Citroën e-C4 long-term test: report 7

Citroën has reinvented its family hatchback, turning it into a coupé SUV and introducing an electric version for the first time. We're finding out what it's like to live with...

Citroen e-C4 long term

The car Citroën e-C4 50kWh Shine Plus Run by Allan Muir, managing editor

Why we’re running it To find out whether Citroën has finally got the recipe right with its new family hatchback cum coupé SUV, and to see how well the battery-powered version stacks up against its small electric car rivals 

Needs to Deliver on Citroën's promise of exceptional comfort while being easy to live with and having a long enough range to be viable as an only car

Mileage 3630 List price £34,995 (not including £2500 gov’t grant) Target Price £33,799 Price as tested £35,540 Test range 160 miles Official range: 217 miles

2 October 2021 – Going the extra style 

In blurring the lines between a conventional family hatchback, an SUV and a coupé with the design of the latest C4 range, Citroën has succeeded in coming up with something that really stands out from the crowd – to my eyes, at least. 

Efforts to make the car look rakish include a relatively low, curving roofline, a steeply raked tailgate that’s bisected horizontally by a spoiler, and a blacked-out treatment for a good portion of its hind quarters. I think my e-C4 looks really eye-catching, especially from the rear. 

Citroen e-C4 long term

However, as is often the case in cars like this, there’s a price to be paid in terms of visibility. 

To be fair, the spoiler only hinders the view in the rear-view mirror rather than obliterating it; I can still see enough to get by. And there’s a reversing camera (with an overhead view) to help when manoeuvring. 

A bigger issue – when it’s raining, at least – is that there’s no rear wiper. The idea is that the glass will clear itself when you’re moving at speed, and that does happen – eventually. However, there have been plenty of times when I haven’t been able to see a thing out the back. Being able to give a rear wiper a flick to immediately provide a clear view would have been handy.

Despite the compromises that come with the rakish roofline, I’m finding the e-C4 more and more agreeable to live with as time goes by. Comfort continues to be its biggest strength, but I’ve also realised that there’s a high level of convenience, simplicity and usability about the e-C4 that I find immensely appealing.

Citroen e-C4 long term

The interior layout is one example, with exceptionally easy-to-use physical controls for the likes of the air-con. Another is the keyless entry system, with its automatic door locking and unlocking functionality; it seems to be particularly slick.

I love being able to walk up to the car (with the key fob in my pocket) and simply pull the door handle to get in, and when I get out, I feel surprisingly comfortable about shutting the door and walking away without a backward glance, because the car gives a hearty double beep to confirm that the doors are indeed locked. None of this is revolutionary, but for some reason I find the e-C4 more trustworthy in this regard than most cars. It just works. 

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