The new Citroen Grand C4 Picasso has been launched in the UK. A seven-seat compact MPV, it claims to be the most practical, versatile and elegant model in its class. Bold claims! But with more interior space and better levels of efficiency than any other model of its size, their claims just might hold water.
New features include a refreshed, uncluttered loft-inspired interior, a 7” Touch Drive interface combined with a HD 12” panoramic screen, an all-new 360° Vision system and optimised power steering and suspension for a finer balance between road comfort and road-holding.
Ultimately, whether or not this is the best seven-seat MPV is surely a matter of taste. But what we can say with a degree of certainty is that there has never been a more appealing version of the Citroen Grand C4 Picasso on UK roads.
Let's take a closer look.
Though the length of the vehicle remains relatively unchanged, the wheelbase of the new Citroen Grand C4 Picasso is 11cm longer than the previous generation. This might not sound like much on paper, but at 2.84m it now lays claim to the longest wheelbase in its class, which makes a huge difference in terms of interior dimensions and passenger comfort.
The new, uncluttered interior of the Citroen Grand C4 Picasso has been designed to create the feel of a high-end loft conversion. Fitted as standard is a panoramic windscreen, which serves to bathe the cabin in calming natural light. For an even lighter and airier feel, add the optional large glass roof. At night, white LED lighting create a cosy and intimate interior ambience, whilst materials such as satin, chrome and gloss add that stylish and refined finishing touch.
Passenger comfort is paramount. No other seven-seat MPV gives so much legroom to rows two and three, with row two housing three independent tilting seats. And whilst row three often appears to have been added as an afterthought, rearmost passengers in the new Citroen Grand C4 Picasso get dedicated air vents (a first for the segment) and unprecedented easy access.
The entirety of rows two and three can fold flat, creating between 632 and 2,181 litres of rear storage space. You might as well be driving a small yet meticulously appointed van.
Yet all this would count for precisely nothing if the new Citroen Grand C4 Picasso rattled and hummed along the road like a decrepit wooden wagon pulled by a sad arthritic mule. But of course, that's not the case. Rather, every effort has been made to ensure that handling is easier and more manoeuvrable than ever before.
Despite growing in proportions, the overall weight of the vehicle has been reduced by at least 100kg, with a lower centre of gravity and new design elements such as vertically positioned shock absorbers in place to create a fantastic balance between comfort and road-holding.
The electric power steering system minimises vibrations from the road to the steering column, making every ride considerably smoother and quieter. Meanwhile, advanced functions such as 360° Vision and Park Assist add a considerable peace of mind when navigating tight and unpredictable urban environments.
This reduced weight also serves to enhance performance and efficiency. The new Citroen Grand C4 Picasso has cut its fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by an average of 30g/km compared to its predecessor, with some models even delivering sub-100g/km CO2 emissions.
The crown of the extensive engine range is the e-HDi 90 Airdream. Fitted with the 6-speed Efficient Tronic Gearbox (ETG6), it's capable of 74.3mpg, with CO2 emissions as low as 98g/km. No MPV has ever been so efficient.
So with more space, more comfort, superior technology and the potential for the lowest possible running costs for a car of this size and capability, there might well be some truth to the claims that the new Citroen Grand C4 Picasso is the most practical, versatile and elegant model in its class.