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Future models - Citroen - C-Aircross - Concept

Geneva show: Citroen shows off funky C-Aircross

C-this: The C-Aircross features a striking and quirky design that is becoming synonymous with Citroen.

C-Aircross Concept could preview new mid-size SUV for Citroen

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Citroen logo8 Feb 2017

By ROBBIE WALLIS

CITROEN has revealed its latest compact SUV concept featuring an unmistakeably Citroen design theme inside and out, ahead of its public debut at the Geneva motor show next month.

Called the C-Aircross, it carries design cues from the Aircross concept that was shown at the 2015 Shanghai motor show and if it makes it into production, could herald a new entrant into the compact SUV segment to sit above the C4 Cactus that was released last year.

The C-Aircross measures the same length as the C4 Cactus, but sits 10mm wider and 100mm higher, and draws its design inspiration from the updated C3 hatch that is due to land in Australia midway through this year.

It features the same thin, horizontal LED daytime running lights with a thin, two-stripe chrome grille intersecting the Citroen logo, and beefy main headlamps with red bezels.

Both the front and rear bumpers have a muscular, triple-slat design with glossy black finish, while the entire skirt of the car, including wheel arches, is adorned with a thick, ‘camouflage’ black finish.

The tail-lights feature a funky, 3D design with a split three-part design while red accents are present on the wheel hubs, C-pillar, roof rails, and one of the three padding bubbles along the doors, that are present on the C4 Cactus.

The roof features a panoramic sunroof and is coloured white to offset the black and blue-grey colours of the rest of the car, while the wheels have a unique design encompassing eight rectangular-shaped silver-finished segments.

Citroen’s quirky design continues in the four-seater cabin which is accessed through suicide doors, a feature that was also seen on the Aircross and Cxperience concepts.

Inside is a 12-inch digital touchscreen and multi-function colour head-up display, and makes minimal use of tactile buttons, featuring only four on the dashboard, four on the one-spoke steering wheel and a single selector knob for accessing the vehicle’s grip control function.

Rear vision is available through a pair of cameras in place of side mirrors, while a camera nestled in the roof spoiler allows rear vision, all through the 12-inch touchscreen which can be split in up to three different screens.

Simplicity is a big feature of the interior, with a single, unbroken dashboard, Alcantara-embossed seats with quilt effect, and cloth trim in grey and coral colours.

There is a large storage compartment that runs along the length of the dashboard, while the centre console contains a wireless phone charging compartment. There is even a spot on the back of the front seats for rear passengers to place a tablet.

The front-wheel-drive C-Aircross even includes some off-roading functionality with the grip control feature, which uses five different selectable modes – standard, sand, off-road, snow and ESP off – to adjust the differential and give the driver more versatile driving options.

There is no word on what drivetrains would be powering the C-Aircross should it come into production, however given its similar dimensions to the C4 Cactus, it could be offered with the same engines.

The most likely starter would be the 1.2-litre PureTech turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine which is used across a range of Peugeot and Citron vehicles, and has won the last two International Engine of the Year Awards for its class.

The other engine in the C4 Cactus, the 1.6-litre turbo-diesel four-cylinder, is a possibility due to the size increase of the C-Aircross.

More details will be revealed on the C-Aircross at its public debut at Geneva on March 7.

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