The Berlingo has one 1.2-litre petrol and three 1.5-litre BlueHDi diesels.
The range starts with a 74bhp 1.5-litre diesel unit, but because the Berlingo is a sizeable vehicle, it has a 0-62mph time of 16.5sec and isn’t ideal for those who carry more than one passenger. The 99bhp version of that same engine would be much more suitable.
We’ve driven the top-of-the-range 128bhp variant and it’s a smooth and remarkably refined engine. It’ll suit those who regularly drive with family and luggage, because you get plenty of low-down grunt. The eight-speed automatic gearbox has some slight hesitation when pulling away from the traffic lights or when merging onto a roundabout, but once you get going it shifts quickly. If you want to take control, you can always override the system by using the paddles behind the steering wheel.
There is one petrol option only: a 108bhp 1.2-litre engine. Mated to a six-speed manual gearbox, it’s very flexible, pulls well from low revs and has a particularly strong mid-range torque – if you’re prepared to rev it out a bit. A 128bhp version of this unit will arrive at a later date with an eight-speed auto ’box but, for now, the manual ’box shifts fairly smoothly, although it isn’t quite as slick as the gearboxes you’ll find in a Volkswagen Touran or Ford S-Max.
The steering is accurate and light enough at low speeds to make parking easy. If you have the optional Park Assist Plus Pack, you get a reversing camera that incorporates an overhead view function to help you further.
The ride is pleasantly relaxed over undulations at speed and road noise is well suppressed considering the vast interior. There’s a little wind noise from around the big door mirrors and large windscreen area, but this is true of many of the Berlingo’s rivals.
Passengers will find plenty of body roll, but this is mostly because the side bolsters in their seats aren’t supportive enough, so it feels like the car leans over in bends a lot more than it actually does. Citroën says that bigger bolsters would stop the seats from lying (almost) flat when folded down. Happily, the driver’s seat offers more support.