Primary Navigation Mobile

There is a newer version of this car Read the latest Citroën C4 Hatchback review here

Citroën C4 Hatchback engines, drive and performance

2011 - 2018 (change model)
Performance rating: 3.5 out of 53.5

Written by Chris Ebbs Published: 6 June 2019 Updated: 6 June 2019

Although it’s no racing car, there are many levels of Citroen C4 performance.

There’s a choice of three petrol engines – co-developed with BMW – and three diesel engines.

Petrol engines

The entry level petrol option is a 1.4-litre VTi with 95bhp. This is followed by the 1.6 VTi option with 120bhp that will cover the 0-62mph benchmark in 10.8 seconds and is available with a five-speed manual gearbox or four-speed automatic.

Topping the petrol range is a smooth 1.6-litre THP version with 155bhp that will cover the 62mph sprint in 8.7 seconds and comes with a six-speed automatic gearbox.

Diesel options

On the diesel front is a 1.6HDi with 90bhp, followed by the 1.6-litre HDi version with 110bhp. The 110bhp option is also available as the e-HDi, a kind of diesel hybrid that not only drops emissions down to 109g/km, but also comes with a very good start/stop system that is responsive and unlike other similar systems works on a number of occasions – not just the one time before restarting.

Sitting atop the diesel engine range is a 2.0HDi with 150bhp, which is a strong performer with plenty of pulling power and decent acceleration. reaching 62mph in 8.6 seconds.

Lower-powered petrol models get a five-speed manual gearbox with the top diesel choice getting a six-speed manual, that while not being smooth or precise, offers long gear ratios making it ideal for cruising on the motorway.

It would be wise to avoid the EGS auto ‘box. Gear changes are incredibly jerky, even in manual mode, and it quickly becomes an infuriating interference that’s incredibly tedious. The only way to rectify this is to take your foot off the accelerator for every gear change.

2015 engines

Following a mid-life facelift, the C4 now has new Euro 6-compliant engines added to the range including a new 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol engine with two power outputs; 108bhp and 128bhp.

Available with either a five-speed manual, six-speed manual or the brand’s latest 6-speed auto-adaptive Automatic. Fuel economy for the lower-powered option ranges from 56.5mpg to 60.1mpg dependant on the tyres fitted to the car and CO2 emissions fall as low as 110g/km.

We drove the higher powered option in the South of France and were impressed with how well the engine performed on the motorway as well as around city streets. With 230Nm of torque available the car can accelerate from 0—62mph in 10.8 seconds.

The automatic gearbox is also a vast improvement over the previous EGS box and worked well with the engine creating far smoother gear changes.

Unfortunately, this seems to be an area that is still disappointing in the C4. The soft suspension is comfortable enough on straight roads and will quite happily soak up any bumps.

However, this set-up does mean that any tight bends and roundabouts make the car lurch from side to side and there is a wallowiness on major cambers.

The steering is a little vague and could also do with being weightier at lower speed and offers little feedback when tackling tighter bends.

Get the car up to motorway speeds and things feel much better with a nice weight to the steering giving you plenty of confidence.