REVIEW – CITROËN C5 X (2022) – DRIVES LIKE A ROLLS-ROYCE
French flying carpet
The 2CV is perhaps the most iconic Citroën of all time, but luxury sedans such as the CX, XM, SM and DS also fall into the category of real classics. With the C5 X, the French car maker introduces a new flagship. The model offers the best that Citroën has to offer, of course in its own way.
Citroen C5 X
Is it a sedan, is it an estate or is it an SUV? No, it is the Citroën C5 X. The luxury travel car has a special body shape. It has the length of a sedan and the space of a station wagon. The French then poured an SUV sauce over it. He is not really high on his wheels, but the plastic protective edges around the wheel arches give the car some extra face.
The body shape may be a bit strange, but chances are that you will see this shape even more often in the D-segment in the coming years. Ford has already announced that the new Mondeo will be higher on its wheels and the Opel Insignia will not return to the market in its current form.
Why does Citroën not just introduce a real luxury SUV?
The French are not secretive about that. With this model, Citroën hopes to score well in China. The Chinese have little interest in high SUVs. Long wheelbase models are very popular there. Many European automakers often offer extended versions of their models exclusively for the Chinese market. Think, for example, of an extra long Mercedes-Benz E-Class. The C5 X is also such a long and dignified sled. The wheelbase is a generous 2.78 meters. The C5 X is also 4.80 meters long, 1.86 meters wide and 1.48 meters high.
A real Citroen
Now that the C5 X is already rolling off the line there – it is even built in China – it is a small effort to introduce it in Europe. But make no mistake, the C5 X is a real Citroën . No Chinese imitation. You can see that when you see him. He looks pretty quirky. The V-shaped signature of the LED headlights forms an X-shape with a little imagination (C5 X, get it?) and the air intake at the bottom of the front bumper resembles a wide stretched Citroën logo. The design is also striking at the back. Two spoilers, a blacked-out C-pillar and V-shaped taillights are a few things that you don’t often encounter on other cars.
We have found that the C5 X is not a real SUV, but it is not a sedan or station wagon either. It has a sloping roofline and an (electrically operated) tailgate, so it is actually a hatchback. That means a large loading opening, making it easy to load and unload.
With a capacity of 545 liters, the trunk is big enough. The PHEV variant that we drive offers about 60 liters less. Two levers in the luggage compartment allow you to flatten the rear seat in an instant. In that case you can lose 1,640 liters of luggage. The sill threshold is remarkably low for a crossover.
In luxury models from Citroën, you are often just as comfortable in the back as in the front. French presidents often allowed themselves to be driven around in a Citroën for a reason. Also in the C5 X you sit fine in the second row of seats. The back seat is just as comfortable as the sofa in your living room. There is so much legroom that you can sit completely stretched out. Headroom is also okay, but the sloping roofline does cause problems for people who are taller than 1.90 meters. Long doors make it easy to get in and out and double glazing ensures a quiet ride.
The interior design looks a little less exciting than the exterior design, but it’s nice to look at. The materials used are — as you would expect in a top model — of high quality. Everything you touch feels soft and the finish is of a high level. The stitching on the seats and door panels forms the Citroën logo, details that you would like to see in a French car.
New Infotainment System
A new system from Citroën runs on the 12-inch infotainment screen (10-inch for the base model). We already know it from the Peugeot 308, DS4 and Opel Astra, but the interface is of course different and equipped with a Citroën skin. The infotainment system responds surprisingly quickly, so you can easily go through the menus. Two physical buttons below the screen provide direct access to the home screen and vehicle settings. Fortunately, the climate control is also operated via physical (rotary) buttons. Of course, the system is suitable for both (wireless) Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
You can get the C5 X with regular petrol engines (130 and 180 hp) and a plug-in hybrid powertrain. The latter consists of a 1.6-litre petrol engine that delivers 180 hp and a 110 hp electric motor. The total system power is 225 hp and 360 Nm of torque. More than enough to get going smoothly. You can charge the 12 kWh battery pack in about two hours, after which you can drive about 50 kilometers fully electrically. All versions of the C5 X have front-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission.
The PHEV variant is the most attractive version in our country, because of its low CO2 emissions. As a result, you have quite a bit of horsepower at your disposal for a relatively reasonable amount. In addition, the partly electric version is the most comfortable version. Just think about it: instant torque, smooth and linear acceleration and 50 completely silent kilometers.
The chassis is not as soft as the seats, but it is not much. Just like the luxurious Citroëns of yesteryear, the C5 X floats over the asphalt. This Citroën also uses a hydroactive suspension system. The dampers have a kind of extra mini damper on top. Progressive Hydraulic Cushions the French call it. Every bump or pothole in the road is effortlessly absorbed, making the driving experience almost comparable to that of a Rolls-Royce Ghost . In the plug-in hybrid you can set the hydraulic dampers in different positions. Are you looking for a car that will take you from point A to point B as comfortably as possible? Then look no further, because there is no more comfortable car in this segment. In the video below we tell you more about the driving experience.
Prices Citroën C5 X
The C5 X has a starting price of 37,590 euros. For this you get the entry-level 1.2-liter three-cylinder petrol engine that is good for 130 hp. For 43,190 euros you get a 1.6-liter four-cylinder under the hood, which is good for 180 hp. As mentioned, the PHEV is the most logical choice in our country. You drive that from 42,290 euros (Business variant), while it has 225 hp and lower fuel consumption.