The interior is constructed of reasonable quality materials, but you do have an impression of it being built to a budget. Soft-touch surfaces are on the top of the dash, but others including the door-tops are all hard.
Comfort and Refinement
Tall roomy mini-MPVs run the risk of being echoey buzz-boxes, but there is no sign of that here. There is surprisingly little wind noise for such an upright design. You do hear the engine at work, but it is not intrusive and does not mar your cabin conversation. Road rumble is pretty subdued too, and the overall experience of using this vehicle is very agreeable.
With the C3 Picasso’s recent mid-life makeover, the cabin has been spruced up and given new trim in the top models. There is an optional full black leather upholstery available to posh up the interior The car’s A pillars are set a bit further back than in most cars. This, and the high roof, tall side windows and lowishc waistline, make the overall glass area feel huge. A particularly nice feature is that impressive panoramic windscreen that swoops right up overhead. There are also front quarter windows that pull in extra light, at the same time as widening your forward view. There is an optional full-length panoramic sunroof, available for £550, which makes the cabin even more bright, light and airy.
The interior is constructed of reasonable quality materials, but you do have an impression of it being built to a budget. Soft-touch surfaces are on the top of the dash, but others including the door-tops are all hard. The layout is tidy and nicely planned, giving an overall impression that is functional and smart-looking. The big digital speedo is not to all tastes, so check it out if this is a car you are considering. We like the positioning of the satnav screen, and although it is a bit on the small side, it has a display that is particularly clear and easy to read. Parents will like the pull-down second rear-view mirror that can be angled to view children in the back seat.
Safety and Security
The C3 Picasso is a 5 star car under the Euro NCAP crash test programme. The car comes with six airbags: front, side and curtain, and the cruise control has a speed limiter. The standard ABS has electronic brakeforce distribution, and there is electronic stability programme for anti-skid protection. The car’s hazard warning lights activate automatically in an emergency. Rear parking sensors with an audible warning are fitted to top-sped versions.
The car comes with a six-speaker RDS stereo radio that is MP3 compatible and includes a CD player. It also has Bluetooth connectivity and Aux-in socket. The system is good quality and has a nice tone. The system can be operated from steering-wheel-mounted controls that are standard across the C3 Picasso range. Available optionally is Citroen’s newly upgraded eMyWay satnav system. Extra functionality over the previous kit has recently been added, but without extra cost. It can be specified as part of a package that includes a reversing camera and rear parking sensors.
- Ford B-Max
- Fiat 500L
- Honda Jazz
- Nissan Note
- Vauxhall Meriva
What We Liked
- Distinctive styling
- Friendly to drive
- Very light and airy cabin
- Clever ‘child watch’ extra rear-view mirror
- Very good forward view with wrap-around effect of windscreen and quarter-lights
- Better rearward vision than in many modern cars
- Full-length sunroof scoops in loads of extra lights
- Standard electric windows and steering wheel audio controls
What We Disliked
- Some cabin surfaces look and feel a bit budget
- Satnav screen quite small
- Digital speed not to all tastes
What We Would Like To See
- Fine weather overhead through that huge glass roof
The C3 Picasso is a tall, roomy, light and airy mini-MPV that is practical for family life and friendly to drive. Citroen’s mid-life overhaul for the car for the 2013 model year has given it a new look with front end tweaks and a raft of minor improvements to keep it competitive against newer rivals. With the mid-life tweaks it has undergone, the C3 Picasso has a fresher face and a range of detail improvements that should keep it on pace with the opposition. Worth considering if you want a practical car with versatile space in a reasonably small package.6 March 2013
Citroen C3 Picasso Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Citroen C3 Picasso Exclusvie HDi|
|Body Type||5-door MPV|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||11.2 Seconds|
|Top Speed||114 mph|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||68.9 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||5-stars|
|Warranty||3 Years / 60,000 Miles|
|Price (when tested on the 06/03/13)||£17,655|