I’ve had a few weeks to live with my new C4 Cool 1’6 HDi Hatch. I thought I would share my thoughts so far...
I was looking for a replacement vehicle for my ageing 406 HDi 110bhp estate –a car which had served me well, but with 150+ miles on the clock, and a main dealer unable to cure faults with it cutting out, the time had come to move on.
I provide my own vehicle for work use, and this changed my requirements somewhat. I looked at the market, mostly at the Volvo C30 & S40, Vauxhall Astra, Peugeot 307/8, Ford Focus, Audi A3 & BMW 118d. I also toyed with the idea of a slightly older 530d or C270 CDI.
Eventually the work use of my car pointed me towards new –for increased reliability. This would be my first new car. The work use also influenced the specification of the vehicle I required –further than the accepted basics of PAS, electric windows and ABS. Namely, I was looking for:
• Cruise Control • Climate Control • Centre Armrest (boon on long journeys) • Auto Wipers • Auto Lights • Comparable performance to the 406 • 50+ MPG • 600+ miles tank range
From the above list the Cool C4 offered all bar the Centre Armrest –which is something that can be added. A test drive confirmed that my requirements were met, the drive was better than the competition, and most of all cruising was really quiet.
I found the deal I negotiated with Advantage Citroen Grantham to be very beneficial –a good trade in on my car; Citroen’s 0% finance left me to invest my cash, and a pick up date less than 2 weeks ahead.
I have found myself being very gentle with the car whilst running in –I have ‘tested’ the performance of any other car I have had, but not so far with the C4.
I have added a few things to the car:
• Custom shaped mats • Ally sill plates • Centre armrest • Stainless exhaust trim • Transferred by head unit. • Nokia Bluetooth hands free kit
One of my pet hates has previously been wires running across the dash –to power Sat Nav & Hands free screen. I was determined to eliminate this, and have so far been able to utilise the interior light housing to discreetly locate the phone kit microphone, add a second power point behind the dash to power the sat nav, and hide all wires around the dash. I’m happy with the outcome.
I have found the 1.6 diesel engine to be extremely frugal –from 55 to 62 MPG, with a current average of 57.6. Tank range is usually around 650 – 700 miles, which normally means I have the time to find the best priced diesel.
The first inspection service was completed at 1100 miles, during which the drivers side rear door was adjusted, as I felt that required a firm shove to close properly. That was re-aligned and cured. I also noted some oil consumption, and this was topped up (free of charge!), and has remained at that level since.
I must say that driving the C4 is a pleasure –although I have effectively stepped down a car size, I find interior space ample (bar glove box space). I note some comments about restricted foot well space, which I think is correct. However, as I use the cruise function almost all the time, I find I place my feet/legs differently and therefore this is not an issue for me.
Auto Lights –are perfect for me.
Auto wipers –are very good, bar 2 flaws. The first is minor, in that they are occasionally confused (which happened in the 406). The second is a major design flaw, in that the configurations for RHD has not been completed, always leaving a line in front of the driver. Whilst discussing that issue, the glove box is too small, and the door lock/hazard light switch should be reversed. I also note comments about the handbrake, but I can live with that and other minor points.
Somewhat disappointing has been the news dealers want around £600 pounds to fit a tow bar. I see no good reason why the wiring is so complex, and therefore will be using good specialists as members have suggested.
I feel while the spec is impressive, I would have liked to see 2 or 3 separate trips available –one to be used for tank re-fills and one for journey measures. That would cost nothing bearing in mind the functions currently available.
There is one major problem I am as yet unsure how I will cure. I find the sun blinds to produce gaps each side letting light through. My first thought was to use a chavy sun strip on the top of the windscreen, but the wipers sweep right to the top, meaning this would lift. It would also make me look 12. If I can apply something to the inside I may.
I would also like to have adjustable front head rests (fore – aft). I presume the lack of this is showing my C4 price more than anything. If this can be pinched from a higher spec model please let me know.
One further tweek I have planned is to change the front and side indicators to chrome bulbs. I think this will really clean the lines.
All in all I am very happy, and looking forward to 3 years of happy motoring.
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