ARE you sitting comfortably? I am, and that’s because I am behind the wheel of the new Citroen C4.

The design and engineering people at Citroen have done their level best to provide a car that not only has French flair but rides impressively well over road surfaces of all descriptions.

You might want to steer clear of the C4 if you intend to throw it into B-road corners, because that’s not what it does well. That’s the pay-off for the superb suspension system.

You can have a C4 that’s 100 per cent electric or opt for a petrol or diesel version.

Whichever, this C4 is quite the looker, riding in an elevated way as it does on large diameter wheels and with an aerodynamic silhouette that gives it the appearance of an SUV with a coupe flourish.

At 4,360mm long, 1,800mm wide and 1,525mm high, it slots nicely into the compact hatchback sector. The ace up its sleeve is the class-leading “eye point” that ensures you get great visibility.

The reasons for the comfortable ride are due to what Citroen calls its advanced comfort programme, which includes suspension with Progressive Hydraulic Cushions and Advanced Comfort seats, coupled with 20 driving aids and six connectivity technologies.

Besides the electric e-C4 version, which has a range of 217 miles, there are petrol engines from 100 hp to 155 hp and diesel power from 110 hp to 130 hp to choose from.

I tested the PureTech 130 petrol unit, in Sense Plus specification, which will surely prove to be the most popular.There are three other outputs available – 99, 108 and 153bhp – but only one engine, a three-cylinder 1.2-litre turbo.

The 130 output seems just right. It pulls away with ease and settles nicely. Immediately noticeable is the lightness of the steering at low speeds and when making car park manoeuvres.

There’s a gentle thrum as you accelerate from start-up and, despite having only three cylinders, it makes quiet progress through the six gears.

Opt for the entry-level Sense trim and you get parking sensors. Choose Sense Plus and your C4 comes with a reversing camera and satellite navigation. The Sense spec is also the only one that does without a tray that slides out of the passenger end of the dashboard for tablet storage.

All C4s come with a 10-inch touchscreen that sits high on the dashboard and lots of connectivity and infotainment features. But my advice would be to go for the Sense Plus version.

The large 690mm diameter wheels and tyres particularly stand out thanks to the elaborate design on the 18-inch alloy.

Inside the C4, you will find a wide modern dashboard layout, plenty of storage compartments and relaxing seats.

If the predominant effect is to make you feel comfortable, then never far away from view is the very up-to-date feel of the cabin and the technology at hand.

The steering wheel incorporates the driver assistance controls on the left and the infotainment controls on the right. These are coupled with a frameless HD digital instrument panel and head-up display.

In the centre, at the top of the dashboard, the ultra-thin borderless 10-inch touchscreen is the nerve centre of the vehicle’s controls, while chrome dials take care of the dual-zone automatic climate control.

There are 31 colour combinations for the exterior and six different interior ambiences, so you should be able to find something to suit your preferences.

But key to the C4’s success will be the comfort provided by the “magic carpet ride” effect of Citroen’s suspension system and its armchair-like seating.

Citroen’s attention to detail extends to the rear, where passengers will find cup holders, map pockets and storage space.

The 380-litre boot has a low, flat loading sill and two-position floor that allows the boot to be divided into compartments and provides a flat floor when the rear seating is folded down.

Last but not least comes the comprehensive list of driving aids. There are 20 in all, and these include a collision risk alert and active safety brake to avoid collisions.

This is indeed an all-round excellent package.


Citroen C4 Sense Plus PureTech 130 S&S

Price: From £23,005

Engine: Three cylinder 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol, producing 129bhp

Transmission: Six-speed manual driving front wheels

Performance: 0 to 62mph in 8.9 seconds; top speed 130mph

Economy: 47.3 to 54.7mpg

CO2 emissions: 120 to 135g/km


Performance: ****

Economy: ****

Ride/Handling: *****

Space/Practicality: ****

Equipment: *****

Security/Safety: *****

Value For Money: ****