After driving some very powerful cars in recent weeks, it was nice to sit into what I would call a fairly regular car last week, the Citroen eC4 X.
The first item that caught my eye when I sat in was the heads-up display on the windscreen telling me what my speed was and the speed limit on the road I was driving on. I like this service, which is becoming popular with most manufacturers. It’s always a good way to start, then there is not point blaming anybody or anything else if you break the speed limit.
My test car was the e-C4 X-Flair and it came in a very attractive Elixir Red colour. Red is a great colour, especially when it comes to trading in.
Citroen were never among the top selling brands in Ireland when they only produced petrol and diesel cars. But I have a feeling their sales figure should improve this year with the arrival of the fully electric e-C4.
For a few decades, Citroen were part of the Gowan Group and based in Bluebell in Dublin. They broke away for a few years and were imported by the IM group, but now Citroen are back in the Gowan family, in their new headquarters in Citywest.
Citroen already have an eC4 without the X, so what does the X mean? Well the manufacturer says this is a fastback that blends SUV ride-height and rugged looks with the functionality of a saloon. But really you would need to be wearing your Citroen Anorak to notice the difference.
The first two questions everybody asks me when I show them an electric car are, range and price. The range is approximately 350km on a calm, dry day and prices start around €41k.
As with most other brands the prices will increase as the spec rises, but the range will rarely increase, unless you drive very cagey or in Eco mode. After a decent charge I checked the range. In regular mode I had 300km, if I opted for Sport mode, the range dropped to 284, but if I selected Eco mode the range rose to 314km.
Naturally there is much more ‘pep in your step’ when you opt for Sport mode, while it feels like somebody is holding you back when you opt for Eco mode, but Eco is definitely the best if it’s range you want.
It’s a really comfortable car to travel in and so easy to handle. When Citroen introduced their new Cactus a few years back they had airbumps on the doors to prevent scratches from other car users in tightly parked spaces. There is now one indentation at the bottom of the front door and I’m told it’s called an airbump capsule.
The seats are gorgeous and came in a very attractive grey chevron cloth with black leather effect seats and Emerald Green stitching. The interior décor is brightened with a cream roofline. The infotainment screen is neat and overall the cabin has an uncluttered look to it.
You get USB C and USB B charge points under the infotainment screen and your gear selection lever is located between the driver and front passenger. There are also mobile phone charge points available for the back seat passengers where there is room for three adults.
The e-C4 X was described to me by a man who has spent his lifetime in the motor trade as a “hatchback with a saloon boot”. That’s a fairly accurate description as the boot is massive. In the boot there is a ‘well’ to hold a spare wheel, but as is normal nowadays no spare is provided.
I liked it, but would still prefer a petrol version.
I’m not mad about electric cars as charging is always a worry. We need many more charge points around the country and charge points where any type of a charge card will work. We need chargers where for example an ESB charge card will work at an Ionity charger. A few years back people were worried about roaming charges for their mobiles phones, that was sorted by the EU. Now can Brussels sort out the charging issues?
Hopefully the EU will insist that it doesn’t matter who owns a charge point and that you can charge a car with any type of charge card. Do we have to wait until 2030 for that to happen?
Prices for the eC4 x start at €41,455.