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2021 Citroen C5 Aircross India review, test drive

It is been a lengthy time coming, right after pulling Peugeot out of India in...

It is been a lengthy time coming, right after pulling Peugeot out of India in 1997 and putting on hold a re-entry approach in 2012, the PSA Team (Peugeot-Citroen alliance) is now betting on the Citroen brand to make its mark in the Indian current market. So, will the French carmaker taste achievement third time spherical?  A lot is dependent on the C5 Aircross, the SUV tasked with constructing the brand and sustaining fascination in it until finally a host of far more reasonably priced, India-precise siblings arrive starting up next year.

A lot will also depend on how properly the Indian buyer reacts to quirkiness, the unconventional but appealing styling, and that almost eccentric strategy is fairly dialled up on the C5. Nonetheless, the C5 is far more than just a French manner assertion, but considering that the quirky type is the greatest conversing issue, let’s start off with that.

Just how quirky is the Citroen C5 Aircross’ type? 

We’re used to describing autos with words and phrases like sporty, sleek, muscular, butch, subtle and so on. But with the C5, it’s difficult to come up with acquainted terminology, so let’s just go with chic, coincidentally a French phrase.

The C5 Aircross has an ‘odd however attractive’ look with it really is multi-layered front and special blocky styling elements.

The C5 does a great job of balancing the ‘odd however attractive’ look, the multi-layered front has the double-chevron symbol extending out into two chrome strips encapsulating the DRLs. Underneath are the LED projector headlights flanking a fairly unconventional grille structure that has an further air intake slot below. The bumper intake is flanked by a couple of faux inlets, and fog lights sit at the severe finishes. All in, the front has a load of structure elements and judging by the reactions we acquired, even though numerous will like it, some might find it abnormal.

At the rear the taillamps with four rectangular, 3D LED modules are the standout function.

At the sides, the doorways are efficiently contoured, but the edges below have mouldings with some blocky styling elements. On our gray check motor vehicle – as also on two other overall body colors – there are silver accents on the aspect moulding, beneath the roof rails and also on the front bumper. On the white motor vehicle, on the other hand, these are performed up in orange and look really attractive and funky. All autos get 18-inch alloys that have a neat swirl-like pattern. The rear has a pair of bogus air and exhaust outlets but it’s the tail-lights that are the standout function, with every single housing four rectangular, 3D LED modules that are eye-catching even in daylight.

Does quirky use to the Citroen C5 interiors way too?

The block-like exterior structure details are in abundance on the within way too. The seats have a block-stitched surface and are really retro interesting, thanks to the gray tones offset by the white stripe.The doorway pads also have embossed blocks, and the handles are likewise styled. Even the steering wheel is like a ‘squircle’ with the bottom and prime edges flattened. Every aircon vent is also break up into two separate cubes, though they operate as a one unit.

The block like structure elements function within as properly with the seat upholstery, special dice-like air-con vents and ‘squircle’ steering.

Whilst some might find this detailing overdone, it really is tastefully executed, and the structure appears to be like refreshing. The instrumentation is a bit way too radical though and the ‘Dial’ display mode (particularly what it’s named) has nearly anything but dials! The tachometer is a bar graph, there a numeric study-out for the velocity and an further slide-rule velocity display. It is all really unconventional and really French I guess, but it definitely isn’t straightforward to study. Also, despite the instrument cluster getting a configurable digital monitor, there’s no solution for a dial display, not even in the other two modes. Toggle to Own and you can pick out to display info on the stereo functions, even though in Minimal, the only study-outs you get are speedo and odo, even the gasoline gauge is knocked out. The eight.-inch touchscreen has no dwelling website page but you can instantly entry personal functions and their options by the poking the icons on the touch panel below.

The digital instrument cluster is customiseable but won’t offer an solution for a dial display. Bar-like tacho not straightforward to study.

The C5 Aircross comes in two versions – Experience and Shine – and each are properly geared up, with the base Experience variant getting rid of out only on the panoramic sunroof, LED headlamps and a palms-absolutely free tailgate, which is common on the Shine. This suggests even the base Experience version gets goodies like an electric modify driver’s seat, twin-zone car local climate management, an air-high quality system, outside the house puddle lamps, and a touchscreen with Android Vehicle and Apple CarPlay. Lacking though are bits like wireless charging, an electric modify passenger seat and connected-motor vehicle tech.

eight.-inch touchscreen has no homescreen but personal functions can be accessed by means of a touch-delicate panel below the display.

Protection tools common on each variants contains 6 airbags, Ab muscles, ESP, terrain management modes with hill descent, blind spot warning, coffee break notify, car park guide, and a rear camera that also stitches a 360-diploma see with previous footage, this suggests though that only the rear has a dwell feed.

Seatbelt reminders for rear occupants as properly

Is the Citroen C5 comfort as considerably as it’s created out to be?

Citroen undoubtedly are conversing up ‘comfort’ – it’s fairly considerably the USP or cornerstone for the organization globally –and at the time you’re previous the fairly unconventional interiors, you will detect the large quantity of room.

The C5 is broader, taller and for a longer period than each, the Jeep Compass and Hyundai Tucson, and by a great margin, way too, when you have a look at the enough area within. Supplied the car’s size – and a person look at the deep boot – it’s apparent that legroom could have been better, but it’s ample. Using benefit of the broad cabin, Citroen has plonked in 3 independent and similar rear seats, and with every single possessing the ability to slide and recline (also fold)there’s no want to fight in excess of who has to sit in the centre.

Legroom is ample even though head and shoulder area is in abundance. Seats are cozy though lumbar aid is a touch abnormal.

The slide adjustment also will allow you to stagger 3 large travellers to make a little far more shoulder area the centre seat way too gets a height-adjustable head restraint and a 3-issue seat belt.

It is all a really ground breaking and special set up, and as a 5-seater, the C5 definitely nails it, but as a four-seater, not really so. The issues is, getting confined to an personal seat, outer travellers just can’t definitely unfold out and make use of the empty room in the center, additionally you also miss out on out on an arm relaxation. So just how at ease the rear seats are definitely is dependent on your personal use pattern.

One of a kind to the C5 Aircross are the 3 independent rear seats than can slide, recline and fold individually.

The seats by themselves are cozy enough, the foam density is just about right, though lumbar aid is a touch abnormal at the rear. The front seats are amazingly cozy and wonderful and broad as properly. A lengthy working day at the wheel didn’t leave us with any aches and pains.

Entrance seats are broad and amazingly cozy.

There’s loads of cargo room way too and even though the boot is large, at 580 litres, what is truly amazing is in-cabin storage, which Citroen claims provides up to 33 litres. The doorway pockets, cubby holes and the telephone tray are all definitely major and deep, and the centre console storage box is uncomplicated large luckily, it’s illuminated, which helps make it straightforward to find smaller products, particularly when it’s darkish.


Boot is large at 580 litres and can be expanded by adjusting or folding every single rear seat.

What is the Citroen C5 travel like?

The immediate you twirl the wheel, you realise that the comfort emphasis or ‘Citroen Innovative Comfort’ programme, as the organization calls it, extends to the whole travel experience way too. The steering is really light and it’s straightforward to manoeuvre the C5 by means of metropolis website traffic. Even at velocity, effort and hard work continues to be light and even though there is a Sport mode, it has only a smaller influence on steering feel, as also on powertrain responsiveness. This is a motor vehicle squarely aimed at those trying to get a relaxed and fulfilling travel.

two.-litre diesel develops 177hp and 400Nm of torque and provides electrical power in a robust and linear fashion. It is also really easy and refined.

If you feel this suggests a meek engine, you will be improper – the two.-litre diesel helps make 177hp and 400Nm of torque, and electrical power supply is wonderful and robust. Holding with the autos character, it’s also really linear, with no spikes and surges, even in Sport mode. Portion-throttle reaction is great and when you place your foot down at almost any velocity and you will be rewarded with a wonderful robust surge in advance.

In our assessments, we clocked 9.61sec for the -100kph dash, which for reference is more rapidly than the diesel Compass’ time of 10.30sec. Roll-on times are amazing as properly – twenty-80kph comes in at 5.89sec, even though forty-100kph requires seven.71sec this, way too, is more rapidly than the Compass, which requires 6.05sec and eight.36sec, respectively. 

Acceleration Time
-20kph one.00 sec
-40kph two.33 sec
-60kph four.eleven sec
-80kph 6.56 sec
-100kph 9.61 sec
-120kph thirteen.39 sec
-140kph 18.33 sec
-160kph 25.thirteen sec
twenty-80kph (in kickdown) 5.89 sec
forty-100kph (in kickdown) seven.seventy one sec

Amplifying the engine’s strength is the eight-velocity gearbox that does not hurry by means of its cogs and holds on to reduce gears for for a longer period, this suggests you’re rarely out of the meaty electrical power band, which commences at close to one,800rpm and builds properly until someplace close to the four,000rpm mark. I say ‘somewhere’ as it’s almost difficult to properly study the tacho bar, and no issue the travel mode, or even if you’re in full manual mode and shifting with the paddles, the motor vehicle will upshift. It is all about comfort then, no noisy engine, though at bigger revs, you can hear the diesel drone within.


eight-velocity car ‘box keeps the SUV in the meat of the powerband and will automatically upshift at close to four,000 rpm even in manual mode.

Which brings me to cabin insulation – in addition to the frequent sound-deadening products, the C5 uses double-laminated front windows and a windshield glass that lowers sound stages. It does get the job done and for most parts, cruising in the C5 is a tranquil affair, though in excess of some street surfaces, you hear tyre sounds and in excess of sharp ruts and edges, you will hear a ‘whack’ from the suspension.

What does the Citroen C5 suspension feel like?

Apart from some sharp edges that capture the suspension out, the C5 does as advertised, which is to sail in excess of undesirable roadways and produce a definitely wonderful and pliant trip. Damaged surfaces and stripped away tarmac do not bother the motor vehicle and retaining substantial speeds in excess of undesirable stretches is really straightforward. The secret below is the C5’s dampers or what Citroen simply call ‘Progressive Hydraulic Cushions’.

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Citroen’s ‘Progresive Hydraulic Cushions’ suspension soaks up undesirable roadways and off street trails properly though you will feel a thud in excess of sharp edges.

They utilise further springs within and, importantly, hydraulic chambers as bump stops (frequent bump stops are usually rubber).These slowly or progressively gradual down the damper stroke, giving the motor vehicle a wafting-on-air kind of feel. On the flipside, this also responsible for the thuds that filter by means of in excess of sharp edges. This is simply because, as the compression builds up, the powerful damping charge rises sharply, comparable to air springs in which the air compresses promptly towards the stiff finish of their journey.

The Aircross’ softer suspension does direct to some overall body roll and the nose tends to bob beneath aggressive braking, but grip is really great.

On the entire though, the trip high quality is undoubtedly a substantial issue for the C5, and for the vast majority of its suspension journey, it will feel really pliant and composed, giving you a wonderful and plush trip. This does signify that dealing with isn’t its forte though, even though tyre grip is great, the softer springs signify there is overall body roll and you will even detect some further pitch that gets the nose bobbing when you dab the spongy brake pedal a little aggressively. Set up for comfort, the C5 does not have the sharp responses of, say, a Compass. What it also misses out on is four-wheel travel, but there are terrain reaction modes for better traction in excess of free surfaces like mud and snow, and there’s also a hill descent mode.

No four-wheel travel but terrain reaction modes allow for you to change electrical power supply and braking features for better traction in excess of free surfaces.

You can tackle an odd off-overwhelmed trail, but this isn’t some thing to conquer a new path into the forest with, nor some thing you’d throw corners at, but the organization helps make no apologies about that. This is a motor vehicle aimed squarely at those trying to get a relaxed and fulfilling travel, and it provides that in spades.

Really should you get the Citroen C5 Aircross?

Citroen is really considerably the newcomer – it’s brand that has not existed in modern India until finally now and is mainly unfamiliar. But to compensate for the absence of brand awareness, really do not anticipate Citroen to peg the C5 at an aggressively very low price tag. The C5 is unlikely to be low-priced and in accordance to organization sources the entry variant will be pegged at close to Rs 30 lakh. At that price tag, there will not be numerous takers for the C5 but with only 10 dealers to start off with, plainly, volumes is not the concentrate on. The organization thinks it’s below for the lengthy haul and would like its solutions and companies to speak for by themselves. Like their haute couture manner then, the French imagine in paying for what you get, also considerably akin to substantial manner, it’s not for everyone.

The C5 isn’t for those trying to get sharp dealing with or critical off-roading, nor will those ground breaking rear seats be what the one, chauffeur-pushed owner is hunting for. But that’s particularly what helps make the C5 so terrific, it isn’t striving to remember to all, fairly it’s chosen a established of parameters and determined to definitely double down on those.

The motor vehicle appears to be like chic and comes as a breath of clean air, and it nails its mentioned mission of comfort with amazing trip high quality, amazing refinement and an straightforward-to-travel mother nature aided by a light steering and a easy and responsive engine. Also, there’s enough room within and the tools list is really complete way too. So, even though the C5 perhaps usually French, its chosen emphasis points are standard Indian requirements, and that’s what Citroen will undoubtedly be counting to open a robust innings in India.

Also see:

Citroen C5 Aircross India video clip review

Citroen India dealership locations shown