public at the Geneva International Motor Show in March. It?s not yet clear whether there are plans to bring this new model to South Africa.

Peugeot 508