We take a drive in the new Citroen C4 Aircross Diesel and see how it fares.
StylingThe Citroen C4 Aircross shares the same platform as the Peugeot 4008 and the Mitsubishi ASX, and there are similarities between all three cars. However the Citroen looks the best out of the three as it incorporates the stereotypical DS-like front end with its vertical daytime running lights and prominent chevron badge on the nose. Compared to the rather ordinary looking Mitsubishi, the Citroen C4 Aircross diesel has a refreshingly European look about it and it's quite distinctive, especially in vivid red.
PowerplantUnderneath the bonnet you'll find a 1.6-litre turbocharged diesel engine with 84 kW and 270 Nm. Off the line performance isn't terrible, but there is some lag. In-gear acceleration and overtaking is where you'll find the Citroen C4 Aircross diesel dominates. Another thing it dominates is fuel consumption. During the week I had it, fuel consumption hovered around the 5.5l/100km mark - impressive for a vehicle of this size.
PracticalityThere's a generous helping of standard features too. It's quite an upmarket package with plenty of soft-touch plastics and a leather-clad wheel. There are also heated leather seats for the driver and passenger available as an option. Rear space is a little tight for larger adults, but perfect for children.
Standard specificationEquipment fitted as standard includes a height & reach adjustable steering column, multifunction steering wheel, cruise control, auto dimming rear view mirror, climate control as well as half-decent USB/Bluetooth/Aux six-speaker sound system. There's also park distance control, which I found rather useful. Automatic headlights and wipers round off a rather well-specced offering.
I was surprised to see the lack of all-wheel drive in this particular variant, as I believe the combination of a solid diesel motor and 4x4 ability go hand in hand. The ground clearance is 200 mm and that's quite handy if you want to try tackle undulating terrain. Gravel and tar is where the Citroen C4 Aircross will excel.
Ride and handlingIt's interesting to point out Citroen took the existing ASX platform and changed the suspension as well as the damper settings. This means the ride is surprisingly good and smooth. Even when driving at speed on gravel, you're not tossed about. It's such a quality drive and you can soak up all the road's imperfections thanks to its multi-link suspension.
Citroen C4 Aircross Diesel price in South AfricaAt R361 900, you're getting a competent family SUV which offers reasonable performance with great fuel economy. This engine is great as it skirts the pointless CO2 emissions tax. Thrown in for extra measure is a three year / 100 000km warranty, five year / 100 000km manufacturer service plan as well as three year's worth of roadside assistance. It's not a class leader, but it does everything ask of it and you can't fault that.
Citroen C4 Aircross Diesel Quick Specs
|Engine||1.6-litre four-cylinder diesel|
|Power||84 kW @ 3 600 rpm|
|Torque||270 Nm @ 1 750 rpm|
|Transmission||6-speed manual gearbox|
|0-100km/h||10.5 seconds (claimed)|
|Fuel economy||4.6l/100km (claimed)|
. Styling . Engine . Ride quality . Standard specification . Ground clearance