You are here: Used Car Expert > Citroen > Citroen C3 > Citroen C3 Reviews > Citroen C3 1 6I Sensodrive

Citroen C3 1.6i SensoDrive - Citroen C3 Car Review


Added: 29 Jan 2004
Last update: 24 Dec 2009

1Citroen C3 1.6i SensoDrive picture 12Citroen C3 1.6i SensoDrive picture 2

IT OOZES quirkiness by the bucketload but is a pain to drive - welcome to the frustrating world of the new Citroen C3.

With this model, the French car-builder has produced one of THE funky-looking superminis.

But don't let its cute looks fool you into thinking it will provide a compliant drive. The truth is that the automatic 1.6 version isn't very responsive and is often jerky.

The model I road-tested was a 1.6i SensoDrive which means the car can be driven as an automatic or by using rally-style gear-changing via steering wheel-mounted panels.

In self-shift mode the model struggles quite often, especially when you plant your foot down in a desperate bid for more pulling power. My experience was that the harder you planted your foot down on the accelerator, the more the C3 would rev harder and harder for what seemed like an eternity before finally changing gear with a big jolt.

The good news is that the rally-style gear-changing feature offers a better, smoother drive. All you need to do is flick one panel for an up-change and the other panel for a down-shift.

Even then, though, the 1.6i is far from the quickest kid on the block.

The engine is capable of producing 110bhp which can take the C3 from start to 62mph in just under 12 seconds.

The model's steering and handling are both adequate rather than pin-point. In terms of performance the C3's plusses come from its economy - more than 45mpg combined - and low emissions.

Much more impressive are the model's looks. For one reason or another the C3 reminds me of cars as diverse as the Beetle, Micra and Rover 25 - but its bold-styling works really well.

The five-door supermini features rounded lines and a very friendly face.

Despite having compact dimensions the interior of the car is impressively comfortable and spacious. There's also lots of glass which makes the cabin feel light and airy and provides for a good view of the road.

The interior has a trendy feel with a two-tone dashboard, circular air vents and a number of aluminium effect fittings.

The C3 is also practical with up to 30 stowage areas including door bins and underseat drawers and a large boot.

Citroen's new 'little big car' - as the C3 is dubbed - more than punches above its weight in terms of looks and practicality. As a package though it's let down by the jerky automatic gearbox.


Citroen C3 1.6i SensoDrive Exclusive

Price:  £12,195

Mechanical: 110bhp, 1,587cc, 4cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 5-spd automatic gearbox

Max Speed:  119mph

0-62mph:  11.9 secs

Combined mpg:  45.6

Insurance Group:  5

CO2 emissions:  148g/km

BiK rating:  15%

Warranty:  3yrs/ 60,000 miles; 12yrs anti-rust;  3yrs paint

Words: Paul Malley

Keywords: citroen, c3

Other Citroen C3 Reviews

Three pot perfect for C3 (2013 Apr)
Relevance / rating:
CITROEN'S latest C3 has a new 1.2 litre three cylinder engine that suits it to a tee.I had a short drive in the new model a couple of weeks ago just outside London, which with all the traffic, was not the best place to put it through its paces.Howeve... Three pot perfect for C3

Wide view taken by Citroen (2010 Jan)
Relevance / rating:
THINGS are certainly swinging for Citroën's new C3 supermini after its debut back in December. It's the car which gives an extraordinary panoramic view through the its Zenith windscreen.This windscreen is a Citroen creation which is 36% larger than a... Wide view taken by Citroen

Citroen ends cashback (2009 Dec)
Relevance / rating:
MORE THAN a decade of money-back offers will come to an end when Citroen puts its new C3 small car range in the showrooms next year.Due to go on sale in January, the latest version of the popular supermini will be sold without the aid of cashback, th... Citroen ends cashback

Kia completes clean sweep (2012 Sep)
Relevance / rating:
FAST moving Kia’s charge up the sales charts is moving into top gear with the unveiling of four new models at the Paris Motor Show.A new Carens compact MPV and a sporty three-door pro_cee’d hatch had their world premieres at an exclusive VIP preview ... Kia completes clean sweep

Technospace lift-off for Citroen (2013 Feb)
Relevance / rating:
CITROEN has laid down a canvas of success in recent years with models like the Xsara Picasso, C4 Picasso, Grand C4 Picasso and C3 Picasso.Now the go-ahead French brand is embarking on its next step at the forefront of the compact MPV scene.With sales... Technospace lift-off for Citroen

More Citroen C3 Articles:

12345...Last »

New search

Overall score:  (1)
Add your rating: