New Citroen C5 X: French flagship gets updated for 2023
Citroen’s range-topping C5 X has already received an infotainment upgrade
There are still three trim levels for Citroen C5 X buyers to choose from with Sense Plus, Shine and Shine Plus. A choice of pure petrol or plug-in hybrid power is also available across the trim levels. Now the top spec Shine Plus models add upgraded ‘Highway Integrated Assist Plus’ which includes semi-automatic lane change and speed assist systems.
At first glance, usage of the C5 nameplate is a tricky one to wrap your head around. The C5 X is worlds apart from the more functional character of C5 Aircross SUV and is positioned as being slightly more premium, thanks to its cleaner surfacing and minimalist classy interior. With its raised ride height, the C5 X is certainly a departure from Citroen’s previous range-topping saloon cars such as the C6, XM and CX.
However, the C5 X does share its EMP2 platform, as well as its petrol and plug-in hybrid powertrains, with the C5 Aircross (and, indeed, other larger members on the PSA side of the Stellantis group).
The naming is best explained by Citroen CEO Vincent Cobée, who told us: “We’ve had a lot of touring vehicles in the past called C5. We see this as a well-deserved, hedonist offer, not a luxury offer – it’s a dream you can have.”
New 2022 Citroen C5 X: design and interior
The C5 X is longer than the Peugeot 508 SW at 4,805mm but the wheelbase is a little shorter, though, at 2,785mm. Citroen’s focus for the C5 X is roominess, both in the cabin and the 545-litre boot (which is slightly larger than the 508 SW’s). Fold down the rear seats and that figure swells to 1,640 litres, which Citroen says is enough space for a washing machine.
The C5 X takes its styling inspiration from the C-Xperience concept shown at the 2016 Paris Motor Show. The low, wide nose features prominent double chevrons in the centre that splay outwards towards a new V-shaped light signature with slim LED daytime running lights sitting above the main headlight units.
The long bonnet gets a distinctive hump in the centre, while tall, narrow wheels fill arches trimmed with subtle SUV-style cladding. Unlike the C5 Aircross, there are no air bumps along the car’s side – just gentle creases at the bottom of the doors. There’s also a prominent kick upwards in the window line above the rear wheels.
Citroen clad the rear bumper in black plastic as a nod to its SUV styling language and, rather oddly for a car so focused on comfort, there are two spoilers – one at the top and one at the bottom of the rear glass. The LED lights also follow the V-shaped design of those at the front. It all adds up to a super-stylish, very modern crossover that’s still very Citroen.
We’ve driven the C5 X, and can confirm Citroen’s focus on comfort and refinement hasn’t been lost on their new flagship. The cabin gets Citroen’s advanced-comfort seats that feature special padding, similar to a memory foam mattress topper. The plug-in hybrid model is also the first Citroen to receive the firm’s new Advanced Comfort active suspension, which offers a smooth ride.
Another first for the C5 X is an all-new 12-inch HD infotainment touchscreen that, like the new C4, has the heating and ventilation controls mounted separately, lower down on the dashboard. The infotainment system also features over-the-air updates, and there’s the option of an equipping and advanced head-up display that’s a sizeable 21 inches wide.
Level 2 autonomous driving technology (which blends adaptive cruise control with lane-keeping assistance) is also be available, along with convenience features such as voice recognition, wireless smartphone charging and screen mirroring.
New 2022 Citroen C5 X: engines and drivetrains
The engine line-up opens with the company’s turbocharged 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol engine, which develops 128bhp. Above that, there’s a 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol unit with 178bhp – and, unlike Citroen’s smaller vehicles, the C5 X is only available with an eight-speed automatic gearbox.
Above the petrols, there’ll be the same plug-in hybrid system found in the C5 Aircross, which blends the 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol engine with an electric motor and a 13.2kWh battery pack for a combined output of 222bhp and a maximum electric range of 31 miles. And 7.4kW single phase charging is standard.
However, according to Cobée, there is the possibility that a larger battery pack could eventually find its way into the C5 X PHEV. “This will evolve,” he told us. “Yes, we will be able to increase the zero-emissions range in the life of the vehicle.”
A fully electric version is less likely. Cobée said: “Fully electric is in our minds, but not in our plans. It might be an evolution depending on battery technology and charging infrastructure – in three to four years, it could be more relevant.”
New 2022 Citroen C5 X: UK prices and specifications
The entry level equipment level is called Sense Plus and is priced from £28,670 for the PureTech 130 petrol option, or £36,720 for the plug-in hybrid variant. Standard kit includes 19-inch alloy wheels and LED headlights, plus partial man-made leather upholstery. Technology includes a 10-inch central touchscreen display with 3D navigation and wireless smartphone mirroring, front and rear parking sensors with cornering detection, plus a reversing camera. There’s also automatic dual zone air-conditioning, a multifunction leather steering wheel with paddle shifters and keyless entry.
Shine models are available from £30,170, and this is the trim level where the more powerful 178bhp petrol option becomes an option, priced from £31,820. Shine models include further styling additions such as satin chrome trim on the rear bumper, along with partial leather/man-made leather upholstery in the cabin. A heated steering wheel is included and ambient LED lighting is equipped. This model also receives a larger central touchscreen as standard, sized at 12-inches, along with the full size head-up display, wireless smartphone charging and radar guided active safety braking.
Shine Plus is the range topping trim level and is offered from £32,160. These cars receive extended window tinting and acoustic insulation, plus full leather upholstery, with front seats that are electrically adjustable and heated. A power tailgate is standard along with a 360-degree style camera system and extended blind spot warning monitors. Like the Shine model, all three powertrains are available in Shine Plus cars.
Now read our review of the Citroen C5 X...