Best people carrier: New Car Awards 2014
The Citroen Grand C4 Picasso is the 2014 Auto Express MPV of the Year, with the Citroen C4 Picasso and SEAT Alhambra commended
Most seven-seat models are very practical but just a little too sensible and staid. However, that’s not the case with the head-turning Citroen Grand C4 Picasso, which effortlessly combines form and function.
The distinctive French machine looks great no matter which angle you view it from, and there are plenty of neat details and design flourishes throughout. It’s the same story for the interior, which is boldly styled, well built and packed with luxurious materials. Yet none of these eye-catching additions comes at the expense of practicality. At the core of the Picasso are its abilities as an extremely versatile family-friendly holdall. For starters, the cabin is vast and packed with thoughtful touches.
The seven-seat layout is very flexible and the individual seats can be folded flat to create a van-like 2,181 litres of carrying capacity.
Yet first and foremost these machines are people carriers, and it’s when the seats are up that the Citroen really scores. The middle row gets a trio of full-sized chairs, plus acres of head and legroom. Even the two rearmost seats will accommodate adults, unlike many rivals’.
Of course, you wouldn’t expect an MPV to drive like a sports car, but the confidence-inspiring C4 always feels capable and composed, allowing you to throw it around like a family hatchback. However, it’s the comfort and refinement that really steal the show, as the hushed Picasso floats serenely over bumps that would send shockwaves through rivals.
Finally, a range of impressively frugal diesel engines – the thirsty petrol is best avoided – means the Citroen will cost pennies to run, despite looking like a million dollars. Never has being sensible been so fashionable.
Grand C4 Picasso 2.0 HDi Exclusive (£24,455)
Plush Exclusive trim lets you enjoy the full first class travel experience of the Picasso’s spacious cabin and refined cabin. Smooth 2.0-litre HDi is a gutsy and frugal performer.
Commended people carriers
Citroen C4 Picasso
Just like the Grand C4 but in a smaller package, the standard C4 Picasso is also a tempting offering. The five-seater cabin is extremely roomy and full of neat additions, while the bold styling takes its cues from is seven-seater big brother. You also get the same refined and highly relaxing driving experience.
It’s missed out on its fourth win in a row, but the Alhambra is still a top choice. Its boxy lines hide one of the biggest cabins around, helping to make this the seven-seater to choose if you frequently travel seven-up. And while it’s not glamorous to look at, the SEAT is good to drive, well built and backed by great-value prices.
- 1IntroductionWe reveal the best new cars on sale today in every sector of the market, plus we name our overall 2014 Car of the Year
- 2Car of the Year 2014The British-built MINI is Auto Express' Car of the Year 2014
- 3City Car of the YearThe Skoda Citigo is the 2014 Auto Express City Car of the Year, with the Hyundai i10 and Toyota Aygo commended
- 4Supermini of the YearThe Ford Fiesta is the 2014 Auto Express Supermini of the Year, with the Dacia Sandero and Peugeot 208 commended
- 5Premium Small Car of the YearThe MINI is the 2014 Auto Express Premium Small Car of the Year, with the Audi A1 and Citroen DS3 commended
- 6Small Family Car of the Year The SEAT Leon is the 2014 Auto Express Small Family Car of the Year, with the Mazda 3 and Volkswagen Golf commended
- 7Family Car of the Year The Mazda 6 is the 2014 Auto Express Family Car of the Year, with the Skoda Superb and Vauxhall Insignia commended
- 8Estate Car of the Year The SEAT Leon ST is the 2014 Auto Express Estate of the Year, with the BMW 5 Series and Skoda Octavia Estate commended
- 9MPV of the Year - currently readingThe Citroen Grand C4 Picasso is the 2014 Auto Express MPV of the Year, with the Citroen C4 Picasso and SEAT Alhambra commended
- 10Crossover of the Year The Nissan Qashqai is the 2014 Auto Express Crossover of the Year, with the Citroen C4 Cactus and Mazda CX-5 commended
- 11Compact SUV of the Year The Porsche Macan is the 2014 Auto Express small SUV of the Year, with the Dacia Duster and Range Rover Evoque commended
- 12Large SUV of the Year The Hyundai Santa Fe is the 2014 Auto Express large SUV of the Year, with the Land Rover Discovery and Range Rover Sport commended
- 13Pick-Up Truck of the Year The Volkswagen Amarok is the 2014 Auto Express Pick-up of the Year, with the Ford Ranger and SsangYong Korando Sport commended
- 14Hot Hatch of the Year The SEAT Leon Cupra is the 2014 Auto Express City Car of the Year, with the Ford Fiesta ST and VW Golf GTI commended
- 15Convertible of the Year The Audi A3 Cabriolet is the 2014 Auto Express Convertible of the Year, with the BMW 4 Series Convertible and Porsche 911 Cab commended