REVIEW: Citroen eC4

(Picture: William CROZES @ Continental Productions)

Colour is so important when choosing a new car. Naturally, car reviewers don’t have much choice on colour as we book the cars a few months in advance, and you cannot afford to be too fussy about colour at that stage.

Normally on Monday mornings I let the colour of my test car try and surprise me and sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.

Last week the electric version of the new Citroen C4 came in Oblia Blue Metallic, which was different and refreshing. Not white or red or silver, but Oblia Blue, a colour I hadn’t seen before.

When I sat in, I found the steering to be very light and the seats are very comfortable. Overall, very relaxing to drive and travel in.

Normally, we associate French cars with lots of style and flair, but nowadays maybe Citroen’s sister brand the DS is the one that leans more toward French style. That’s not to say that the eC4 is not stylish, it certainly is.

(Picture: William CROZES @ Continental Productions)

Externally the car has just one of the famous air bumps on the front doors; you may remember the air bumps from the Citroen Cactus. You can add a different colour to that singular air bump if you wish for an extra touch of style. My test car was fitted with 17-inch Hanoi alloys which also looked good.

Normally the dash in electric cars tends to be minimalistic. But in the eC4 it’s the same for all three variations so your ten-inch screen is the same for petrol, diesel and electric.

I liked the ‘pop-up’ speed display in the driver’s line of vision. No excuses for breaking the speed limit when a car has a heads-up display like that.

There is also a bonus for the front seat passenger, a gadget to hold a small tablet is located in the glove compartment. There are also B and C-type USB charge points in the front and back.

Officially, the proper name for the car is Citroen eC4. Sounds a bit like a London postal code, but it’s definitely French. Normally in an electric car the boot is smaller as the battery usually takes up a lot of space. But in the eC4, the boot size is 380 litres, the same in the petrol, diesel versions.

Citroen have obviously squeezed the battery in underneath. There is certainly great space in the boot which has two levels; the lower one is for storing you charge cables. But no spare wheel.

When you approach the car, the doors will automatically open once the key is in your pocket or in the case of a female, her handbag. And when you leave the car you will hear the re-assuring beep that the car has been locked. Room in the back for two in comfort, three at a squeeze.

(Picture: William CROZES @ Continental Productions)

Prices for the new C4 start at €24,740 which a 1.2-litre petrol. The eC4 start at €31,730, while my top of the range Flair version will cost you €36,603.

The battery range is estimated around 350km on a full charge and provided you don’t drive at 120km/h on motorways and use the air con sparingly you should get close to 330km on a full charge.

The only thing I didn’t like about it was the bar across the rear window. It reminded me of the old Honda Civic as it divides the rear window in two. Otherwise no complaints from me.