Parkers overall rating: 2.5 out of 5 2.5

The C3 Pluriel comes with a choice of 1.4-litre and 1.6-litre petrol engines and a 1.4-litre HDi diesel. The smaller petrol isn’t quick, but it is adequate enough for around town, while the diesel is slow to get going, but is a strong performer when it does, making it well suited to motorway work and great for cruising. The 1.6, with a 0-60mph time of 12.2 seconds and a top speed of 117mph, is the quickest engine in the line-up, but is available only with a SensoDrive semi-automatic gearbox – with paddles behind the steering wheel.

SensoDrive is one of the better gearboxes of this type, with smooth, well-timed changes. However in fully automatic mode it’s a bit jerky – often searching for gears and making changes at unexpected times.

When the roof bars are in place, the drive is adequate but there’s considerable body flexing once they are removed and it lacks composure at speed. As you’d expect from a Citroën, the C3 Pluriel rides well over smooth surfaces, but it feels a bit rough on A and B roads and doesn’t feel surefooted in tight bends. Due to the feather-light power steering and small body, city driving is a doddle, as the small Citroen can squeeze and weave through traffic, while parking is made even easier when the roof is down and the arches are removed.

However the lack of feel in the steering means driving the Citroen is rarely an enjoyable or memorable experience.