CitroŽn C5 Aircross Pure Tech - Shine Review
Cool, Comfy & Classy

khim yap
14 Aug 2019
 

In case you were wondering why the gearbox has an auspicious-sounding, foodie-inspired name, EAT is short for “Efficient Automatic Transmission".

Citroen recently launched their all-new flagship model, the Citroen C5 Aircross SUV, and we were delighted to get behind the wheel and spend some time with this French beauty.

Citroen has been known for their top-notch suspension system, and the C5 Aircross comes equipped with a suspension system that Citroen calls Progressive Hydraulic Cushions. It’s supposed to handle both large bumps and minor ones well, and make occupants in the C5 Aircross feel like they are riding on a flying carpet. Well, after spending two days with the car, I can say that it is certainly very comfortable, and without being too soft either. The car still feels stable without too much sway, despite the SUV’s tall stance.

Maximum power on the C5 Aircross’ 1.6-litre Petrol Direct Turbo Injection engine is rated at 180ps, and torque is at 250Nm. It clocks a top speed of 219kmh, and completes the 0-100kmh sprint in 9.0 seconds — very decent numbers for a 1.6-litre SUV.

The C5 Aircross has a very unique and distinctive look that gives it a cool and quirky personality. If you’re looking for something European, and you don’t want to drive a car that looks too generic or run-of-the-mill, then the C5 Aircross is perfect for you. The car looks imposing, bold, and yet stylishly contemporary.

The All-New Citroen C5 offers loads of cargo space that’s highly configurable to suit your needs. Each of the three seats in the second row can be individually selected to move forward, recline or folded. Boot space starts at 580 litres, but move the rear seats forward, and you’ve got 670 litres of cargo space. If you need even more space, fold the rear seats down, and you’ve got an amazing 1630 litres of cargo space! I also like that the boot floor offers two different depths; one that’s flushed with the edge of the boot and another lower level if you need more space.

Safety features on the C5 Aircross are excellent as well with six airbags, Hill-start Assist, Electronic Stability Program (ESP), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Emergency Brakeforce Distribution, Active Blind Spot Monitoring System, Active City Brake, Active Lane Keep Assist, Speed Limit Recognition and Recommendation as well as Coffee Break Alert that reminds the driver to take a break after driving for more than 2 hours at speeds above 65kmh. How thoughtful?!

Inside
The finishing on the inside of the C5 Aircross is stylish, tasteful, and feels premium. And I especially love the finishing on the seats. I have always felt that fabric seats are much more comfortable than leather seats, but of course, leather is easier to maintain and more practical. The C5 Aircross combines both materials for its seats. On the stain prone areas, the seats use grained leather, and at the edge of the seat just below the knee, where the touchpoints are, the seats are fabric. The result is both practical and very comfortable. 

I also love the MOMOesque, square-cut steering wheel shape that feels much more ergonomic than regular round steering wheels. Not only does it look good, but it also offers a much better grip when turning the wheel.

The C5 Aircross SUV also has plenty of useful and intelligent cubbyholes all around the car. There’s a large compartment under the central armrest, and the glove box is roomy too. And, if you’ve got a new generation smartphone, you’ll also appreciate the car’s inbuilt Qi wireless charging tray. Another feature that I like on the C5 is the very helpful seatbelt indicator that’s situated near the rearview mirror. One look at it and you’ll be able to tell if all your occupants have been properly belted up before you move off. From the display, you’ll be able to tell specifically who hasn’t belted up.

Behind the steering wheel, you get a wide 12.3" TFT digital instrument panel, and in the middle of the dashboard, there’s an 8” capacitive touchscreen. The car’s sound system is decent, but if you’re an audiophile, then you’d most likely want to upgrade this sound system.

One gripe I have with the Aircross is with the turn signal lever. The turn signal lever is clustered on the left side of the steering wheel together with the paddle gear shifter and the cruise control stalk. The three are placed too close together, in my opinion. In some other cars, the paddle shifters have a metallic edge that helps give you a tactile cue without requiring you to look down. On the C5, they are all made of the same material, and because of this, it is easy to grab the wrong lever.

The Drive
The C5 Aircross is clearly a comfortable car to drive, and despite its hefty physique, the car doesn’t feel underpowered. It may not be blistering fast, but the car’s 1.6-litre Petrol Direct Turbo Injection engine performs comfortably. You can select NORMAL, ECO or SPORT drive modes. NORMAL and ECO drive modes are once again, comfortable, but SPORT isn’t. The engine feels strained, and it sounds like it is trying to hold on to the gears longer than it really should. NORMAL mode is really the best mode to drive this car in.

Gear changes are smooth with its 8-speed, EAT8 automatic gearbox. If you prefer, you can also change gears manually using the paddle-shifters mounted on the steering wheel. In case you were wondering why the gearbox has an auspicious-sounding, foodie-inspired name, EAT is short for “Efficient Automatic Transmission". With its eight gears and relatively low engine capacity, the C5 Aircross offers pretty good fuel economy (combined) of 5.7 l/100km (or 17.5km/l).

Our Thoughts
While I had a few gripes with the car, there’s a lot to like about the Citroen C5 Aircross SUV. As a total package, it has got lots going for it. I really like its unique and thoughtful features like its ultra-comfortable seats and MOMOesque, square-cut steering wheel and I love it’s cool and quirky looks.

If you’re the kind that wants an SUV with European prestige and build quality, and you want to drive something that’s more distinctive, then the C5 Aircross is perfect for you.

In Summary

We Like

Ultra-comfortable seats, MOMOesque steering wheel and quirky looks.

We Don't

Crowded indicator lever position, SPORT mode that sounds strained, and average sound system.

Verdict

The C5 Aircross SUV offers Continental brand prestige, solid build quality, with quirky French flair design.

Car Loan Calculator - CitroŽn C5 Aircross Pure

SGD 132,999 (24 Jun 2019)

Based on OMV, this car is eligible for minimum 40% down payment

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Engine

Engine Capacity 1598cc Turbocharged
Engine Type Inline 4
Power 178bhp @ 5500rpm
Torque 250Nm @ 1650rpm
Power to Weight 124.5 bhp per ton

Performance

Acceleration 9s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 219 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 17.5 km/L

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 8 -speed Auto
Drive Type FF
Steering Electric

Measurements

Body Type SUV
Dimension
(L x W x H)
(4500 x 1859 x 1695) mm
Wheelbase 2730 mm
Turning Circle 10.7 metres
Kerb Weight 1430 kg
Boot Capacity 580 L
Fuel Tank Capacity 60 L

Brakes

Brakes (Front) Discs
Brakes (Rear) Discs