At the rate of one launch of model year, Citroën has invented a new life. The umpteenth for the brand to the rafters from which nothing has been spared during its hundred years of existence, the familiar repeatedly the abyss. Since the label DS gained its independence in 2014, siphoning a part of the repertoire of his mentor, the rafters have been asked to rebuild. The plan, devised by Xavier Peugeot, product manager, has put a priority on the SUV, the figure that turned heads of motorists around the world. It succeeds rather well. Gradually, the brand find the level of his former life, despite the disappearance of the bus C5, and the disenchantment is growing for the minivan. To accompany the new order established, Citroën is launching in the next few days a compact SUV, the C5 Aircross, cousin of the Peugeot 3008, DS7 Crossback and Opel Grandland X. Well in his skin, this vehicle makes you forget a first experience inconclusive in the segment (C-Crosser), with the support of Mitsubishi.

Curves and colors Up to the mid foot, the SUV Citroën is almost identical to the Peugeot 3008. Citroën

While they share 60 % of parts common with the 3008, the SUV Citroën retains its own personality. The aggression claimed the model as coach of sochaux, he opposes volumes smooth, in continuity with the past achievements of the brand. The spirit of family permeates through the grille, double floor, the pavilion seemingly floating, especially with the black roof, and the famous Airbumps, lighter on the lower body and assorted splashes of colour. This great Aircross boasts no less than 30 combinations by combining the 7 body colours including an orange dare, the 3 colors of inserts and the roof black (+ 350 €). If it makes it all length 280 mm in the sedan C5, to which he succeeded on the chains of the factory of Rennes, this fighter experienced sees its wheelbase stretched by 55 mm compared to the 3008. Of all the SUV PSA, it is the highest (1.67 m) and the one that has the most ground clearance (23 cm). On the technical level, it lacks the all-wheel-drive that distinguishes a true adventurer from a crossover. And the arrival of a plug-in hybrid in the first quarter of 2020, will change nothing since it is the version with 225 hp that has been selected. The four-wheel-drive (300 hp) are reserved for the DS7 Crossback and 3008.

A modular mpv The steering wheel has a wide range of settings. The central tunnel statement will help ensure a good driving position. Citroën

Citroën leaves the boldness and originality of the i-Cockpit Peugeot to offer a dashboard-conventional but well-equipped. The perceived quality does not have to be ashamed of the comparison to a model that is at the heart of the segment in terms of rates (from 24 700 €) and that is characterized, in a market that is somewhat frozen, with references to the world of luggage and new sets of upholstery particularly successful, regardless of the material used (fabric, mixed fabric and leather or nappa leather). The presence of hard plastics, especially in the lower parts, and the graphics dated, screens shade the rather positive results of a purposeful interior (33 liters of storage space) and converted to the digital instrumentation. The slab opposite the driver offers a multitude of customization possibilities while traffic in the middle shelf relies on shortcut keys. The SUV of the rafters takes advantage of its template to display a habitability satisfactory to the back seats. He would seek to divert families from the C4 Space Tourer that he would not take otherwise. The functionality and modularity have been treated.

At the rear, the C5 Aircross has three seats are identical and individual. Citroën

unlike the chinese version on the market since 2017, the european model has replaced the back bench by three individual seats that did not flow from the source and in which the decision was arbitrated by Carlos Tavares. They run individually on 150 mm and which records are to bow to an amplitude of 7.5 degrees (from 19 to 26.5 degrees). They fold individually to form a flat floor, using straps a little recalcitrant. To finish you convert to C5 Aircross, the manufacturer ensures that it can accommodate a bag over in his minivan C4. With the presence of the spare wheel galette (+ 120 €), the trunk is reduced by 30 litres but remains among the best in the class. The volume ranges from 550 to 690 litres depending on the position of the rear seats. It may be increased to 1 600 litres, for a loading length of 1.90 m.

Five trim levels are offered and the orders that have already been signed show a preference for the high-end version Shine. It incorporates many of the aids to the conduct of a program by counting up to twenty, including adaptive cruise control with stop & go function and maintaining in the way.

soft and DS Even on the most rugged, this SUV maintains suspension comfort royal. Citroën

It is on the road than the C5 Aircross takes its distances with its rivals. Especially if you are travelling on roads, such as those we encountered during our test drive at the foot of the moroccan Atlas mountains, are in a very bad state, multiplying the deformations, ruts and speed bumps. This SUV pulls down his secret weapon: the program of the Advanced Comfort. It consists of upholstered seats (+ 15 mm thickness) and more fluffy and suspensions with stops and hydraulic. This fighter family is not far to recreate the effect flying carpet that characterized the famous hydro-pneumatic suspension developed by the brand with the DS. Without that efficiency was being affected really, this royal comfort in all circumstances is paid by a slight catch roll, movements of diving accents to the brake and a propensity to pump when the pace picks up on a road that is bumpy. The brake pedal we also seemed to lack bite. Anyway, the versions tried, although the most powerful of the range at launch (180 hp) do not lend themselves to this kind of antics. They are associated to an automatic box to 8 reports the ratio of long promotes consumption rather than the dynamic. In fact, they are not affected by the penalty.

The system Grip Control, managed from a rotary wheel is optional. Citroën

The diesel version ensures times stronger but at the expense of sounding unpleasant, well attenuated by an acoustic perfectly controlled. Smaller riders may prefer the petrol version, the more efficient but devoid of character. With the Sport mode, the steering gains a addition welcome firmness. On roads made more dangerous by the abundant rains, ifut all-wheel-drive, the system Grip Control, incorporating the assistance of descent (300 to 700 € depending on the finish), and playing on the settings of the EPS as a function of the adhesion of the field, has proved to be a valuable ally. In these conditions, the rear wiper has been too small to properly clean the rear window.

Our opinion

The C5 Aircross achieves a master-stroke by offering a new synthesis between an SUV and a minivan, while ensuring a comfort far above the lot and never seen at this level range. The offer is even more attractive as the prices are at the heart of the market, slightly higher than the Ford Kuga, but lower than the nearly 1 000 euros to its cousin, the Peugeot 3008.

technical Sheet

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Displacement: 1 598 and 1 997 cm3, 4-cyl. turbo petrol and diesel

Power: 180 hp at 5,500 rpm/min and at 3.750 rpm

Torque: 250 Nm to 1,650 and 400 Nm at 2,000 r/min

Transmission: Pull, Box car 8 reports

Dimensions (L/w/h mm): 4,500 x 1 969 x 1 654 mm

Safety deposit box: 580 liters (without spare wheel cake)

Weight: 1 430 1 540 kg

Performance (0-100 km/h): 8.2 and 8.6 seconds

Speed: 219 and 211 km/h

Consumption (mixed EU): 5.7-and 4.7 l/100 km

Emissions (CO2): 129 and 124 g/km

Price: 33 150 36 050 €

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