Our cars: Citroen Grand C4 Picasso - June

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  •  Our 2014 MPV of the Year 
  •  Citroen Grand C4 Picasso 1.6 e-HDi  
  •  Run by chief photographer, John Bradshaw
  • Citroen's service light was a false alarm

    Citroen's service light was a false alarm

  • Grand C4 Picasso's gearbox is notchy, but much more refined than in John's last long termer

    Grand C4 Picasso's gearbox is notchy, but much more refined than in John's last long termer

  • Three people and three bikes fitted into the Grand C4 Picasso - but only just

    Three people and three bikes fitted into the Grand C4 Picasso - but only just

  • Grand C4 Picasso's seats are a doddle to fold flat - when they're working

    Grand C4 Picasso's seats are a doddle to fold flat - when they're working

  • Citroen's fuel filler cap prevents costly misfuelling

    Citroen's fuel filler cap prevents costly misfuelling

  • Handy wheel to the left of the driver makes it easy to adjust our Picasso's seat and get comfortable

    Handy wheel to the left of the driver makes it easy to adjust our Picasso's seat and get comfortable

  • The 113bhp 1.6 diesel isn't just cheaper than the 148bhp 2.0 - it's also more refined

    The 113bhp 1.6 diesel isn't just cheaper than the 148bhp 2.0 - it's also more refined

  • C4 heads off on holiday in the hands of a colleague

    C4 heads off on holiday in the hands of a colleague

  • Picasso's vast boot - even in five-seat configuration - meant no need to drop the seats for a tip run

    Picasso's vast boot - even in five-seat configuration - meant no need to drop the seats for a tip run

  • Our chief photographer can't see the point in the Picasso's 'panoramic' windscreen

    Our chief photographer can't see the point in the Picasso's 'panoramic' windscreen

  • Sat-nav graphics are clear and crisp, but the blue 'route line' of the planned journey is far too thin

    Sat-nav graphics are clear and crisp, but the blue 'route line' of the planned journey is far too thin

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Citroen Grand C4 Picasso 1.6 e-HDi Exclusive

Read the full Citroen Grand C4 Picasso review

Week ending June 30
Mileage 12,226
Driven this week 164

Three people and three bikes. That doesn’t sound like much for an MPV to carry, especially when that MPV is the seven-seat Citroen Grand C4 Picasso. Things are rarely so simple in real life, though, so I wasn’t totally convinced that it’d all fit in easily.

You see, a group of friends and I did the London to Brighton charity bike ride recently, and I selected the big Citroen as a taxi to take three of us and our bikes home afterwards.

I left the Citroen in the outskirts of Brighton on the Saturday afternoon, then returned to it (feeling rather tired) having ridden to the south coast on the Sunday.

That tiredness turned to genuine concern after I’d folded down four of the seats, though: the space this created didn’t look large enough for three bikes, even with their front wheels off.

Thankfully, with a bit of creative packing, the bikes fitted safely inside – which was a huge relief to one of my friends, because it meant he didn’t have to ride 50-odd miles home!

So, if you’ve got a mixture of people and (bulky) kit to move, the Grand C4 Picasso really is grand.

By Barnaby Jones
Barnaby.Jones@whatcar.com

 

Read the full Citroen Grand C4 Picasso review

Week ending June 23
Mileage 12,062
Driven this week 126

Our Citroen C4 Grand Picasso has chalked up 12,000 miles, so it’s time for a service.

A phone call to the local Citroen dealership in Brentford revealed this will be a Level 1 service – not much surprise there – but what was surprising is the quoted price of £256 for what is, after all, the most basic service. Also, we will have to wait until the beginning of next month before they can carry out the work.

Added to the itinerary will be a check of the steering, which is making a strange squeaking noise as you turn the wheel at parking speeds. Other than that the Citroen is performing well with no other faults to report.

We will let you know how it all goes in due course.

By John Bradshaw
John.Bradshaw@whatcar.com


Week ending June 16
Mileage 11,936
Driven this week 131

We have discussed the little touches that can add up to more than the sum of their parts in these reports before, and the Citroen Grand C4 Picasso keeps shining with more small but pleasing examples of thoughtful design.

One such feature is the ‘capless’ fuelling system. This means that filling up at a fuel station no longer involves fiddling with a key to unlock the filler cap, or having to find a place to leave it that doesn’t involve placing it on the roof to be blown off by a gust of wind or, more embarrassingly, inadvertently leaving it there as you drive off.

With this system, you simply press the internal release button, insert the nozzle and fuel away. No drama, no fuss, and one less stress in your day.

By John Bradshaw
John.Bradshaw@whatcar.com


Week ending June 9

Mileage 11,805
Driven this week 201 miles

Our Grand C4 Picasso isn’t just big - it’s clever, too. It’s all very well having an MPV with seven seats, but if they don’t fold away (or pop up) easily, you’ll quickly get very frustrated.

However, our Picasso’s seating system couldn’t be easier to use. Each of the five seats in the second and third rows are individual, so they all fold and slide independently of one another. What’s more, there are several ways of manipulating the seats, so you can pick your own method.

The second row folds via handles on top of the seat backs, but they can also collapse by tugging a fabric loop at the bottom. Sliding can be accomplished with one of the folding mechanisms, or using a grab handle underneath the bases.

Unfortunately, we’ve only had a brief time to play with all of the configurations in full. One of the plastic levers to collapse the passenger side seat appears to have become detached from its spring below, rendering it temporarily useless. We’ll have to get the car looked at by a dealer - just as soon as we can find a gap in its busy schedule.

By John Bradshaw
John.Bradshaw@whatcar.com


Read the full Citroen Grand C4 Picasso review

Week ending June 2
Mileage 11,604
Driven this week 344 miles

I read a story in the paper last week about someone who’d put the wrong fuel in a Porsche Cayenne. It was a diesel model, so with half a tank of unleaded mixed in, it unsurprisingly went wrong pretty quickly.

The repair quote from Porsche was in the tens of thousands of pounds, which made me feel rather smug that our (much cheaper) Citroen Grand C4 Picasso has a misfuelling prevention device fitted as standard.

In plain English, that means that a little flap inside the filler neck remains closed if you try to slot a petrol pump nozzle inside. I doubt I’ll ever try to put the wrong fuel in the Citroen, but it’s nice to know that there’s a feature there ready to stop you making a costly error.

By John Bradshaw
John.Bradshaw@whatcar.com

Our cars: Citroen Grand C4 Picasso - May

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