Used Citroën C5 Aircross Review (2017-present) MK1

Independent review by Peter Hayward from Driving Force

4-minute read

Citroen C5 Aircross Front

Citroën C5 Aircross (2017-present)

Combining head-turning style with a brilliantly engaging drive, the Citroën C5 Aircross is a mid-sized SUV that stands out from the rest

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  • Very comfortable
  • Quirky styling
  • Well-equipped
  • Steering lacks feel at times
  • Slightly cramped in the rear
  • No seven seat option
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What's the Citroën C5 Aircross like?

What a superb and distinctive car the Citroën C5 Aircross is. It does almost everything brilliantly, and the quality of the ride puts most other urban SUVs to shame.

Citroën has really found a setup that the majority of owners will like, because people want their car to be comfortable as well as capable and safe around the corners.

Driving Experience

The comfort puts cars two classes up to shame. The C5 simply rolls over everything in its path, giving the best ride you can get for the money.
Peter Hayward

The worst of surfaces with ripples, potholes, and undulations are despatched as if they were snooker table smooth.

And it treats the ubiquitous speed hump with complete disdain, aided by beautifully shaped seats that also have the right side support, leaving occupants totally unruffled.

With such supple suspension, you'd expect more lean in the corners, but not so. It tracks through them with consummate ease and holds the road brilliantly.

The roadholding is marvellous and very, very safe, but the steering is a little lacking in feel at times – the only thing to let it down.

The C5 is very relaxing to drive, partly because of that brilliant ride, but also because there's little wind noise, and no road noise to speak of even on tar and chipping surfaces.


Some might say that there is not much choice of engines, but five should be enough for most people, and they all come with start/stop.

Petrol power starts with the already well-known 1.2-litre 3-cylinder turbo driving the front wheels – as they all do - through a 6-speed manual or 8-speed automatic gearbox.

It boasts an excellent 130bhp and the manual dispatches the 0 to 60mph sprint in 11.3 seconds while being capable of 51mpg.

Next comes a 1.6-litre 180bhp turbo that has the automatic gearbox as standard. It gets to the benchmark in 8.2 seconds and is only slightly less economical at 49mpg

Finally, on the petrol list comes a petrol/electric plug-in hybrid. This has the 1.6-litre petrol unit plus an electric motor, giving a total of 221bhp.

It reaches 60mph in 8.7 seconds, and can cover around 30 miles at up to 70mph on electric power alone. Economy is rated at 222mpg, but in general use it’s likely to be a lot less, and the battery takes about two hours to charge at home on a fast charger.

Diesel offerings are a 1.5-litre BlueHDi with 130bhp and a 2.0-litre with standard auto box that has 177bhp.

The 1.5-litre reaches 60mph from rest in 11.4 seconds and can do 66mpg, while the 2.0-litre takes the sprint in 9.4 and can do 56mpg.


There are no cheaper entry models in the range and mid-range Flair spec comes with an alarm, sat nav, traction control, part leather upholstery, and loads of airbags.

Seat adjustment is excellent and also standard are heated electric mirrors, parking sensors, cruise control, and audio remote on the steering wheel.

Flair Plus has a driver adjustable digital instrument binnacle, parking camera, sat nav, DAB radio with Bluetooth, leather upholstery, LED headlights, Grip Control for best traction in slippery conditions, hill descent assist, hill-start assist, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and wireless smartphone charging.

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If comfort is high up on your list of needs, you'll struggle to find a car as practical as the Citroën C5 Aircross. Quirky styling inside and out is what really makes the C5 Aircross stand out from the rest, and the abundance of technology on offer ensures you'll never be in for a dull drive.