Riffing off the C4 Cactus?
Yes, but it’s not so wilfully simple and lightweight. It has actual instruments with needles, and back windows that wind down. You can even spec it without airbumps if you’re so hidebound as to find them utilitarian-looking.
What’s the spec?
It’s a mainstream supermini in size, on the Peugeot 208 platform.
So far so conventional?
Yup, but it’s all about relaxing aesthetics and comfort.
Not exciting me yet…
Well, the springs aren’t taut nor is the steering full of feel. But it’s light on its feet and doesn’t get bump-steered. It feels small but not vulnerable. I tested the 1.2-litre 3cyl petrol, turbo’d to 100bhp and a very useful 151lb ft. It goes smartly in this lightweight car, burbling quietly away. Biggest gripe is a floppy gearshift.
So, it’s all about comfort?
The suspension is nicely supple, and in the C3 is much quieter over bumps than previous PSA small cars. The seats look flat and lounge-like, but actually support you properly, unlike the superficially similar ones in the Cactus.
Does the aesthetic match?
The shapes are straight-edged with rounded corners, giving a minimalist architectural look. Seat materials are actually something you’d allow on your sofa at home. You can customise the dash and doors with padded, stitched panels.
Many options, including airbumps and three roof colours, so you can have a sombre monotone car or a cheery one.
The infotainment touchscreen is a leap ahead of most other superminis’. And it runs phone mirroring so you needn’t splash out for nav. Driver aids are on a level with most superminis, but there’s one very fresh option, a built-in dashcam. If there’s a crash it’ll keep footage of the phase before and after. In better moments, if you like the view ahead, just press a button by the rear-view mirror and it transmits a happy snap to an app on your phone that will then sends it social.
Citroen C3 Flair PureTech 110
Doesn’t move the bar dynamically but high on feelgood and lookgood