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Citroen C5 2.7 TDi Tourer Exclusive review



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When it comes to car-related clichés, Citroën has automotive quirkiness all sewn up. At least, that used to be the case. Following a succession of pathologically bland cars in the 1990s, the French firm has only recently begun to once again pay more than lip service to a heritage rich in engineering innovation and offbeat design.

Of course, cars have evolved almost beyond recognition since Citroën carved out a niche courtesy of forward-looking models such as the Traction Avant and innovations including air suspension or the helical gear pattern that forms the basis of the company's logo to this day. It's now digital systems as much as the oily bits that separate the good from the bad and the bland from the grand in the modern automotive jungle.

With all that in mind, how exactly does Citroën's infotainment kit stack up compared to the competition? Is it, perhaps, permeated with Citroën's singular tradition of imaginative, independent thinking? If so, is that actually a good thing or is there no place for quirkiness in contemporary infotainment systems?

To find out, we snagged an example of the incumbent flagship of Citroën's range, the C5. It's a large, comfort-oriented cruiser in the traditional Gallic idiom. It's not an absolutely brand spankers model having been on the market for around a year. But it is new enough to pack a huge range of in-car technology along with a handful of intriguing driver aids.

Our test C5 is the family-friendly Tourer in range-topping Exclusive trim and benefits from a thorough plundering of the options list. Highlights start with the obligatory sat-nav installation and extend to a hard-drive based music system, voice control and even a lane-departure warning system that gives the driver's bum a buzzing sensation. Power, meanwhile, comes from the company's 2.7-litre V6 diesel lump - a 208hp unit with 325lb/ft of torque which feeds the front wheels via a 6-speed automatic gearbox for suitably effortless progress. Oh, and for the record our C5 does indeed come complete with Citroën's signature hydro-pneumatic suspension.

Thus specified, the C5 rocks the price lists at a hefty £30,580. Well into the premium territory that so often proves problematic for middle market brands like Citroën, in other words. But the C5 does have a few things going for it. For starters it's a big, imposing beast. It certainly looks like thirty grand worth of car. As a Citroën, it also boasts a certain eclectic charm that eludes more resolutely mass market makes such as Ford and Vauxhall. Nevertheless, it still faces a monumental task in taking on the usual German and Japanese suspects.

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June 23, 2009, 5:42 am

That's an awesome (erggg) display of grey plastic on that dash ;)

I was also wondering if the car industry is somehow shielded from the dubious legal practice of allowing CD ripping. -Given that pirates are derided and pursued so relentlessly by the music industry currently? Or, is this a case of the old radar detectors - you could sell 'em but not use 'em - legally speaking...Just curious.


June 23, 2009, 3:20 pm

Your review is totally off-topic: this is NOT a review of a this car - it's basically a review of its entertainment system !! How about writing a review of the car!! Very disappointing and unworthy of this site


June 23, 2009, 5:46 pm

@Bornesen: TrustedReviews is primarily a technology news and reviews website, so it's to be expected that they focus on the technology inside the car. If you want an all-round review of the vehicle, there are plenty of motoring websites and magazines available.


June 24, 2009, 9:25 am

If you're going to choose a car based off of the quality of the technology inside of it, then you probably have enough money to be able to take some time and rethink the priorities in your life... Oh and the flagship of the Citroën range is the C6... Just as a small point.


June 25, 2009, 5:51 pm

To be fair - my over riding concern when buying new cars is all about the tech inside - that's where I spend many hours each day driving around the M25 and if the tech it comes with isn't exactly right I'm just not interested. kudos to trustedreviews for starting to review cars in this way :) Now if you could review the upcoming Idrive system due for release by BMW in the Autumn I'd be a happy man


April 17, 2010, 2:33 am

more like a advert for car audio accesories, i was searching for a driving experience of this and the performance and merits if any of the v6 engine, i have had 3 different models of the citroen range and this review has given me more details of audio specs for the tourer which is ok if you purchase the tourer but iam interested in the exclusive. model which has not got the audio system mentioned in this road test. i have noticed your remarks re the trusted reviews is mainly a technology website but the car industry does have other technology in their models apart from audio and gps systems ??

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