Peugeot Bipper Tepee MPV (2009 – ) expert review

By Andy Goodwin, 15th November 2010

The verdict

The Peugeot Bipper Tepee is cheap to run and offers excellent practicality, but if creature comforts are important, the Skoda Roomster is more car-like.

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Expert rating:

2.9

Pros

  • Huge boot
  • Good value for money
  • Easy to park

Cons

  • It’s too slow
  • Basic interior
  • Ride can get bouncy

Full Review

1. Exterior

It’s obvious the Peugeot Bipper Tepee is based on a van, but it is quite a funky van. With a huge grille and front bumper, it has a friendly look shared with the Citroen Nemo Multispace and Fiat Qubo. The tall, boxy shape is purely functional, so it’s not as elegant as the Skoda Roomster or Citroen C3 Picasso.

Our rating: 3

2. Interior

The Bipper Tepee has a van-like interior with an upright driving position behind a functional dashboard. The seats are comfortable, and visibility is excellent, but there’s little inside to excite. We can forgive the Bipper Tepee its basic interior though, thanks to its low starting price and the fact it will be used as a second, utility vehicle by most owners.

Our rating: 2

3. Practicality

The key to this car is its boxy shape, which gives a tall, wide and reasonably long load space. The boot measures 356 litres with all five seats in place, but increases to 886 litres up to parcel shelf height with the rear seats folded down. Folding the seats or removing the rear seats altogether requires a bit of muscle, as they are quite heavy. The Bipper’s most practical feature is the sliding side doors, which set it apart from the Roomster (450-litre boot) and C3 Picasso (385-litre boot). Anchor points and bungee cords are useful to secure loads.

Our rating: 4

4. Ride and handling

The Bipper Tepee has a surprisingly firm ride, which tends to get bouncy over speed bumps and rough pieces of road. The upside is reasonable handling, with little body roll and reasonable grip. The steering is very light, which makes the Bipper Tepee very easy to nip around town in.

Our rating: 2

5. Performance

There’s a 1.4-litre HDi diesel with 68bhp or a 1.4-litre petrol with 75bhp, neither of which offers especially good performance. The diesel takes 18.7 seconds to reach 62mph, and can struggle uphill on motorway inclines, needing a down change to fourth gear to maintain speed. The C3 Picasso and Roomster offer much more overtaking grunt and cruise more happily at the national speed limit.

Our rating: 2

6. Running costs

While the diesel might not offer great performance, it’s cheap to run.  Impressive 63mpg average fuel consumption is possible, while the Bipper Tepee emits 119g/km of CO2, making road tax free in the first year of ownership and placing it in a low tax band. The petrol manages 43mpg and emits 155g/km of CO2. The 1.6-litre diesel Roomster and C3 Picasso manage 60 and 61mpg and emit 124g/km and 119g/km of CO2 respectively.

Our rating: 5

7. Reliability

This model was conceived as a van and should therefore be as tough as old boots, which takes a high mileage in its stride. Peugeot performs well in the Reliability Index.

Our rating: 4

8. Safety

Seatbelt pre-tensioners are fitted along with driver, passenger and side airbags and two rear bench Isofix child seat mounting points. The near-identical Citroen Nemo Multispace scored only three out of five stars in EuroNCAP crash testing. The Citroen C3 Picasso scored four stars, while the Roomster scored five (in the less stringent pre-2009 EuroNCAP tests). Disappointingly, electronic stability programme isn’t available even as an option.

Our rating: 2

9. Equipment

Two trim levels are available, S and Outdoor, the first getting a radio/CD player, electric front windows, electric heated door mirrors and remote central locking. Outdoor models feature roof bars, anti-lock brakes, raised suspension, engine sump guard, air-con and front fog lights. It’s much more workmanlike than the plusher rivals.

Our rating: 2

10. Why buy?

What it lacks in luxury the Bipper Tepee makes up for in usefulness.

Our rating: 3

Expert review 2.9stars

  • Exterior3
  • Interior2
  • Practicality4
  • Ride and handling2
  • Performance2
  • Running costs5
  • Reliability4
  • Safety2
  • Equipment2
  • Why buy?3

Our recommendations

Best on a budget:

Bipper S 1.4 8v

Just over £10k for a car this practical is great value

Best-seller:

Bipper S 1.4 HDi

Best economy and low emissions make this our recommendation

Blow the budget:

Bipper Outdoor 1.4 8v

Raised suspension, roof bars and a tough look add some extra style

The key to this car is its boxy shape, which gives a tall, wide and reasonably long load space