Parkers overall rating: 3.9 out of 5 3.9

Citroen C5 front tracking

  • Puretech petrol engine is punchy and refined
  • Diesels are economical and suited to auto transmission
  • PHEV makes a great case for itself

What engine options are there?

The Citroen C5 Aircross is available with a range of latest-generation Euro 6.2 engines and come in petrol-powered flavour: PureTech 130 S&S six-speed manual. There is also a diesel version: the BlueHDi 130 six-speed manual and BlueHDi 130 S&S EAT8. Citroen says that the new eight-speed auto is 7% more efficient than the outgoing six-speeder. There's also a plug-in hybrid – which gives you a considerable power hike to 225hp.

Petrol engines

Engine Power and torque
0-62mph time
Top speed
PureTech 130 manual 130hp, 230Nm 8.9secs 130mph
PureTech 130 EAT8 automatic 130hp, 230Nm 9.4secs 130mph

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The PureTech petrol is refined and punchy (0-62mph takes 8.9 seconds) and also suits the nature of the C5 Aircross. Again, not quick feeling on the road, but more than happy to roll along at motorway speeds without feeling at all stressed.

Diesel engine

Engine Power and torque
0-62mph time
Top speed
BlueHDi 110 manual 110hp, 250Nm 11.1secs 119mph
BlueHDi 130 EAT8 automatic 130hp, 300Nm 9.5secs 128mph

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Out of the pair, we'd forego the range and ultimate economy of the diesel version and head straight for the petrol because of its refinement and willing nature. Given how good the 1.2-litre PureTech petrol is, it's difficult to recommend the diesel, unless you're after the longest range possible.

Citroen C5 rear tracking

Hybrid engine

Engine Power and torque
0-62mph time
Top speed
Hybrid 225
225hp, 360Nm 8.2secs 129mph

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This one is very good indeed. Though the most expensive C5 Aircross to buy by some margin, it ought to hit back fairly soon with its lower running costs, provided it's driven in a way conducive to that and charged up regularly.

It's the fastest model in the range by a country mile, and though it's still no racing car there's a satisfying surge on acceleration as the petrol engine and electric motor work together. 

You can drive about on electric power for up to 40 miles if you're careful. You can do this either by forcing the car to stay in 'Electric' mode, or if you select 'Hybrid' then the C5 Aircross will shuffle its power source as it sees fit.

Handling

  • Definitely not a racing car
  • Rolls around in the corners
  • Comfort-biased

The C5 Aircross is not a sporty SUV, nor does it pretend to be one. Its 'Advanced Comfort' suspension does a great job of ironing out bumps, but the trade off is significant lean in the corners and light, uncommunicative steering.

A Volkswagen Touran is a much heavier and more reassuring steer, while a Ford Kuga is more enjoyable. Neither can hold a candle to the C5 Aircross for comfort on a long journey, though.