The Citroen C5 X is a large French station wagon that could be called a long
hatchback rather than a wagon, or even a lowish SUV, or perhaps a five-door coupe.

Your choice…

It competes in the Australian market with the Audi A4 Allroad, Peugeot 508
Sportswagon and Volkswagen Arteon. Note that quite a few major components are
shared with the Peugeot, some of these have been revised to give it a more Citroen
feel and look.

It’s French, so the styling of the Citroen C5 X is simply stunning. It’s very unusual for
me give a 10 out of 10 for any vehicle – but the C5 X gets a big tick. Everyone who
we showed it to during our test week with the big Cit simply walked around it looking
at it from every angle and could not fault it in any way.

The front has the traditional double chevron that is instantly recognisable. The top
lines of the chevron extend all the way around the lower edges of the bonnet. Those
of the lower chevron dip down into the lighting area.

The bonnet is quite high to give it the SUV look. The wheel arches front and rear
have lips to add to the SUV feel. The side rear windows have interesting painted-out
lines that add to the overall sleek look.

The Citroen C5 X is very upmarket, as it should be operating in this class. It has
leather trim, powered front-seat adjustment and heated front seats.

Comfort is good, again in a very French manner as they do enjoy being able to relax.
The front seats are wide enough to hold a rump of decent width and the seat sides
offer good support during spirited driving on winding roads.

You can fold the rear seatbacks down to provide up to 1640 litres of luggage space.
Boot-mounted releases make it simple to drop the seats.

The seatback doesn’t go perfectly flat but it’s close to it, meaning we would be able
to transport our dog, Bailey, something that can’t be done in many other cars. (We
own a Volvo XC40 and the ever-practical Swedes have given it a seatback that folds
perfectly flat.)

Control of the system is done by a 12-inch infotainment display that’s easy to use.

Multiple speakers mean the quality of music is excellent.

Yet again we complain that picking up DAB+ can be patchy when the signal is
interrupted in areas where the road cuts through hills or even by thickly treed areas.
Bringing your own music if you’re likely to be doing a long trip is smart.

There are two USB-C ports in the front and two in the rear.

Power comes from 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine with 133kW of power at
5500rpm and 250Nm of torque from 1650rpm.

The transmission is a conventional eight-speed automatic that drives, of course, the
front wheels. That’s “Traction Avant” in French, and while Citroen didn’t invent front-
wheel drive it has such a long history of using it that many think it was Andre Citroen
who did so.

To make it easier to see and be seen the C5 X has LED headlights, taillights and
daytime running lights.

As I write this there was no ANCAP rating or even a Euro NCAP score for the C5 X.
There’s been some speculation that it may not receive a five-star rating due to ever
tightening needs for safety.

The steering wheel has four-way adjustment and everyone who drove the Citroen
found it had a good range of adjustments and so could be set to suit each of them.

Headroom is rather tight if you like to have the driver’s seat high, as I do. That’s
partly due to the sunroof stealing some space. This is something to check if you’re
considering buying the C5 X.

What Citroen calls “Suspension with Progressive Hydraulic Cushioning” works
exceptionally well in the comfort it provides. It uses sensors to read the road surface
at the front of the car and a computer adjusts the hydraulic dampers to match what’s
about to happen in the next few milliseconds .

It corners nicely and we enjoyed the way it turned in and promptly followed our
instructions by way of the steering wheel and the accelerator pedal. It’s not sports
machine, nor is it intended to be, but it holds the road well under all conditions, even
if the road has seen better days and is bumpy.

We didn’t get the chance to go out to dirt roads during our time in the car. I’ve driven
Citroens, though obviously not a C5 X, in France on numerous business trips as well
as on enjoyable holidays. There the Citroens coped effortlessly on poor roads.

The big C5 X is just as good, probably better, than anything else the company has
built. And that’s saying a lot.

The head up display is relatively easy to use, even with polarising sunglasses. The
display is not perfectly clear unless I turn my head slightly to one side or the other.

But it’s certainly much better than in almost every other vehicle I’ve test driven where
nothing is visible without me turning my head.

Looks: 10/10
Performance: 8/10
Safety: 8/10
Thirst: 7/10
Practicality: 7/10
Comfort: 9/10
Tech: 8/10
Value: 8/10


Citroen C5 X Shine 1.6-litre turbo-petrol five-door wagon: $57,670
Note: This price does not include government or dealer delivery charges. Contact
your local Citroen dealer for drive-away prices.


Capacity: 1.598 litres
Configuration: Four cylinders in line
Maximum Power: 133 kW @ 5500 rpm
Maximum Torque: 250 Nm @ 1650 rpm
Fuel Type: Premium unleaded petrol
Combined Fuel Cycle (ADR 81/02): 6.0 L/100km
CO2 Emissions: 137 g/km

DRIVELINE: Eight-speed automatic

Length: 4805 mm
Wheelbase: 2785 mm
Width: 1865 mm
Height: 1490 mm
Turning Circle: Not supplied
Kerb Mass: 1467 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 52 litres

Front: Ventilated disc
Rear: Solid disc

Five years / unlimited kilometres

About Ewan Kennedy

Ewan Kennedy, a long-time car enthusiast, was Technical Research Librarian with the NRMA from 1970 until 1985. He worked part-time as a freelance motoring journalist from 1977 until 1985, when he took a full-time position as Technical Editor with Modern Motor magazine. Late in 1987 he left to set up a full-time business as a freelance motoring journalist. Ewan is an associate member of the Society of Automotive Engineers - International. An economy driving expert, he set the Guinness World Record for the greatest distance travelled in a standard road vehicle on a single fuel fill. He lists his hobbies as stage acting, travelling, boating and reading.
Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *