Citroen C1 review - Reliability and safety
Reliable Toyota engineering underpins the Citroen C1, and the car has performed well in comprehensive Euro NCAP crash tests.
By carrying over the basic chassis architecture and 1.0-litre engine from the previous-generation C1, Citroen is working with proven mechanicals.
French manufacturers don’t have the best reliability records, but considering a large chunk of the development work was conducted by Toyota (a brand famed for its bulletproof dependability), it’s a safe bet that the C1 won’t go wrong very often.
Under the skin, the C1 is a simple car so there’s relatively little to break – and although the quality of some of the interior materials isn’t up the standard of some rivals, there’s nothing yet to suggest it won’t be sufficiently resilient. The C1 finished 72nd out of 75 cars in our 2020 Driver Power owner satisfaction survey, while Citroen was voted into 18th position out of 30 manufacturers - ahead of Volkswagen, Ford and Mercedes.
While changes under the skin are limited, Citroen’s engineers bolstered the side impact protection, in a bid to improve on the previous-generation C1’s three-star Euro NCAP rating. This latest car achieved a four-star crash test score when it was tested in 2014.
There’s plenty of safety kit available as standard, including six airbags, a chassis stability system, electronic brake assistance and tyre pressure monitoring, which we reckon puts the C1 up there with the best cars in the class.
The mechanically identical Toyota Aygo comes with a five-year/100,000-mile warranty package, so Citroen C1 buyers might be a little miffed to discover that their car is supplied with only three years and 60,000 miles of cover. The Hyundai i10 is sold with a five-year deal, too, although the Skoda Citigo carries a similar three-year package to the Citroen.
If you’re buying a Citroen C1 as part of an economy drive, you’ll be pleased to know that servicing costs won’t break the bank. Citroen does offer a servicing package or 3 years/35,000 miles. The dealer will want the car back every 15,500 miles or 12 months to give it a check-up, and service costs start from a reasonable £115.
In this review
- 1VerdictIt’s got plenty of style and it’s decent to drive, but the Citroen C1 loses out to more practical city car rivals
- 2Engines, performance and driveThe C1's 1.0-litre engine can feel sluggish, but is good for those with a focus on economy.
- 3MPG, CO2 and Running CostsThe C1 isn’t the cheapest city car to run, although there are only pennies in it in this market.
- 4Interior, design and technologyChic styling inside and out hides a solid city car package; just don’t expect any surprises.
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot spaceOther city cars serve up greater practicality, but few are quite as compact as the latest Citroen C1.
- 6Reliability and Safety - currently readingReliable Toyota engineering underpins the Citroen C1, and the car has performed well in comprehensive Euro NCAP crash tests.