Technically speaking

But once it gathers momentum, the C5's pace improves thanks to a reasonable 200Nm worth of pulling power produced at 4,000rpm.

The entry level C5's 1,997cc four-pot has seen service in a variety of models within the PSA Group - Peugeot 407, 307CC as well as Citroens like the previous generation C5 and Xsara among other models.

So it's not exactly a contemporary engine, and this is reflected in the way it performs. Unlike more modern engines where turbocharging or supercharging is commonly utilized for more low-end and mid-range torque, the C5's 2.0-litre unit lacks poke and hence, struggles to haul the 1,583kg saloon up to speed.

The C5's 140bhp is good enough to haul it up from rest to 100km/h in a time of 12.8 seconds, almost 3 seconds longer than the V6 model. And hardly competitive when compared to similarly sized 2.0-litre saloons from both Japan and Europe. But once it gathers momentum, the C5's pace improves thanks to a reasonable 200Nm worth of pulling power produced at 4,000rpm.

It's not exactly a refined engine as well as it can be rather boomy when you work it hard. Citroen is actually phasing out this engine within its range with a 1.6-litre turbo that has already been shoehorned in the local C4 range recently. So I really hope the C5 will get this punchy engine to replace the 2-litre unit soon...

Another big factor contributing to the C5's average performance is its four-speed automatic gearbox. While the V6's six-speeder is a major improvement in efficiency and shift quality compared to French auto boxes of old, the four-speed unit features usual power sapping and unresponsive bugbears.

Like every other French four-speed automatics I've experienced, the C5's suffers from some "slipping" in the mid-range - it just feels like the torque converter pauses for a while...before doing its job when you prod on the accelerator. Unfortunately, down shifts come after a short pause as well.

The box offers a "+/-" manual mode too, but this feature hardly redeems its other deficiencies.


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Engine Capacity 1997cc
Engine Type Inline 4
Bore x Stroke (85 x 88)mm
Power 143bhp @ 6000rpm
Torque 200Nm @ 4000rpm
Power to Weight 98.8 bhp per ton


Acceleration 12.8s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 205 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 9.5 km/L

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 4 -speed Auto Tiptronic
Drive Type FF


Body Type Sedan
(L x W x H)
(4779 x 1860 x 1451) mm
Wheelbase 2815 mm
Kerb Weight 1448 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity 66 L


Brakes (Front) Discs
Brakes (Rear) Discs