ENGINES – Recent years have seen an upturn in the performance of Citroen’s small engines, with the C3 Picasso and its ilk benefiting greatly improved performance and economy. Petrol power remains the smart move for most buyers unless you intend on racking up company car-like distances.
EXTERIOR – Tall and a little boxy, the C3 Picasso’s role in life goes a long way to dictating how it would look. The result is a car that, while it shares the C3 name with its supermini cousin, it shares little in the looks department.
INTERIOR – A noticeably plusher interior than the C3 hatch, the cabin of this mini people carrier promises to deliver an upmarket interior ambience. It’s also a more versatile cabin, offering the ability to swallow a good deal of belongings – especially with the rear seats folded down.
DRIVING – Citroen never pitched the C3 Picasso as a car for keen drivers, and it’s clear when behind the wheel that the overall bias is heavily towards comfort. The car’s supple ride and lofty driving position make for a relaxing drive, while the willing engines help round out the experience.
OWNERSHIP – Boasting a compact footprint, the C3 Picasso is an ideal car for urban duties. Easy to park and brisk enough to maintain a good pace with traffic, it’s a good choice for the commute, school run and weekly shop. Boot space with the rear seats up is okay, but is greatly enhanced when you fold them flat.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR – As a family-focused car, be alert to cabin trim damage such as broken plastics or soiled upholstery. And for a car destined to do countless short journeys, makes sure you conduct a thorough test drive to identify any glitches such as soggy brakes and tired suspension.
2009: Citroen launches the C3 Picassio, a mini people carrier with a supermini-style footprint. Well equipped and boasting a choice of petrol and diesel small capacity engines, upmarket cabin design and ambience positions car above the regular C3 compact hatch.
REASONS TO BUY – stylish exterior, practical interior, engine range, well equipped
REASONS TO BEWARE – low power engine performance when fully loaded, not a car for keen drivers
PICK OF THE RANGE – C3 Picasso 1.6VTi Exclusive
WHAT TO PAY
2009 09 8,215
2009 59 8,610
2010 10 9,315
2010 60 9,810
2011 11 11,010
2001 61 11,525
Figures relate to showroom prices for cars in A1 condition.