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Citroen C4 2007 Review

Citroen's C4 HDi is even more efficient these days.

It is without doubt one of the most frugal diesel passenger cars to reach our shores.

This is a fine package with smart, globe-like looks extending to a comfortable and well laid-out interior.

The C4 is now armed with a trick transmission called EGS (Electronic Gearbox System).

It comes with an extra cog (sixth) and as such is even kinder at the bowser than the manual equivalent.

But the EGS is a devil of a transmission to use if you try to treat it like a normal automatic, which of course it is not.

Let it change itself and it lurches and becomes clumsy.

You almost find yourself screaming at the shifter, “change any time you like as long as its sometime today”.

But the fact is this transmission needs driver intervention to smooth it out and enable it to become user-friendly.

Use either the shifter or the paddles mounted on the fixed hub steering wheel and a little throttle discipline, gear changes are lightning fast and almost seamless.

On this test of over 600km, the C4 was using about 5litres/100km, according to the onboard computer's figures. It is far superior to the manual C4 diesel, which we compared and tested last year, it finished at 6.25litres/100km after over 400km of testing.

There is a sport button which tightens up shift changes for a sharper drive.

This gearbox is clever, bit of work, but some would argue that it may be a bit too clever for its own good. Simply leaving it as a automatic device brings out its weakness. It is frustrating and at times can take the driver by surprise at low speed.

A case in point was in a multi-storey car park going up a small ramp to another level, when the EGS decided to change from second to first with the car virtually coming to a stop in the process.

It is not a gearbox for those who just want to turn the key, press the throttle, and be done with it. Driver involvement is required and once you learn the little idiosyncrasies it is quite an enjoyable little jigger.

Inside, Citroen have nailed the ergonomics with user-friendly controls which are easily accessed. It is a comfortable cabin and the ride is cushy.

The C4's handling is OK, although the steering feel is not as perfect as rival European hatches.

Brake pedal feel is strong and the stopping performance is quite impressive in emergency situations.

This is a well rounded package with lots of active and passive safety equipment.

For those seeking the frugal alternative without forsaking fruity performance, the C4 HDi EGS is worth discovering.

 


Citroen C4 1.6litre HDi EGS

$30,990

Engine:  4 stars 

Develops strong torque from mid-range

Transmission: 3 stars

A bit clumsy in auto mode

Handling: 3 stars

Brilliant ride, steering a little vague at times

Safety:  3 stars

Well kitted out with active and passive gear

value: 3 stars

$1k more than the equivalent manual could be contentious to some

Tech specs

Body: 5-door hatch

Engine: 1.6litre turbo diesel

Transmission: 6-speed Electronic Gearbox System (EGS)

Power: 80kW @ 4000rpm

Torque: 240Nm @ 1750rpm

Tyres: 16-inch

Verdict for: frugal, neat, practical

Against: Gearbox won't be for everyone

Smart option for those who do the miles to benefit from its fuel sipping habits

 

Pricing Guides

$4,990
Based on 13 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$1,600
Highest Price
$5,999

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
VTR 1.6L, ULP, 5 SP MAN $4,180 – 6,160 2007 Citroen C4 2007 VTR Pricing and Specs
VTS 2.0L, ULP, 5 SP MAN $5,060 – 7,370 2007 Citroen C4 2007 VTS Pricing and Specs
Exclusive 2.0L, ULP, 4 SP AUTO $5,950 – 5,999 2007 Citroen C4 2007 Exclusive Pricing and Specs
SX 1.6L, ULP, 4 SP AUTO $3,190 – 5,060 2007 Citroen C4 2007 SX Pricing and Specs