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First Drive – Citroën C4 Picasso

The new generation C4 Picasso

The new generation C4 Picasso

 

We travelled to Lisbon to drive Citroën’s New C4 Picasso ahead of its September launch

What is it? At the heart of a good MPV is a simple design brief; it needs to be fun to drive and cope with the demands of family life.  The Citroën C4 Picasso is a new twist on the original Picasso theme and it offers style and space in abundance. Shorter and lower than the model it replaces this sleek new compact MPV will arrive here next month.

First impressions of the new Citroën C4 Picasso:  This is what Citroën do best, stylish, well designed and affordable family cars. With styling hints from the current DS range the new Picasso is very striking looking. The lights in particular, from the thin strip of LEDs in the front to the signature fog lamps are beautiful details.

What about the interior? The cabin is airy and light thanks to the glass roof and the extended windscreen. Behind the wheel the driving position is good and the nicely supportive seats combined with the head and leg room make for a very appealing cabin. The dashboard is all very high tech with all of the car functions controlled through a large, easy to use 7” touch-screen. A second 12” panoramic HD screen displays other information such as cruise control and speed limiting settings.

Two screens - a 7" touchpad and 12" panoramic HD screen make for an uncluttered dash

Two screens – a 7″ touchpad and 12″ panoramic HD screen make for an uncluttered dash

Passengers are well looked after front and back while clever touches such as airline-style footrest gives the interior a premium feel. There is more space for luggage than the previous C4 Picasso and it also boasts the biggest boot in class at 537-litres.

And on the road? At the launch in Lisbon we drove the 115bhp 1.6 e-HDI Diesel engine. Once behind the wheel the benefit of the reduced weigh is revealed and it feels nimble and light.  The ride and handling are vastly improved from the previous version.
Citroën C4 Picasso and the city:  Around the city, the car is tuned for comfort and it is smooth and easy to manoeuvre.
Citroën C4 Picasso and the open road: On the motorway it handles just like a car, which is exactly what you want from an MPV. It is refined with virtually no wind, engine or road noises making it the perfect long distance cruiser for those spring and summer breaks. It rolls a little on bends but no more than you would expect from a car of this size.

How Much? Citroen are not likely to confirm pricing until closer to the launch date but indications are that pricing will be similar to the current €26,595 starting price of the C4 Picasso.

How Safe? According to Citroën the C4 Picasso is stronger and stiffer then the car it replaces so provides better protection all round, for driver and passengers, in the event of a crash.  There is also a host of safety features including a lane departure warning system that will tug at the driver’s seatbelt if the car should stray out of its lane along with radar guided Active Cruise control that maintains a constant gap with the car in front. A new blind spot monitoring function is also available. It also comes with a five-star NCAP safety rating.

 What about my options: When the C4 Picasso launches in September the  e-HDi 90 Airdream engine will also be available with a new 6-speed clutchless gearbox that has emissions of a mere  98g/km and  fuel economy of 3.8 L/100km  or 74mpg.

3 words to describe the Citroën C4 Picasso: Versatile; Stylish, Frugal

 

For more information check out Citroen.ie or the Citroen Ireland Facebook page

 

Geraldine Herbert

 

28th June, 2013

 

 

Author: Geraldine Herbert

Contributing Editor and Motoring Columnist for the Sunday Independent and editor of wheelsforwomen. Geraldine is also a regular contributor to Good Housekeeping (UK) and to RTÉ Radio One, Newstalk, TodayFM and BBC Radio. You can follow Geraldine on Twitter at @GerHerbert1

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