CitroΓ«n C5 (01 - 08) Owner reviews

No longer on sale

i V6 Exclusive SE 5dr Auto

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs3/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG34 mpg

I must be one of a few a very very few people Own a Citroen C5 3.0 V6 some say i must be mental i probably am however its proved to be worth its weight in gold. I bought the car in 2006 with 60k on the clockfrom a main dealer in London the car was cheap and and it suited the nature of what i needed a car for. Granted its not the best looking car in the world as its the MK1 version but its still got that something that people think its expensive. Now having covered over 140k yeah its done a few miles in two years ok alot of miles and i don't want to know what the fuel bills totals up too. but it has given me two years and a bit of total troble free driving. its never let me done does not want or need anything either. Tyres last for ages the brake pads last a good 40-45k which is great for an auto and a car that size. and only needs a service every 20k. My only adviseis that ifyou do own one or any other car infact if your back box does give up the ghost then make sure you price a long life one as well as a standard one. A stanmdard one for my car would have cost me about Β£940 thats alot but the longlife one only cost me Β£230 and i watched it being made too. All in all its a cracking car its worth nothing in this current market granted but its worth alot more to me.

Daniel James, Neath and Port Talbot, February 8th 2009

i 16V Exclusive 5dr Auto

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

Just a follow-up to Daniel James' letter, I too am getting excellent Tyre life from my Michelins (over 70,000 kms and still good tread left). Still looking for information on how to fix my Automatic Gearbox. A small garage said I should get the "Valve Bodies" replaced. Is there an expert in the U.K. who could advise me on this? I really love this car but unfortunately the Citroen Agents don't seem to care about After Sales Service in South Africa (and perhaps all over the world). My wife likes the look of the new Citroen DS coming out this year but we would be reluctant to buy one with the attitude of the Citroen Agents in the Johannesburg area. She will stick to a Mini Cooper or the Honda Jazz. Honda's reliability and service is superb!

Ivan Wheatley, February 6th 2009

i 16V SX 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I have owned this car from new, a 51 plate, and have done 49,000 miles in it. First of all, I want to say how surprised I am at the huge difference between what a reader paid for his 51 (used) when it had done 75,000 miles, and what I am being offered for mine as a trade-in (buying a Mondeo as I don't like the new style C5) - he paid Β£5000, I am offered Β£1000 for mine! Exterior is perfect, full SH, one careful lady owner etc... dealer said 'Great outside, but inside has so much dog hair.' Surely a valeting would take care of that? Anyway - C5 has been great, not one breakdown, only 2 faults over the 7 years, quiet, comfortable and stylish compared to the Mondeo! Very surprised to read of all those faults - mine was an excellent car.

Melanie Eskenazi, Surrey, November 18th 2008

HDi 110 LX 5dr

  • Overall verdict1/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs1/5
  • Quality1/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I bought this car (a 51 plate) on 75,000 miles (it has now done 140,000). Although cheap to buy at £5000, it has cost me a fortune in replacement parts. The first complaint was squeaking brakes. The Citroën dealer told me that 'Citroën doesn't make decent brake pads, we'll use substitute pads'. The result still the same. Next, the radio failed. The same dealer said 'It's a faulty aerial'. It wasn't - it was the radio unit itself (the mechanic couldn't be bothered to check his work). Then the big 'uns. The hydraulic pump failed (C5s can't be driven without it) - that cost 900 Euros. Next, the head gasket - that cost £1500. Nine months later, the hydraulic pump failed again (again in France, where the dealer just gave me the usual Gallic shrug). In 40 years of owning cars, I can honestly say that this is the very worst car I have ever had - with the possible exception of my first (student) vehicle, a clapped-out Austin Cambridge that I bought for £10 in 1969. To cap it all, it also has one of the most uncomfortable driver's seats that I have ever encountered - cheap foam rubber that, on 600-mile journeys to and from France, has absolutely killed me. Were I to be offered a free Citroën tomorrow, I think I would actually turn it down. Having had a couple of Renaults over the years, and now this pièce de merde, I can unequivocally say that I shall never, ever, ever again buy a French car!

Chris Larkin, June 23rd 2008

HDi 110 SX 5dr

  • Overall verdict3/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs2/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I have owned my C5 from new since 2002 and had immediately encountered automatic gearbox problems. After much to and fro trips to the dealer I finally convinced them to change my gearbox under warranty. This was in Dec 2003. Six months later I was back with the same problem but they insisted that nothing had marked on their Citroen's diagnostic computer. The problem persisted and several other gearbox problems emerged. After several visits to the workshop where no faults emerged (although it marked on the car's onboard computer)the gearbox is now beyond repair and outside warranty. Citroen headquarters seem to want nothing to do with what I claim to be manufacturer's defective gearboxes. Now I need to fork out GBP3000 for a replacement gearbox but with the very poor resale value of this car it's not worth fixing and furthermore might need to change again in 2 years time. According to my local dealer, Citroen's recommendation for ATF change is 20k-25k miles. Could this be the cause of gearbox failure?Has anyone encounter such ongoing automatic gearbox problems with these cars? Overall, I am quite happy with the car but would not consider buying another upmarket Citroen due to company's attitude in not tackling consistant and recurring problems which have plagued this vehicle thus resulting in the poor resale value of these cars. Unfortunately I am told that the replacement gearbox for my C5 is the same model as the old one and so I should expect the same old problems.

Jeff Shaw, June 18th 2008

HDi 110 VTR 5dr

  • Overall verdict2/5
  • What it's like to drive2/5
  • Running costs2/5
  • Quality2/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

Nice and comfortable - although little niggles run as long as your arm..... 1. Auto Gearbox is awful. Periodically signals "Auto Gearbox Failure" when you got about 1 mile. Switch off and on again and fine. Happens most mornings if you put some pressure on it. 2. Window Washer Pump - been replaced twice now 3. Lights - Life of their own! Bright, dim, bright again 4. Suspension - any life of their own! Up, Down, Up, Down - normally when sitting at traffic lights! 5. Climate Control (or lack of!) - either blows cold or not at all! Overall comfortable, and you get used to the strange behavior after a while. Good on motorways

Stuart Auger, Worcestershire, June 2nd 2008

HDi 110 LX 5dr

  • Overall verdict2/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs2/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I was initially pleased with this car. I had it from 6 months old and with 9K on the clock it seemed fine. Then the hydraulics become home to a potergeist who would mysteriously make the car go up and down when it was switched off which led to battery problems. Then the speedo stopped working and I was toild it was a problem 'with the computer'. Kerchink - Β£400 please. Then the key failed to plip and open the doors - kerchink - Β£30 to 'reprogramme it' (took less than 5 minutes). Now it has started losing water on every trip and I have been told that there was a poor set of head gaskets on the earlier models. Having shelled out Β£600 on a new water pump and timing chain I have just been quoted a further Β£900 to do the head gasket. Suffice to say it will be part exchanged shortly. There is also an annoying noise form the ventilation fan when it is on the setting that I use most often. So I now have to get blasted by air, or swelter, or put up with the noise. Personally, I would never buy a Citroen again just based on the problems I have had with this heap!

Graeme Kay, Devon, April 13th 2008

HDi 110 LX 5dr

  • Overall verdict3/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality2/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

Bought 110hdi lx @six months old nov.02 from supermarket for Β£8900. Niggling electrical problem fixed at third attempt @main dealer under warranty. Decided not to start out of the blue? Flat battery? Never occurred again since. Now at 100,000 never needed to top up oil/water, still on orginal clutch, amazing ride and comfort spoilt by couple of interior rattles and poor quality interior fittings i.e. Carpet etc. Though corners without 'roll' not especially engaging to drive but hard to beat for long distance trips.huge boot at expense of rear leg room. Now worth buttons so will run till it drops and then look at new model at 1 yr old which looks interesting?

IAN MCNEILLIE, CONWY, March 15th 2008

i 16V LX 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs3/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I have owned a C5 1.8 from new since May 2004. On the whole I have it found it to be reliable and very comfortable. The cabin and boot are absolutely massive and the equipment as standard is excellent. The car has now done 40,000 miles and the only problem I have had was the brake calipers needed replacing just 3 months out of warranty and this cost me about Β£450. I was told that Ciroen would probably help with the cost as this was unusual but, suprise suprise, they didn't so I had to fork out the whole lot. The car is very long and wide so some car park bays are a bit snug and the pneumatic suspension sometimes moves itself when unlocking on a morning but then puts itself back again (it may be designed to do this, but it's a bit wierd). I find that rain sensing wipers and automatic headlights are pointless because I can normally tell when it is raining and dark! The car initially cost me Β£10,000 against a list price of Β£16,000 so consequently any trade in value will be very small but I have had my value when I bought the car. The car is very comfortable on long journeys and is also OK around town. Overall, yes I would buy another one if it was just for me but my wife finds it ludicrously too big to drive, although she does like the comfort and space when a passenger.

Keith Nicholson, February 24th 2008

i 16V LX 5dr

  • Overall verdict2/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs3/5
  • Quality2/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I owned this car for 3 weeks and that was torture! I would never own a Citroen ever again. I guess some of the newer ones can only be better in build but my Y reg was a disaster! The ride was okay and smooth and corners weren't too bad although there were a few annoying problems. The brakes made a hideous noise when braking at slow speeds even after spending Β£300 on pads and discs for the car. Check this as it is a known C5 fault with very few people knowing the resolution! Another problem was the occassional noises coming from the rear of the car (i guess it was the hydraulic suspension). I think it was on its way out. The seats were comfy but perhaps a bit too soft. The biggest gripe is what i paid for the car and the amount i lost trading it in three weeks later, after spending money on it. Never again would i buy a C5 or Citroen and i advise you to buy a competitors version. The Mondeo is better for the money (i have owned one) although if you can afford buy German (I have an Audi A4 now and it rocks over every inch of the C5)

chris williams, January 18th 2008

i 16V LX 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I purchased a Citroen C5 on 1 March 2004 and although I now only do a small annual mileage, the car has been excellent with low running costs (servicing every 20,000 miles or every two years). I am therefore amazed at the low trade in values - with the only apparent drawback being criticism of the suspension which MAY result in costly repairs in the future. When I compare my C5 with other cars of a similar age I honestly believe that it is grossly undervalued. I would advise second hand buyers to seriosly consider purchasing a C5 as bargains will be available.

JAMES CURRY, TYNE & WEAR, November 26th 2007

HDi Exclusive 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

As a retired police driver and now working part time as a new car deliver driver around the country ive had the luxury of driving most cars and models.I never considered buying a Citroen.Citroen is a totally different vehicle to the ones i remenber in the past as i found out when i drove the C5.The C5 2.2 diesel with its great suspension is a superb car to drive.i can only confirm what bob smith reported,the vehicle remains flat on cornering.creates no roll of course any car will roll if your in the wrong gear.I get very positive feed back from customers who drive the C5 some of the vehicles have well in excess of 100000miles when they are returned.I was so impressed with the C5 i purchased a one year old 2.2 diesel exclusive with 14000 miles on the clock for 12000 pounds.The car has done another 20000 miles since with no problems.The car has its down side with regard to depreciation,i dont no why because the cars are very well built with some of the best diesel engines in the world.The tip is to look round for a good second car with low mileage about 18 months old and then you will have found yourself a great car at a great price,

basil kilvington, essex, November 11th 2007

i 16V SX 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I bought a C5 2.0 in January 2002. After more than 5 years of use, I would like to highlight the following faults: Sticky plastic parts – The plasticisers leached out early, causing parts such as the dash, glove cover and door handles to feel sticky. Hydraulic suspension oil leak – I have had the pipe repaired not less than 3 times so far. The cushion foam in the driver seat cracked after 1 year of use. The fuel tank expanded and burst the holding rim cover. The plastic components of the pump also cracked. These resulted in a potentially dangerous fuel leak if the tank were more than half-filled. The replacement holding rim cover could not be screwed onto the tank due to an enlarged and distorted rim. A new fuel tank and pump had to be fitted. The plastic dust cover of the auto gearbox cracked and broke on the 3rd year of use. The gearbox assembly came in a complete module and had to be replaced as a whole unit. Reverse gear spoilt – the plastic component in the gear box broke and so immobilised the car. There was an ABS fault – it happened only last week and has to be replaced. The left armrest in the passenger seat is out of position and cannot fold down properly. The left foglamp and sidelamp blew quite frequently lately. I changed 3 bulbs within 6 months. The left rear view mirror points upwards instead of downwards when reverse gear is engaged, rendering it useless. Conclusion: it is not a cheap car to own.

Chin Hwa Ng, Johor, November 6th 2007

HDi 16V VTX+ 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I drove a MK1 C5 diesel for 4 years. I was seduced by the ride quality and despite some electrical gremlins and doors which wouldn't open, it never let me down. My next car was a Peugeot 407SW, a much better car to look at but it is a fact that the honeymoon with a new car doesn't last long and the fiddly ride quality and feeling nearly every bump in the road soon made me regret my decision.How Peugeot can advertise "The drive of your life" is laughable.Read thw write-ups in What car about the 308 !! My 407sw only lasted 18 months before being written off in the floods so I was able to choose a new car. I test drove the new Mondeo the allegedly new best family car.It is relly good to drive with steering more precise than the C5 but despite its virtually flawless ride quality it can't touch the new C5 for ride quality. Everyone wants something different from a car but if you want a serene ride with a hushed environment there is nothing (except a Rover 75) to rival a C5. I can't wait for the MK3.

Geoff Coulson, October 3rd 2007

HDi 16V VTR 5dr

  • Overall verdict5/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality5/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I have now had my car for a year from new and after 17,000 miles have had no problems at all. It rides brilliantly and corners dead flat - whoever said in the reviews that it corners with a lot of body roll probably did not drive one! Everybody says how good it is on the motorway, but I really appreciate mine on bumpy cross country lanes when the suspension soaks up the lumps perfectly. Economy is suberb - I always achieve 60+ mpg on my 60 mile round trip commute to work on a varied town/dual carriageway/cross country route, and only fill it up every 750 miles or so. You really have to thrash it to get as low as 55mpg! Driving it is very easy - the 1.6 diesel is very keen to propel the car and offers flexibility and power when you want it, even when fully loaded. The inside is vary spacious and comfortable, and the boot will swallow everything you want to throw in it. It has all the toys you want (including a great sound system), and the speed limiter is a plus point for a relaxed enjoyable ride if you want to cruise in comfort. The only down side is that the front end is not very attractive, but the rest of the car is styled with a flair which puts the competition in the shade. Deprecaition is a problem for this car, but you can get such good deals from the showrooms that in the long term you will not loose any more than with other cars in the class. I had a new shape Mondeo before this (again from new) and would choose the Citroen every time.

Bob Smith, September 15th 2007

HPi Exclusive 5dr

  • Overall verdict2/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs2/5
  • Quality1/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

When my C5 works, it is one of the nicest, most comfortable cars I've ever driven. However, it doesn't work for most of the time! 2 years ago, I had a lot of trouble with one of the sensors, and the car was in the garage for 5 months (yes, five months). During this time, I had several increasingly heated conversations with Citroen UK, and I'm afraid to say I found them to be extremely lazy, unhelpful and at times downright deceptive. They are the reason that when I eventually scrap my C5(unfortunately resale is not an option because they depreciate tremendously) I shall not be getting another Citroen.

julian hoad, Surrey, June 25th 2007

i 16V SX 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive5/5
  • Running costs4/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I have this car for 3 months but made already nearly 10000 miles. The drive is fantastic when cruising on motorway. In the urban areas is slightly less exciting but very comfortable. I didn't have problems with this car, even when it has more than 100000 miles on the clock now. Plastics inside could be better quality, but it is pretty good anyway. I will think about newer one if it will continue to drive for me like this.

Lukasz Wysocki, May 15th 2007

HDi 110 SX 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

A bargain diesel barge to lug all the family around in. My wife can knock all the corners off it and i dont care. Cheap to run and a nice car to drive on the motorway.

jonathan oliver, May 11th 2007

HDi 16V VTX+ 5dr

  • Overall verdict2/5
  • What it's like to drive3/5
  • Running costs2/5
  • Quality3/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

I own the 1.6 HDi 110bhp VTX+ model. im not particarly impressed with fuel consumption at 33.7 around town. I'm told by someone in the know that the trip computer was designed to massively over read to fool people into thinking its doing better than it actually is.... The ability to raise the ride height is also a bonus when the sat sat nav directed me through a ford which could have been avoided. The update on the satnav is really terrible taking seemingly ages to actually get rid of the "I'm thinking about your route" hourglass which appears when you try to plan a route. the trim quality and build quality is abysmal, as mine has only 7000 miles on it and creaks like an old rocking chair. The courtesy light for the doors also doesnt go out unless you slam it REALLY HARD (fantastic as im a shift worker and i think my neighbours are using me slamming the door instead of their alarm clocks now!!!) and the fake leather/plastic/rubber/other gearlever gaiter keeps coming off whenever you change gear. When I realised what a shed it was I tried to get my old car back from Pilling Citroen, but their take on it was "Tough luck, it's ours now, so sue us! Please be aware this is not a whinge, but merely an accurate reflection of how I feel about the car. I'm so dissillusioned with the car that I am about to Trade it in for a Renault Megame Sport tourer 106 bhp.

mark darke, surrey, May 5th 2007

HDi 110 LX 5dr

  • Overall verdict4/5
  • What it's like to drive4/5
  • Running costs5/5
  • Quality4/5
  • Average MPG0 mpg

This may help people who are having problems with their cars coming to a stop for no apparent reason. I had this same problem with my Peugeot 306 XLD I had for six years - it kept stopping after about 300yds. This started at 49,000 miles. I was lucky that my friend's brother-in-law had a garage and only worked on Citroen and Peugeot engines. The problem is in the fuel tank - a worm-like substance builds up in the tank filter - it gets drawn up into the fuel line and stops the engine by starving the engine of fuel. After about five minutes, the car will start again when the slug drops back down into the filter. I should point out that the slug is inside the filter - how and why this happens I do not know. Access can be gained to the fuel tank by lifting the back seat and removing the large black rubber bung - this will give access to the tank filter, which is a large screw cap. He pointed out to me this was common to Citroen and Peugot diesels. I hope this is helpful to the people reading this site as it may save them a lot of time and money.

richard parker, durham, February 20th 2007

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