Where have you been hiding all this time

A bit of je ne sais qua, a bit of va va voom

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[We invited our colleague from Cycling Plus Malaysia to review the gorgeous Citroen C4 Picasso recently. And they did, together with MMA fighter/celebrity and all-around tough+nice guy Peter Davis. Have a read…]

If there is one car that has been overlooked by family oriented buyers, then that car would be the Citroen C4 Picasso. This is a strange phenomenon because in Europe, these cars are very well received. With its bags of practicality, affordability and stylish ques, it’s strange that it has been overlooked.

With prices starting from RM117k for this fabulous French car, this compact multi-purpose vehicle (MPV) can be considered to be excellently priced. We’re not going to touch much on its performance in this review because everyone knows that the 1.6-litre turbocharge unit in this vehicle is a tried and tested powerplant, but instead we shall look deeper into its practicality.

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With a horsepower output of 165ps and 240nm of torque to propel you forward, it has enough performance for pretty much any usage including spirited drives. As a family person who always loads up the car with kids, relatives and baggage, it has enough power to lumber all of these things around.

With captain style seats at the front and a whole lot of unique features such as a centre infotainment/instrument cluster placement, you’d definitely know you’re in a special car. If you’ve also entered the car and was wondering where the gear shifter is, it’s actually just above the steering wheel slightly to the right- you can’t miss it, it looks like a wand sticking out of the steering rack cover. The reason why they have located it there is because they wanted to make space for other things in between the driver and passenger seat. Instead of a gear lever, they have placed this wonderful storage compartment there. Slide the rolling type cover at the top open, and you get a really deep hollow space that can pretty much fit anything from a few big bottles of mineral water to a really big sized handbag. What’s even more impressive is the fact that you can even remove this compartment with ease to just have empty space there.

If you’re cyclists, this can be quite useful, as the empty space can be used to place your helmet, shoes, bottle and whatever else you need to have for a fun day out on a bike. If you’re not, then it could be a good place to put toys for your children. Speaking of cycling, most of the problems that cyclists have is the worry of leaving valuables in your car. Things such as your wallet, house keys or maybe an expensive watch can be found in all the normal vehicle hiding spots. Not in the Picasso however because underneath the carpet in the rear, there are two secret compartments on the driver said as well as passenger side. This is particularly useful because not only can it serve as a good hiding spot, it can also be used as an extra storage space.

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The rear seats in the car are pretty impressive too. As much as they are comfortable and cushion your derriere for the longest of rides, they can also fold individually which Citroen are very proud of. Although this doesn’t really come off as such a big deal, trust us when we say that it will come in handy.

Let’s say you’ve been to Ikea and you’ve bought yourself a piece of “need to be assembled furniture”. Most of the times you will need to fold down your seats to transport it back home. But what if you had three passengers with you? For most cars, you would need to fold down seats which are usually folded in two halves. This will squish your two passengers together as they will probably sit on the half that has two seats.

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On the C4 however, each seat can be folded down individually. All you need to do is fold down the middle one, and slide that long bit of furniture part in the middle. This still gives you passenger their own individual space. This feature came in handy when we went cycling recently, as we just stored the bike in the middle of the two rear seats. Did we mention that the rear seats can also slide forward and backwards just like the front ones to make more room for more boot space or leg space?

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But if all of that doesn’t captivate you, we’re pretty sure the exterior will. Just look at it, it’s gorgeous from every angle-something different from the rest of the other cars which kind of all look similar. This we must say is one of the best parts of the C4 Picasso. For once, a car manufacturer has made a MPV look sexy, and although this is subjective, there is no denying that from stylish point of view, this is one good looking car.

[Stock images of the Citroen C4 Picasso]

TopGear
Author: TopGear
TopGear is the world’s best-selling motoring magazine. The Malaysian edition holds similar status, as acknowledged by the industry.

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