Parkers overall rating: 3 out of 5 3.0

The Coupe’s engine line-up has four petrols – 1.4-litre, 1.6-litre and a 2.0-litre in two different outputs in the VTR and VTS. Plus three diesels – a 1.6 HDi with either 92bhp or 110bhp along with a 2.0 HDi. The entry level 1.4i 16v has 90bhp, while the 1.6-litre has 110bhp. The sporty VTR and VTS models use separate versions of the same 2.0-litre engine, with 138bhp and 180bhp respectively.

The performance VTS feels a little frantic and offers enough power to please, but with a 0-62mph time of 8.3 seconds, it falls into the warm, rather than hot hatch category. There’s a good choice of diesels too – the 1.6 HDi is available with 92bhp or 110bhp, and although the lesser-powered version is a little sluggish, it is capable of 64mpg. The 110bhp is noticeably punchier and offers plenty of mid-range power, which makes for easy overtaking, while economy is still impressive with an average of 63mpg.

The 138bhp 2.0HDi is a laid-back when it comes to motorway cruising, but offers the sort of power that makes the most of quiet backroads. Summer 2006 saw the introduction of an electronic gearbox system. It’s called EGS (Electronic Gearbox System) and as well as a standard auto setting, allows the driver to make manual changes. The changes are, on the whole, smooth, though it can be a slow to respond when pushing on.

The standard gearbox is a disappointing and slack five-speed which lacks feel, but the 2.0HDi VTS gets a six-speed transmission which is far better.

Although the C4 Coupe lacks the sure-footed feel of the Focus, it is better than the Peugeot 307, with which it shares many parts. Unfortunately the overly light steering robs the car of any feel and it’s not very involving from behind the wheel. It corners fairly neatly, although there’s noticeable body roll, but there’s decent grip and responsive brakes.

Ride comfort – a Citroën trademark – is excellent, with all but the biggest potholes ably soaked up. The sporty VTS has a stiffer set-up which means some ride quality is sacrificed for handling, but it feels sharper and more focussed through bends.