The Citroen C4 may look like an SUV, Citroen describes it as a blend of car, hatch and a
coupe. Whatever floats your boat.

There’s just the one model coming Downunder, the C4 Shine, priced from $37,990 plus

It sits high enough to be an SUV and has, lower protective plastic cladding, and it’s
categorised as an SUV for statistical purposes.

But the rear hatch and steeply sloping rear roof line lend an athletic, coupe-look to the

The front with its slimline lights’ highlights “Citroën LED Vision” technology, with daytime
running lights, headlights with three elements and LED fog lights with static corner lighting.

The interior features a wide, minimalist dashboard, bookended by large air vents, with
easy-to-use controls that does away with unnecessary clutter.

It has a minimalist 5.5-inch digital instrument panel. You won’t find any cool navigation
graphics here. In fact, cycling through the small screen and its retro graphics produces
hardly any visual change at all.

A flip-up style, head-up information panel is standard. It’s visible through polarised
sunglasses. Excellent!

It does the job, but is a little large and intrusive.

Rear seat comfort was given plenty of attention during the design process, but legroom still
feels a little tight.

Advanced Comfort seats, designed for long distances, incorporate a high-density layer
covered by 15mm-thick textured surface foam, providing a padded effect.

Standard kit includes 18-inch alloys, keyless entry and start, dual climate air conditioning,
partial leather upholstery, leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated front seats, and a four-
way power driver’s seat with massaging.
There’s also automatic lights and wipers, automatic high-beam, dimming rear-view mirror,
LED headlights, daytime running lights and fog lights, static cornering lights, along with
front, rear and side parking sensors, electric parking brake, rear privacy glass and heated,
power-folding exterior mirrors.

Curiously, the physical volume control for audio is located on the furthest side from the
driver, whether it’s the right or left-hand drive model.

There’s one 12V power outlet in front, along with one USB Type-A socket for charging and
one USB Type-C socket for data. The second row has just the one USB Type-A socket for

Citroen C4 is covered by a five-year unlimited kilometre warranty, with service due every
12 months or 15,000km.

Infotainment comes in the form of a frameless, ultra-thin, borderless 10.0-inch touchscreen
together with six-speaker audio, built-in satellite navigation, voice recognition, Bluetooth
phone and audio streaming, DAB digital radio and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto — with
the support of high-level acoustic insulation.

Power comes from a perky 1.2-litre, three-cylinder, turbo-petrol engine that delivers 114kW
of power at 5500 revs and 240Nm of torque from 1750 revs.

Driving the front wheels is an eight-speed auto, with paddle shifters. The engine stop-start
that delivers excellent fuel consumption.

Safety is disappointingly rated at four stars, narrowly falling short in some areas.
It extends to six airbags, forward collision warning and autonomous emergency braking
with low light pedestrian and cyclist detection.

There’s also blind spot monitoring, active lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control
with stop and go, driver attention alert, colour head-up display and a reversing camera with
top-down 360-degree image.

The sloping roofline, although it looks terrific, makes backseat entry and exit more difficult
and reduces rear headroom.

The cabin features a hollow form dash and soft touch armrest trim, with high-gloss black
accents for the air vents, steering wheel, instrument panel, air conditioning fascia,
infotainment controls and centre console.

The centre console offers plenty of storage space with lots of other storage available
around the cabin.

The front seats are comfy, a good size and heated too. The driver’s seat features four-way
electric adjustment but manual fore and aft adjustment as well as a massage function. The
passengers’ seat has multi-way manual adjustment with electric lumbar adjustment.

The rear seat has a split/fold backrest. Its rear area has rear air vents and USB charging.

The doors feature a curious, angled strip of cloth trim as ornamentation.

Doubling as a rear-view camera, the screen offers poor vision when it comes to reversing
in low light at night.

Turbocharging the car basically brings performance up to the level of a 2.0-litre engine. It
also delivers maximum torque earlier in the rev range, giving it more thrust, especially
away from the line. Being a three-cylinder engine, it adds a thrummy feel and note to

Gear selection is accomplished via a fingertip type push-pull toggle, with separate buttons
for park and manual mode and another switch for drive modes. The toggle works okay, but
is virtually invisible at night and can be challenging as your fingers search for it, with
backlighting for only the park and manual buttons.

Gear change paddles are fun for more spirited driving.

The three-cylinder turbo delivers a surprising amount of punch for its size, zipping away
from the lights and developing a healthy rasp under hard acceleration.

The eight-speed auto is often jerky in execution and reminds us of the dead but not
forgotten robotised manual the company once offered.

The brakes are grabby too.

Much is made of the ride quality which is enhanced by pressurised hydraulic shock
absorbers with progressive damping front and rear.

The resulting ride is firmish and not altogether unpleasant, but nothing special otherwise.

Over the shoulder vision is compromised by the roof structure and rear pillars.
Rated at 6.1L/100km, we were getting 6.7 from the 50-litre tank after 720km of road

I worry for the future of Citroen in this country. Although it makes some fun and sometimes
exciting cars, for some reason no one wants to buy them.

I guess it can be compared to GM trying to sell Holdens to the French. They’d be
suspicious at least.

I’m not saying the C4 is a great car, but it offers plenty for the price. It’s fun, super stylish
and is an interesting alternative to the lookalike, drive-alike competition.

Looks: 8
Performance: 7
Safety: 7.5
Thirst: 8
Practicality: 8
Comfort: 7
Tech: 7.5
Value: 8
Overall: 7.6

Citroen C4 Shine: $37,990 (automatic)
Note: This price does not include government or dealer delivery charges. Contact your
local Citroen dealer for drive-away prices.

Citroen C4 Shine 1.2-litre turbo-petrol five-door wagon

Capacity: 1.2 litres
Configuration: Three cylinders in line
Maximum Power: 114 kW @ 5500 rpm
Maximum Torque: 240 Nm @ 1750 rpm
Fuel Type: Premium unleaded petrol
Combined Fuel Cycle (ADR 81/02): 5.2 L/100km
CO2 Emissions: 119 g/km

Eight-speed automatic, front wheel drive

Length: 4355 mm
Wheelbase: 2670 mm
Width: 1800 mm
Height: 1525 mm
Turning Circle: 10.9 metres
Kerb Mass: 1247 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 50 litres

Front: Ventilated disc
Rear: Solid disc

Five years / unlimited kilometres

About Chris Riley

Chris Riley has been a journalist for 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.
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