Plug-in hybrid option for Citroen C5 Aircross SUV

  • PHEV efficiency for Citroen’s large crossover
  • Low CO2 makes it attractive for company car drivers
  • Available to order now from £35,340

Citroen has become the latest manufacturer to kick-off its electrification offensive with the introduction of plug-in hybrid (PHEV) versions of its larger C5 Aircross SUV range.

In doing so, the Citroen has caught up with its sister cars – the DS 7 Crossback, Peugeot 3008 and Vauxhall Grandland X, all of which are already available in PHEV form.

Although this latest C5 Aircross represents a new wave of plug-in Citroens, it’s not the French brand’s first electric car – sales of the Mitsubishi -based C-Zero concluded in 2019.

How efficient is the C5 Aircross PHEV?

Plug-in hybrids can work very efficiently providing you’re able to charge the battery up frequently – Citroen claims its 13.2kWh lithium-ion cells can offer a real-world range of 34 miles of pure electric driving under the more realistic WLTP testing method.

2020 Citroen C5 Aircross Plug-in Hybrid dashboard

Similarly, fuel efficiency is quoted at a claimed 168mpg, but that’s assuming that some petrol is used after the battery’s reserves are depleted. Theoretically, if your commute is short, you could run one and not use any petrol at all.

Where PHEVs are particularly attractive is in terms of company car tax. With emissions quoted at just 32g/km of CO2, the Benefit-in-Kind (BIK) rate for user choosers is just 12% for the 2020-21 tax year.

Does that mean it’s slow?

Although Citroen hasn’t yet confirmed performance figures, it’s no slouch with a combined power output of 225hp from a 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine and an electric motor.

All power is directed to the front wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox that Citroen’s titled e-EAT8.

While its sister cars are also available in 300hp PHEV form with all-wheel drive, Citroen has no plans to offer this combination in the C5 Aircross as it jars with the brand values of comfort and serenity. In short, sportiness and Citroen aren’t to be associated for the foreseeable…

How much does the C5 Aircross PHEV cost?

Two versions of the PHEV C5 Aircross – or to give it its full title, Plug-in Hybrid e-EAT8 PureTech 180 + 80kW electric motor (not kidding, either) – are available: the plush Flair from £35,340 and the plusher Flair Plus at £36,815.

2020 Citroen C5 Aircross Plug-in Hybrid instruments

Both versions have specific hybrid badging, a specific compartment under the boot floor for the charging cable, a specific digital instrument binnacle, thicker front door windows to reduce outside noise and an optional Anodised Blue exterior pack to highlight your eco credentials.

Further reinforcing that supple bias Citroen is focusing on, the suspension has been upgraded to a more sophisticated arrangement that is claimed to make it even more relaxing to drive.

What this means for you

We like the C5 Aircross because Citroen’s made a solid effort to do something different with it, primarily with that comfort focus.

Factor-in the potentially very low running costs and the heightened levels of comfort and this could be the pick of the range.

We’ll know more when we test the car in the coming weeks, so keep this page bookmarked for the results.

Further reading:

>> Find out more about the Citroen C5 Aircross with our extensive preview

>> Fancy something plusher? See if the DS 7 Crossback is the SUV for you

>> Is Vauxhall’s Grandland X the SUV of choice? Dive into our full review

White 2020 Citroen C5 Aircross Plug-in Hybrid rear three-quarter plugged in