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Citroen's C2 VTR arrives early

The same but different: C2 is based on the same platform as C3 but looks rather different.

Brisbane show launch for Citroen’s hot hatch, but supplies are limited

23 Jan 2004

ABOUT 25 local Citroen fans will get the chance in February to be the first Aussie owners of the C2 VTR hot hatch, months ahead of the car’s general release here.

That’s because Citroen Australia has obtained a small batch of the cars to launch at the Brisbane motor show, starting February 6, and then to go on sale.

“Our original plan was to launch the Citroen C2 VTR as a full availability model in the third quarter of this year,” said general manager of Citroen Australia Miles Williams,.

“But a small number of C2 VTRs have become available and such is the demand from customers who have heard about the car from Europe we have brought a small number into the country prior to its full Australian launch.”

The C2 is the three-door close relation of the five-door C3 that went on sale in Australia last year. Although they share the same C1 platform, the two cars have no body panels in common.

Where the C3 is rounded and somewhat evocative of Citroen’s 2CV past, the C2 is edgier and quite angular, notably that rear side window.

The C2 is shorter and lower than the C3 and inside it offers four individual seats rather than a rear bench, as well as a sportier presentation.

Citroen Australia only intends to import the hotty version of the C2, although more mundane variants are available in Europe..

Priced at $22,990, the VTR will likely shape up against the likes of the Holden Barina SRi, the Peugeot 206 XR, newly-launched Renault Clio Dynamique, Suzuki Ignis Sport and the Toyota Echo Sportivo.

Performance for the C2 comes from a 1.6-litre 80kW/150Nm four-cylinder engine, providing a claimed top speed in excess of 190km/h and the ability to dispatch the dash to 100km/h in 10.9 seconds. Completing the drivetrain is SensoDrive, Citroen’s sequential manual gearbox.

Suspension is via a straight-forward MacPherson strut and transverse beam set-up, steering by variable assist rack and pinion, with all this connected to the road via 16-inch alloy wheels and 195/45 R16 tyres.

Standard safety equipment includes ABS brakes, four airbags (and a four-star rating in the NCAP awards), while standard comfort and convenience features include electric windows, electric mirrors, climate control, trip computer, height and reach adjustable steering, automatic rain-sensing wipers, automatic headlights and integrated digital audio.

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