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Citroen’s small sedans not for Oz

Sedan fever: More than 20 million small sedans were sold worldwide last year, and Citroen is aiming for a slice of the pie with its new C-Elysse (pictured) and C4 L.

New C-Elysee and C4 L aimed at providing ailing Citroen with emerging market growth

21 Jun 2012

CITROEN is boosting its push into developing markets with two new small sedans, the C-Elysee and the C4 L – but both will be left-hand-drive only and therefore not on the cards for Australian release.

China was the target for Citroen’s original sedan version of the original C4, which was launched in 2006 and the struggling French company’s two new entries to the segment are a direct response to the global small sedan market having grown to more than 20 million units in 2011.

Citroen is also introducing its premium DS model line to China later this month, following its launch in Europe, Russia and Latin America.

To be built and sold in Spain, the C-Elysee will be also go on sale in Turkey, Central Europe and Algeria by the end of this year and is designed to survive rough roads with its “appropriate” suspension clearance and tyres, plus underbody protection and screwed-together – rather than clipped-together – components.

The C-Elysse’s 2650mm wheelbase – longer than that of a Volkswagen Jetta – is claimed to be the longest in the category, while its 506-litre boot is bigger than a Holden Commodore’s.

Described as “modern, spacious and robust”, the C-Elysse will come with a choice of two petrol engines and a diesel, including a new 54kW/110Nm ‘VTi 72’ petrol unit that Citroen says “combines rewarding performance with economical fuel consumption and durability”.

33 center imageFrom top: Citroen C Elysee and C4 L.

PSA Peugeot Citroen’ new VTI 72 engine is claimed to be 22 per cent more efficient than the 1.4-litre engine it replaces, delivering fuel consumption of five litres per 100 kilometres and CO2 emissions of 115 grams per kilometre in the C-Elysse.

Citroen says the car’s target market will see the C-Elysse as a long-term investment, so it has been designed with low running costs, to “stand up to intensive use” and an extended service life, with robust, washable interior materials.

Despite the ruggedness, Citroen has included luxuries like air-conditioning, Bluetooth connectivity, parking sensors, cruise control and MP3-compatible audio system, while touch-screen satellite navigation, a reversing camera and keyless entry and start are planned for later addition.

Depending on the country a maximum of four airbags is also available, alongside other safety equipment such as anti-lock brakes and electronic stability control.

The C4 L, a long-wheelbase sedan version of the C4 hatch that launched in Australia last October, is a product ofCitroen’s Shanghai style centre that will be produced in the Chinese city of Wuhan and at Kaluga in Russia from early next year.

Claimed to offer rear occupants “the pleasures of first-class travel”, with a 29-degree backrest, head restraints designed for “added comfort” and plenty of space owing to a wheelbase extended 100mm compared with the hatch, to 2710mm, while boot capacity is 440 litres (60 litres more than the hatch).

Extra soundproofing, air quality management with air ioniser and air-conditioning with three airflow settings are said to provide “total calm for all passengers”.

Luxury features include keyless entry and start, a heated windscreen, a reversing camera, automatic headlights and wipers, touch-screen satellite navigation, Bluetooth and USB connectivity and Xenon headlights.

Only petrol engines will be offered, with the familiar 1.6-litre turbocharged THP unit jointly developed with BMW offered in 112kW or 127kW tune depending on the market, joined by an entry-level 101kW naturally-aspirated 1.8-litre unit for China.

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