Citroen Picasso

It’s one of the most popular cars on our fleet thanks to its huge capacity – and recently, our C4 Picasso has helped create some great videos for our website

  • CHAIRS Having three separate rear seats with full belts is great. The middle occupant is able to sit on a proper chair instead of a hard, narrow bench. CABIN The front chairs are just as comfortable. And having the gearlever on the steering column frees up loads of extra space between passenger and driver.
  • HANDBRAKE I’m not a fan as it’s electric, and I get the feeling that it’s not giving me the same degree of control as a manual lever in low-speed traffic.NAVIGATION The mapping certainly looks great, but entering an address on the sat-nav system is far too fiddly.

A Picasso a day helps you work, rest and play. This is the theme that’s accompanied our Citroen since it first arrived on our fleet back in June. The multi-talented MPV has more than coped with everything we team has been able to throw at it.

The car is normally run by group publishing director James Burnay. But, as the magazine's film maker, I managed to snaffle the keys away from him to take the Citroen back to France to shoot the latest instalment of car video clips for our website (check them out at www.autoexpress.co.uk/video).

It racked up more than 1,800 miles in only three days, and had no difficulty swallowing all my bulky bags, tripods and other gear. What’s more, it swanned along the French autoroutes with no effort at all. But it’s not only work trips that account for the 7,800 miles the Picasso has clocked up. Closer to home, it was borrowed by circulation director Martin Belson for a trip to Wales. Like me, Martin found the comfortable seating and easy-to-use cruise control meant he still felt fresh even after a three-hour drive.

The generous gap between the two front seats ensured Martin’s wife could easily reach into the back to deal with three-year-old Daisy, who was kept amused by the built-in DVD system. And despite the spacious cabin and cavernous boot, the Picasso easily fitted down small Welsh lanes.

In the past few days the Citroen has been used by events manager Jemma Ryan for taking signs, tills, magazines and subscriber gifts up to the NEC in Birmingham for the MPH show, of which Auto Express is a media partner. With the seats folded flat, Jemma had no problem lugging all her kit to the event, and once again the Picasso excelled on the long haul.

It’s even come up trumps in city centres. A recent golf match meant James had to navigate his way through the streets of south London. The on-screen mapping proved simple to follow, and the EGS auto took the sting out of the traffic – although the column-mounted lever feels rather flimsy.

Most reassuringly, the Citroen hasn’t experienced any electrical gremlins or other reliability issues. In fact, the only problems we’ve encountered have been entirely self-inflicted – we buckled one of the rear seat runners, and more recently, James’s wife, Tori, got a little close to a wall for comfort.

This resulted in a nasty scrape on the nearside rear bumper. We’ll report back shortly on how the repairs on that damage are coming along...

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