Citroen C3While some of us will go out and buy a new car based on what’s currently the hottest car of the moment – I myself, tend to do the opposite of this and instead go and look at what I would consider to be the outsider

- the underdog as to say. Of course I’m not saying that this week’s test of the C3 is any of those things – but, for it to stand any chance of doing well, the new C3 will have to pull off something pretty special if it wants to take sales away from the likes of Ford, Fiat or Vauxhall.

Saying that though, Citroen does tend to have a knack of making a good small car – so I’m really not that worried – because for a start off, it actually looks pretty good – and that’s half the battle won when you place a new product against the competition.

So, to find out if the C3 really is as good as the glossy brochure sitting in front of me says it is – then let’s get a move on and see if it’s a worthy contender in a market currently flooded with likeable small cars from a range of different manufacturers.

Power and Efficiency:

The C3 I currently have on test is powered by a 3 cylinder 1199cc - 5 speed turbo charged petrol engine that has 110HP and a very respectable top speed of 117mph, plus a 0-62 time of 9.3 seconds - which in my book is not too bad at all for a 3 cylinder. Fuel consumption is also very good with a combined figure of 61.4 mpg.

On the road:
It’s a little soft, but into the corners it feels very well balanced. A big plus for the C3 is that it has a decent amount of torque – in fact it has 205Nm of it - which allows it to pull very well from pretty much any gear – which surprisingly, made the C3 a joy to drive no matter what the road conditions were. The brakes also felt good and firm – as for the suspension - it actually absorbs England’s bumpy roads really well, although as I said earlier - it was a little bouncy, but in a fun way.

Design & Technology:
As with all Citroens, the interior is not bad – but I don’t like how Citroen have mixed up the interior colours. For instance my test car was fitted with brown patches all over it – and that really didn’t work for me at all. On a positive note though – it does have easy to read dials and all the controls are in the right place and well set out. There is however a small problem. Some of the interior plastics look cheap, and I think they should have dumped the fancy colourful interior and instead paid a little bit more attention to some of the plastics used on the inside.

Standard equipment is good such as, ABS/EBD/EBA, hill start assist, Driver & front passenger lateral & curtain airbags, iPod/MP3 connection, automatic air conditioning, six speakers, steering wheel-mounted audio control and split/folding rear seats.

You also get a brilliant Media Sound System which Includes satellite navigation, a seven inch colour touch-screen, display, DAB radio tuner and Bluetooth audio with USB connectivity.

To sum up:
I am going to finish it here, but, I’m going to give the C3 four stars in this test, not only because I like its looks on the outside, but also because I believe it’s worth taking a look at.

Price: £16,425 (from) OTR MRRP

By Anthony Yates