As many may have realised by now, Citroen is back in the country and they've been doing a steady job under the leadership of parent company Stellantis. The latest to come out of the French firm is the refreshed Citroen C5 Aircross, the brand's halo model. It's a subtle SUV by design - meaning it doesn't stand on stilts attempting to be the tallest in the room and this counts in its favour. It's built for the family and this is who Citroen had in mind when they created the C5 Aircross.

What's new in the Citroen C5?

Citroen has done enough for it to be a significant facelift. With most updated versions you can hardly tell the new and old vehicles apart. It's been touched up from front to rear, with most of the resources going towards enhancing its face, which now appears more imposing than before. Sharper lines span the C5's body complimenting the new daytime running LED lights, giving the Citroen a more chiselled appearance overall. Everything sits on a new set of 18-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels, the French have never been short of masterful designers and even the alloys receive special attention.

 

Inside the cabin you'll find a new 10-inch touchscreen tablet built into the dash, giving you access to many of the Citroen's functions and settings. In line with the digital theme, the C5's instrument cluster is a 12.3-inch screen with customisation to display the necessary information when you need it. The brand says it has installed the latest generation of Citroen Advanced Comfort seats into this updated C5 Aircross, however, our backsides couldn't perceive any difference between these seats and any other modern vehicle's.

Our dislikes

We weren't too chuffed to once again discover the use of a tablet-style screen for most of the vehicle's functions and settings. Manufacturers seem to believe that this is the way to go but it isn't. At the very least volume and air conditioner dials should still be present. The rest of the functions can be coded into a tablet. Staying with the electronic theme, the C5 Aircross's gear selector, 'park' and handbrake are all electronic and in many ways, these functions are a mere button built into the centre console. It's difficult to get used to not having a physical gear selector to automatically reach for and select park, reverse or drive. Aside from these electronic advancements, there isn't much to fault in the C5 Aircross, which has a lot more going for it than not.

 

What we liked

We appreciated the panoramic glass sliding roof on the Shine variant, it brings a lot of ambient light into the cabin giving the space an airy feel. Rear passengers can enjoy the ride in comfort with reclining and sliding seats that can be split three ways. Further back, we were impressed by the C5's generous 720-litre boot with an electronic tailgate. Any family car worth its salt should always have a commodious luggage compartment.

Arguably what we liked the most about the Citroen C5 Aircross, which is something most will appreciate, was its smooth and refined ride and its responsive 1.6l turbo petrol engine. The combination gives you the feeling of floating along as the Citroen works its way around town. Longer journeys are aided by adaptive cruise control and lane keep assist.

How much is the Citroen C5 Aircross?

1.6 Feel 121 kW – R633 900

1.6 Shine 121 kW – R683 900

 

Words: Gugu Masuku