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Citroen's Latest C1 Shows Other City Cars How It's Done

By raccars Published

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The C1 has been with us for nearly a decade and sold almost 620,000 models globally. It's also petrol powered with no diesel, hybrid or hydrogen options. Despite all this, its latest incarnation is one of the freshest, most desirable and most frugal city cars on the market.

The new C1 hits the UK next month and is funkier than ever. However its main selling point remains its affordability. It is one of the most economical city cars both to buy and run in the current market, yet boasting a quality that belies its bargain price.

In standard city car format, the C1 is powered by a three cylinder 1.0 litre petrol engine. This particular engine campaigns on its super light weight, which helps to keep the C1's kerb weight around the 800kg mark, thus keeping fuel costs right down and performance up. In fact the welterweight C1 zips around the urban jungle far more perkily than its official 0-60mph time of 12.3 seconds would suggest. It's very willing too, responding happily even from low revs. The ride is maybe a little stiffer than the previous C1's, with shock absorber adjustments making lumps and bumps more noticeable in return for a decrease in body roll.

The Citroen C1's interior has largely been left in peace, retaining the maximum use of a very compact space and cute touches such as the translucent ventilation panel's back lighting and the rear tailgate's window glass.

The C1 boasts an £8,000-£11,000 price tag. One major selling point is that the five-door version commands only a £350 premium over the three-door, making it one of the most affordable five-door models in its market segment. For that price you'll get as standard a 12v socket, rear windscreen washer/wiper, electrically assisted power steering with automatic speed correlation and a decent CD stereo with auxiliary input. You can opt for a higher specification model for a smarter stereo system and Bluetooth connectivity. The standard gearbox is a five speed manual unit, but for an extra £500 you can go for the EGS semi-automatic option.

While the C1 was always frugal, the latest updates have made it spectacularly efficient. It can boast CO2 emissions of 99g/km and 65.7mpg. Along with its compact, parking friendly form, smart appearance and lively performance, this might make the C1 the best city car out there, or certainly a contender.

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