New Citroen C5 X flagship crossover set to offer ‘ultimate comfort’
The new flagship Citroen C5 X will arrive with petrol and plug-in hybrid power, and looks set to cost from around £27,000 when it arrives in the UK in early 2022
Citroen continues to plough its own furrow with its focus on comfort, and the new Citroen C5 X flagship is claimed to be the ultimate expression of relaxation and well-being. First of all, let’s explain the name: the X is easy – this is a crossover melding the styling and attitude of saloons, SUVs and station wagons.
But C5? Looking at the C5 X, it’s a world away from the more functional and playful character of the C5 Aircross compact SUV; a deal more premium with its more considered lines and minimalist, classy interior. However, it does share the same EMP2 platform, plus petrol and plug-in hybrid powertrains, with the C5 Aircross (and other larger members on the PSA side of the new Stellantis group).
The naming is best explained by Citroen CEO Vincent Cobee, 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.”
That’s reflected in the pricing, expected to start from around £27,000 going up to around £35,000 for the plug-in hybrid version. For that you get a car that measures 4,805mm long, so it’s slightly longer than a Peugeot 508 SW, but with a slightly shorter wheelbase at 2,785mm.
The focus with the C5 X is on roominess, though, both in the cabin and in the 545-litre boot (again, slightly bigger than the 508 SW’s) that will apparently hold a washing machine when the seats are folded and the full 1,640 litres space is revealed.
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 DRLs 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. There’s no sign of any air bumps along the side, just gentle creases at the bottom of the doors, while there’s a prominent kick upwards in the window line above the rear wheels.
At the back the bumper is clad in black plastic – another nod to SUV styling – while there are two spoilers; one at the top and one at the bottom of the rear glass. LED lights follow those at the front in a V-shaped arrangement, while both the double chevron and the Citroen name sit on the hatch door to leave you in no doubt of the car’s provenance. It all adds up to a super-stylish, very modern crossover that’s still very Citroen.
Until we’ve had a chance to sit in the C5 X, we’re unable to verify whether Citroen has managed to make more space than we’ve seen so far from a car on EMP2, but the claims are that it will be ‘a passenger compartment worthy of a lounge area’ with ‘unparalleled roominess’.
You’ll be sitting on Advanced Comfort seats that feature special padding like a mattress topper, while Advanced Comfort active suspension debuts on the plug-in hybrid version, offering three modes to enhance the effectiveness of the Progressive Hydraulic Cushions that are standard on the rest of the range.
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 separated sitting lower down on the clean, uncluttered dash. The infotainment also features over-the-air updates, while there’s the option of an advanced head-up display that’s a sizeable 21 inches wide.
Voice recognition, plus level two autonomous technology that blends adaptive cruise control with lane keeping assistance add to the safety and wellbeing of the driver and occupants, while wireless smartphone charging and mirroring on the infotainment screen are among the convenience features.
Citroen has already said that there won’t be a diesel in the C5 X line-up, even though full engine details currently remain under wraps. We’d expect the 128bhp 1.2 PureTech three-cylinder petrol engine from the C5 Aircross to feature, although that car’s 222bhp plug-in hybrid system, offering a maximum range of 31 miles when fully charged, has been confirmed.
There is the possibility that a larger battery could eventually find its way into the C5 X PHEV, though, according to Cobée. “This will evolve,” he told us. “Yes, we will be able to increase zero emissions range in the life of the vehicle.”
A fully electric version is less likely. “Full electric is in our minds, but not in our plans,” said Cobée. “It might be an evolution depending on battery technology and charging infrastructure – in three to four years, it could be more relevant.”
We’re going to have to wait a while for the C5 X in the UK, though. Although the new car debuts in France at the end of 2021, the first cars over here aren’t set to arrive until the first quarter of 2022.
Click here for our in-depth review of the Citroen C5 Aircross...