3.2 out of 5 3.2
Parkers overall rating: 3.2 out of 5 3.2

A practical and well-priced choice, but rivals impress more

Citroën C3 Aircross SUV (17 on) - rated 3.2 out of 5
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At a glance

New price £17,320 - £23,080
Used price £8,145 - £23,070
Used monthly cost From £203 per month
Fuel Economy 39.1 - 67.2 mpg
Road tax cost £155
Insurance group 6 - 20 How much is it to insure?
New

PROS

  • Tempting price 
  • Well equipped 
  • Flexible rear seats on Shine Plus

CONS

  • Vague manual gearbox 
  • Choppy ride 
  • Mediocre infotainment system

Citroën C3 Aircross SUV rivals

Written by Alan Taylor-Jones on

Is the Citroen C3 Aircross any good?

These days it’s awfully tempting to eschew a fuddy-duddy hatchback for something taller and more interesting, something just like the Citroen C3 Aircross in fact. It won’t just tug at your heartstrings either – it’s also competitively priced, well equipped and is available with practical features that aren’t even available on some much larger and pricier SUVs.

In fact, the C3 Aircross is one of the cheapest models in the French firm’s range sitting above the C3 supermini and below the C4 hatch and much larger C5 Aircross SUV. But back to the C3 Aircross, it’s available with a choice of petrol or diesel engines and manual or automatic gearboxes. Four-wheel drive isn’t even on the options list, but then only a handful of small SUVs like the Suzuki Ignis and Vitara, Toyota Yaris Cross and Volkswagen T-Roc are available with it.

However, you’ll probably be more than happy with two driven wheels to save some cash. With that in mind the list of rivals opens up somewhat. There is of course the excellent Ford Puma, the Hyundai Kona, Kia Stonic, Renault Captur, Skoda Kamiq plus the Volkswagen T-Cross and T-Roc. In other words, there’s an awful lot of choice out there.

Read the Citroen C3 Aircross verdict

What’s it like inside?

You certainly couldn’t accuse the C3 Aircross of being dowdy inside, especially if you’ve got one of the interior packs that incorporate Citroen’s sofa-like Advanced Comfort seats. This also gets you an attractive dash insert and a leather steering wheel. Whichever model you pick, you’ll find many of your basic stereo and heater controls have been moved into the touchscreen. That means less buttons but more of a faff when changing temperature or radio station, for instance.

You sit higher than many small SUVs with lots of space up front and good head and legroom for rear seat passengers, too. There’s a reasonable spread of cubbies but disappointingly only the one USB port.

Although not the biggest in its class, the C3 Aircross is still one of the more generous. Most models range from 410 litres with the rear seats up or 1289 litres with them folded. Shine adds a two-level boot floor while Shine Plus adds a sliding rear bench so you can increase seat-up boot space at the expense of rear leg room.

Read more on the Citroen C3 Aircross interior

What’s it like to drive?

Two petrol and one diesel engine is available, with the punchiest petrol the only one available with an automatic gearbox. None of the engines get any kind of hybrid assistance unlike a number of rivals.

All engines are turbocharged and therefore feel pretty peppy from low in the rev range, although you won’t find any of them are particularly brisk when pushed hard. Many key rivals are available with more power if that’s your bag.

Like every Citroen, comfort is the focus so don’t expect pin-sharp handling. That said, the C3 Aircross doesn’t deal with potholes and sharp ridges particularly well, while the engines transmit a fair few vibrations through the controls when labouring from low revs.

Read more on how the Citroen C3 Aircross drives

What models and trims are available?

Impressively given the entry-level C-Series’ relatively low purchase price it still gets a reasonable amount of kit, more than other brand’s lowly models. That kit list includes climate control, 16in alloy wheels, LED headlights, rear parking sensors and a 7.0in touchscreen infotainment system with smartphone mirroring.

Mid-level Shine adds a handy two level boot floor to prioritise load capacity or convenience and a bigger 9.0in touchscreen with sat nav should you have a habit of getting lost. Crucially, there’s automatic emergency braking to help prevent you and your loved ones getting into a prang.

Top Shine Plus trim is predicted to be the most popular. It looks fancier from the outside thanks to bigger 17in wheels and a black roof, while inside you get comfier front seats, a nice big slab of piano black trim on the dash and a central driver’s armrest.

What else should I know?

The C3 Aircross went under the surgeon’s knife in 2021 to give it a more assertive front end, those Advanced Comfort seats and the usual range of new colours and wheels.

Unusually for an SUV of this size, a head-up display that projects your speed directly in front of you is on the options list in conjunction with an upgraded stereo.

Click through the next few pages to read everything you need to know about the Citroen C3 Aircross its practicality, how much it costs to run, what it's like to drive – and whether we recommend buying one.

Click through the next few pages to read everything you need to know about the Citroen C3 Aircross including its practicality, how much it costs to run, what it's like to drive – and whether we recommend buying one.

Citroën C3 Aircross SUV rivals