Appreciated by families for its sense of hospitality, the C5 has sold more than 250,000 copies since its launch in 2018.
Still manufactured in Rennes, this year it adopts a new, more vertical front end, a shiny black grille, smaller but more dynamic, and headlights with a new light signature.
The sportier bumper incorporates functional air intakes. Everything is concentrated on the front face, except for the rear lights with a more raised design.
A narrow range
C5 Aircross is offered in petrol, diesel and plug-in hybrid. In essence, it is the inevitable 1.2 l of 130 hp which is at work with a 6-speed manual gearbox or an EAT8 automatic.
In diesel, it is still a 130 hp and, in plug-in hybrid (a motorization on the rise), it is the 225 hp version which is offered (PureTech 180 hp EAT8 and 80 kW electric motor). It is the 130 hp petrol version that we chose for our test.
From Feel pack, an interesting endowment
If the engine proposals are reduced, the C5 Aircross is available in 5 finishes: Live, Feel, Feel pack, Shine, Shine pack, reinforced by a start-of-market finish: C-series on the Feel pack base but with navigation and screen 10 inches. The low finishes inherit the 8-inch panel.
Note, the Live version benefits from suspensions with progressive hydraulic stops, but ignores the Advanced comfort seats. It is the Feel pack finish which constitutes the heart of the range with a serious endowment.
Inside, Citroën has improved perceived quality: quality of materials, ergonomics. The central console has been redesigned, the multimedia screen increases to 10 inches on the versions with combustion engine navigation (and from the Feel version in hybrid), in a revised dashboard. A 10” screen which is not hyper reactive compared to the competition.
In front of the driver, the 12.3-inch digital handset is customizable but the definition is not extraordinary.
The Advanced comfort seats are even softer (an addition of 15 mm of additional foam) and the rear seats retain their functions: independent, sliding, reclining and retractable. As for the trunk, the thermal versions accommodate up to 720 l of luggage.
Is the C5 dynamic?
Thanks to the sobriety of the 1.2 l, the 130 hp C5 Puretech with its EAT8 box is not too penalized with regard to the penalty, which remains contained between 740 and 1,070 € depending on the finish. But can this small engine provide decent performance for this family SUV?
The C5 enjoys the flowing ride; the considerate behavior of the family SUV is accompanied by precise but fairly light steering.
Approaching the hinterland of Nice and its small winding roads, the C5 quickly loses its luster. The 1.2 l pulling just over 1,400 kg, the EAT8 box starts to work very hard and sometimes hesitates between two gears. Jerks spoil the comfort, as do significant body movements and a fairly marked body roll.
In town and on small roads, the C5 is appreciated when the box connects the gears discreetly and we will like its softness. On the engine side, there is a great improvement in hearing comfort thanks to extensive soundproofing.
In short, in “father” use, the C5 is certainly the most comfortable in its category. The icing on the cake, the prices – if they go up a little – are still a little lower than the direct competition.
Citroen C5 Aircross 1.2 Puretech 130 EAT8 Shine
Engine: 3-cylinder, gasoline direct injection, turbo, variable intake, stop & start, 1,199 cc
Transmission: front-wheel drive, 8-speed automatic
Power: 131 hp at 5,500 rpm
Torque: 230 Nm at 1,750 rpm
Weight (kg): 1,420
Dimensions (LxWxH): 4.50m × 1.96m × 1.69m
Maximum speed: 188 km/h
Standard tyres: 225/55 R 18
Price model tested: €36,950
Range: from €27,850 to €47,250