November 4th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
Fiat pulled it off with its new 500/Bambina, and VW did the same with the Beetle so Citroën is looking seriously at jumping on the retro-sytle bandwagon and bringing back its 2CV.
According to recent reports the French carmaker is making plans to design and develop a modern version of the iconic 2CV. It isn’t expected until 2013 at the earliest and at this stage it is a top secret project. What is known is that the 3CV will inherit the spirit of its ancestor and offer plenty of space and a comfortable ride.
If the 3CV goes ahead it will likely be built on the same PF1 platform that supports the Peugeot 207 and Citroëns DS3 and C3. But it will be smaller than the C3.
More will be revealed next year.
October 22nd, 2011 by Tim Grimley
The more – and almost certainly even the less – observant amongst you will have noticed that over the last few weeks there have been more than a few tenuous links made between rugby and motoring in this column. And as the biggest match in New Zealand rugby since 1987 is being played out in Auckland’s own theatre of dreams this weekend, it would be all too easy to find one more pretty loose tie-in between the unlikely bedfellows that are egg chasing and motoring.
And so, therefore, I will.
But rather than dwelling too heavily on the sport itself, my focus is rather more on one of the participants in Sunday night’s encounter – the French. As a previous inhabitant of the Northern shores of La Manche, I learned a long time ago that the only thing that could be expected from the French with any degree of certainty is the unexpected.
Ooh la la! Beauty........
Nowhere is this more certain than in the motoring world, where no-one could ever be sure if their next release was going to be a work of beauty, genius, madness or just plain badness. Sometimes, as was the case with the massively opinion polarising 2CV, they managed to do all four at once. Just for the sheer hell of it I suspect.
This is the nation that can give the Citroen DS with one hand – a vehicle of such unquestionable beauty that it makes you wonder why all cars cannot be styled in such a way – and then take it all back again with a monstrosity like the Renault Fuego with the other. But just to keep a sense of mystery, excitement and intrigue in the relationship, every so often they throw you a Peugeot 205 GTi. Followed rather quickly by a Renault Safrane.
Yet for all their little highs and lows, if you ever needed the ultimate proof that our garlic obsessed cousins are capable of crushing the world when it is least expected, look no further than the Bugatti Veyron. Yes, it sounds Italian and yes, a lot of the bits come from parent company VW, but hailing as it does from Molsheim in the Alsace, the Bugatti is every bit as French as impassive shrugging and baguettes. With its roots back in 2005, when the Gallic automotive output was typified by the blandest Peugeots in living memory, the Veyron was a stark reminder that when the Frenchies put their minds to it, they can not only take on the world, but simply blow it away with their effortless style. Continue reading “Pay Attention, It’s Time For A French Lesson” »
October 18th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
Citroën has been a busy carmaker in recent years, particularly with its new DS range of vehicles. The DS nameplate was dormant for many year but now it covers a lineup of three models the DS3, DS4 and DS5. Citroën isn’t planing on slowing down with its DS development and has some new plans in the pipeline.
Perhaps the most exciting area of development involves Citroën’s DS3 Racing. The easy-to-spot hot hatch, with its turbocharged four-cylinder engine and striking colour scheme, was initially planned as a limited edition of 1,000 vehicles. But it proved a hot-selling hot hatch and demand across Europe meant production was increased to 2,400. Now, reports are suggesting that a new version of the popular hatch could already be in development.
Citroën is also experiencing a strong period of demand in China and is looking at expanding its range with a larger version of the DS5. There are also rumours that a production version of the Metropolis concept (pictured) could be built. Continue reading “Citroën to expand DS range with new models” »
September 5th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
Keen bumper sticker readers would have surely seen the classic “If the wagons rocking don’t come a knocking” label affixed to the occasional van. Now Citroen has brought the shagging wagon into the 21st century with its latest show car concept. The French carmaker has just revealed official images of its new concept van named the Tubik which is set for an official debut at the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show.
The French have done more for romance than just invent pashing a.k.a French kissing, they also came up with two of the first shagging wagons – the 1939 Tub van and its replacement, the 1948 Type H that was produced up until the beginning of the 1980s. The Tubik concept pays homage to these historic machines and adds a range of modern conveniences.
The Tubik isn’t just about the horizontal action and can serve as both a commercial van and a people carrier with very usable dimensions; 4.8 metres long, 2.08m wide and 2.05m tall. The space age carrier can seat up to nine passengers in three lounge-style seats, with the driver operating in a separated compartment. As for windows – who really needs them? Continue reading “Citroën reveals Tribek concept – shagging wagon of the future” »
April 19th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
Citroen has given the motoring world its first look at the much anticipated DS5 with its official launch at the Shanghai Auto Show.
The changes from the standard C5 on which the DS5 is based, are substantial. The new model comes with a crossover styled body, dual exhausts and modern LED lights.
The DS5 is a five-door hatchback, with a coupe-like sloping roofline and raised driving position. It’s measurements are 4.52 m long and 1.85 m wide – still fairly compact dimensions but firmly within the mid-sized segment the DS5 will compete in.
But the crossover/coupe body style will separate the DS5 from many competitors in the mid-size segment making its design a key factor in potential success.
In terms of power the DS5 that will debut at the Auto Shanghai comes with the PSA Group’s HYbrid4 technology which featuring a 120 kW 2.0 litre diesel engine matched to a 27 kW electric motor turning the rear wheels. Continue reading “Citroen shows off new DS5 hatch in Shanghai” »
April 15th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
Many men spend time wondering what exactly is the best car to own if you want to impress the ladies. A Kermit green Series 2 Mazda RX-7 may have done the trick twenty five years ago, but in 2011 women are more impressed by style, economy and practicality. So if you want to win some points pick up your date in a BMW 5-Series or a Citroen DS3.
Because us men were never going to uncover these important results ourselves a crack team of woman motoring writers from around the globe recently held the annual Women’s World Car of the Year for 2011. The voting finished so close that the supreme award produced a dead heat between the BMW 5 Series and the Citroen DS3. So gents, if you’re on a budget go for French style in the DS3, if your cashed-up, then spring for the current 5-Series BMW and don’t cheapen out of the leather trim.
Category winners and runners up in the competition included:
Family Car Winner – Volvo S60
Runner up – Kia Sportage
Sports Car Winner – Aston Martin Rapide
Runner up – Audi TT
Luxury Car Winner - BMW 5 Series
Runner up – Jaguar XJ
Economical Car Winner - Citroen DS3
Runner up – Mini One Diesel Continue reading “Chicks dig BMW 5-Series and Citroen DS3 – it’s official” »
February 3rd, 2011 by Darren Cottingham
After months of “are they really a couple” rumours BMW and PSA Peugeot Citroen have officially hopped into bed together to work on a hybrid drivetrain.
Building all the systems and hardware that goes into crafting a hybrid drivetrain can be highly expensive so the two Automotive heavyweights have joined forces. The companies are set to partner up on everything from battery packs and generators to software and chargers. However the main goal of the corporate marriage is to build an open European hybrid platform which will give them a little bit of structure and an edge in the upcoming electrified battle.
The joint venture is expected to get under way in the next few months, and BMW says that the first products to make use of the new technology will be on roads by 2014 at the earliest. According to reports, the very first vehicles to carry the new-age hybrid gear under its bonnet will likely be the Mini Countryman or a Countryman-based model.
November 17th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham
The Citroen C3 has touched down in New Zealand, with the French car maker’s all-new small car making its debut in showrooms before Christmas with an entry level price of $24,990 plus on road costs.
“The Citroen C3 transformed the Australian perception of Citroen,” claims Lawrie Malatios, General Manager of Citroen New Zealand. “It brought to our market for the first time small Citroens which, although they have played a major role in the European car market for most of Citroen’s history, had not been seen here. The arrival of the C3 brought a whole generation of young car buyers to Citroen for the first time, as well as a considerable number of female buyers. The new C3 will expand and develop its role of introducing the benefits of Citroen ownership to young car buyers, but, at the same time, with its sophisticated styling and performance, it will also be attractive to people wishing to downsize their car without any loss of style, comfort and driving pleasure.”
In addition, thanks to the availability of the unique panoramic Zenith windscreen, new C3 provides a spacious cabin. As one of the most compact models in the small car sector (9 cm shorter than 207 and Clio); the new C3 has a generous cabin environments and a class-leading 300-litres of boot space.
On the road, new C3 combines refined performance with a smooth ride and nimble handling. The designers’ focus on the control of weight and optimising aerodynamics means the new C3 is one of CitroÃ«n’s most CO2-efficient models. To further promote money-saving greener driving, most versions feature a Gear Efficiency Indicator (GEI), which alerts the driver at the optimum moment to change gear – helping them to minimise fuel consumption.
In terms of equipment the new C3 is available with Bluetooth and USB connectivity for portable media players as standard on the Exclusive versions and optional on other variants. The new C3 also benefits from a six-speaker audio system, with the availability of a new optional eight-speaker Hi-Fi system for concert theatre-like sound quality.
The New C3 will initially be offered with a choice of two petrol power-plants — one of which was co-developed with BMW. With a combined cycle fuel economy of as little as 6.3 l/100 km and carbon dioxide rating of 145 g/km the C3 is hoping to appeal to enviromentally conscious kiwis.
Continue reading “Citroen C3 arrives in NZ – on sale from $24,990” »