2013 Citroen C3 Picasso review

  • Updated Citroen C3 Picasso MPV
  • New 1.6-litre diesel engine
  • On sale January, priced from £12,995
Read the full Citroen C3 Picasso review
Read the full Citroen C3 Picasso review
The Citroen C3 Picasso has always been one of our favourite compact MPVs, and the French brand aims to keep it that way with a raft of updates for 2013.

Most obvious of these is a new look. Styling tweaks include a revised front bumper and Citroen's latest corporate badging, plus LED daytime running lights.

A new 113bhp 1.6 diesel engine joins the line-up, although many diesel buyers will still opt for the cheaper and more fuel-efficient 89bhp 1.6 engine.

Petrol buyers have the choice of two engines – a 94bhp 1.4 and a 118bhp 1.6.

What’s the 2013 Citroen C3 Picasso like inside?
The C3 Picasso is only slightly longer than your average supermini, but it's a lot more spacious inside thanks to that high roofline, which provides plenty of headroom for all occupants.

The C3 Picasso is only slightly longer than your average supermini, but it's a lot more spacious

The rear bench seat is split 60/40, and the two pieces slide back and forth individually. However, even with the seats as far back as they’ll go, the Citroen doesn’t have as much rear legroom as a Ford B-Max.

The Picasso does have a bigger boot than its Ford rival, though. Boot capacity ranges from a generous 385 litres to an estate car-rivalling 500-litres (depending on the position of the rear seats), and the rear bench can be folded down flat when you need even more space.

There’s also an adjustable boot floor which – in its highest settings with the rear seats folded down – gives a totally flat load bay with no boot lip

Forward vision is exceptional thanks to a wrap-around windscreen with skinny pillars, and drivers of all shapes and sizes should be able to make themselves comfortable, thanks to a good range of adjustment for the seat and steering wheel.

The dashboard is also nicely textured, even though the plastics themselves are hard.

Every C3 Picasso comes with remote central locking, front electric windows and a CD player, but you have to upgrade to the mid-level VTR+ trim to get rear electric windows, alloys and air-conditioning.

Range-topping Exclusive cars come with luxuries such as climate control, electric folding door mirrors and rear parking sensors.

Read the full Citroen C3 Picasso review
2013 C3 Picasso gets fresh styling and Citroen's latest corporate badging

What’s the 2013 Citroen C3 Picasso like to drive?
We tried the new range-topping 113bhp 1.6 diesel. You need to keep the revs between 1800rpm and 3500rpm to get the best from it, but do so and it provides a good turn of pace.

Better still, the new diesel engine returned an impressive real-world economy of 57.7mpg in our True MPG tests – just 1.1mpg short of its official figure.

The engine is fairly noisy, though, and the long-throw six-speed gearbox is decidedly vague.

The Citroen wafts along serenely thanks to its supple suspension. The soft set-up does cause the body to bob up and down on undulating roads, but the Picasso doesn’t get too out of shape through tight twists and turns.

The steering is usefully light around town, and weights up reassuringly enough at speed – even though it doesn’t offer the same sense of connection you get from a Ford B-Max.

Read the full Citroen C3 Picasso review
The 2013 C3 Picasso gets a new 113bhp diesel engine

Should I buy one?
All things considered, the C3 Picasso is still our favourite small MPV.

It doesn’t do anything quite as clever as the new Ford B-Max, but it’s ultimately more spacious and quite a bit cheaper to buy.

That said, we’d probably steer clear of the new 1.6 diesel engine. It’s available only in range-topping Exclusive trim, which means it rather pricey at £17,475.
For £3000 less you can have a 1.4 petrol model in mid-spec VTR+ trim.

Read the full Citroen C3 Picasso review >>



Rivals
Ford B-Max
Vauxhall Meriva

What Car? says…


By Will Nightingale

 
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