Design and Engineering

Design and Engineering

Good The mid life facelift, arriving towards the end of this model’s life cycle, (from September 2009 in Australia) brings a number of worthwhile improvements to the 407. The modified suspension sees an improvement to the handling, the rear end has been gently massaged and inside new materials go some way to lifting the ambience. The five spoke alloys (16 inch on SR grade, 17 inch on the ST) are an attractive design.
Not so good The 407 is beginning to show its age (on sale here since late 2004), so not surprisingly an all new car (to go by the name 508) will replace this model sometime in 2011. The current model is by no means ugly, one of our reviewer’s even uses the word ‘elegant’ to describe the styling, however the general consensus is that the ‘gaping mouth’ like front grille, elongated nose (just look at the length of the front overhang) and almost People Mover styled windscreen looks a little awkward tied to the design from the front doors back.
Interior and Styling

Interior and Styling

Good Supportive front seats (and also the rear’s we should add) combined with a steering wheel that adjusts for both reach and rake ensures most body types should get comfortable behind the wheel. The second row comes standard with side and a rear sunblind and the decent sized boot features a cargo net and luggage tie-downs.
Not so good The interior design is becoming outdated - most obvious signs being the overdose of buttons and a too small display screen in the vertical stack centre console, a non multi function steering wheel (however the leather covered rim is nice to hold) and an interior lacking in storage (only one front cupholder). Whilst the rear bench is comfortable the amount of legroom and headroom on offer is disappointing.
Performance

Performance

Good The only engine on offer (since the late 2009 facelift) is the 2.0L turbo diesel generating 103kW (or 100kW with the six speed Automatic gearbox) of power and 320Nm of torque. As with most modern turbo diesel engines, this one works well in traffic (accelerating from 40 – 60kms/h is a pleasure thanks to the low down torque on offer) and is a great match with the now six speed Automatic gearbox (in the past this grade 407 made do with a less impressive four speed).
Not so good In isolation its fine when driven smoothly and if not asked to accelerate quickly for more than a couple of seconds; however it’s by no means a class leading engine. For example Mazda’s competing and similar priced 2.2L turbo diesel 6 produces a much higher 132kW of power and a number of medium sized luxury Euro brands beat it for fuel economy.
Ride and Handling

Ride and Handling

Good A comfortable highway and country road cruiser; tyre noise is kept to a minimum over most surfaces; well balanced handling.
Not so good The ride becomes unsettled too easily; coarse surfaces and broken bitumen is not dealt with as well as a number of competitors; the steering lacks feedback and has an unnatural feel at the straight ahead position.
Buying and Owning

Buying and Owning

Good Both grades tick the safety box with standard ABS, ESP and six airbags; the upper spec ST grade adds rear side airbags to bring the count to eight. Auto headlights and cruise control are both useful standard features with the ST grade adding dual zone climate control air-conditioning, tyre pressure sensors and electronic parking assistance front and rear. A full size spare wheel rather than a temporary space saver is another plus.
Not so good Petrol fans will be sad to see that the 407 is no longer available in this fuel type; Peugeot has also dropped the impressive V6 turbo diesel grade; the remaining four cylinder diesel is a touch too noisy at idle.