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Citroën C5 X plug-in hybrid 225 in the test: back to the old size?

Large, exclusive cars have a long tradition at Citroën. It may have been a bit forgotten at the moment, but just think of the unforgettable DS. Or also on CX and XM, up to the C6.
Well, the well-behaved middle-class C5 that was built last might not quite belong in this series of representative carriages, but even it fell asleep five years ago. With the C5 X, Citroën is now venturing back into the upper realms. With success?

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Citroën C5 X Plug-in Hybrid

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In any case, the new one was not allowed to become a classic notchback sedan – this position is occupied by the DS 9 of the now independent subsidiary DS. So Citroën is taking a slightly different approach with the C5 X. He should be a mixture of elegant sedan, practical station wagon and robust SUV be.
Citroën C5 X Plug-in Hybrid

Handsome Frenchman: The C5 X Hybrid is 4.81 meters long, it is a mixture of station wagon, sedan and SUV.

It is definitely an impressive sight, 4.81 meters long, 1.87 wide and slightly higher. In an interesting, independent design, with long overhangs, a flat structure and a long tail. If you like, you can certainly discover a certain proximity to the C6 – at the rounded rear, for example.

The C5 X comes in a crossover design

Citroën has also lovingly furnished the interior, with a massive dashboard for two displays – seven inches for the driver and twelve-inch touchscreen for multimedia (from Shine equipment) – plus all sorts of beautiful details, elaborate seams and a large selection of different materials . We counted seven plastics, but there could be more.

Citroën C5 X Plug-in Hybrid

Doesn’t quite fit: Tall pilots can’t pull the steering column out far enough – they have to sit with their legs heavily bent.


The softly upholstered, casual to comfortable seats are also a nice tradition. Without great lateral support, but for an extra charge (depending on the equipment from 800 euros) with eight different massage programs, some of which have romantic names, we recommend cat’s paws or butterflies. Unfortunately, the steering column cannot be pulled out far enough, so taller people have to sit with their legs bent.

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Four-cylinder, turbo + electric motor


And Citroën wouldn’t be Citroën if they didn’t include a few specialties. There are also certain traditions here, such as the single-spoke steering wheel, magnifying speedometer or operating satellite. In the C5 X, the two displays can now be configured in many ways, but the instruments for the driver are kept in an almost frighteningly simple graphic, which can only be meant ironically, and the twelve-inch touchscreen entangles you with its confused logic the abysses of an adventurous menu navigation. From which you can only find your way out with difficulty.

The voice control is difficult to understand

In contrast to other cars from the Stellantis group, there are only two shortcut keys, which are by no means helpful. Voice control urgently needs retraining, the volume control is on the wrong side on the passenger side, and the notchy slider for the gearbox is just impractical.

After all, there is a separate control panel for the air conditioning, and a good idea is the height adjustment for the head-up display housed in the mirror adjustment in the driver’s door.

In the back, it quickly gets tight over the crown

The space is then not quite as generous as might be expected given the dimensions of the Citroën. The C5 X is wide, as is customary in its class, and offers a lot of knee room, especially in the rear, but the headroom is not excessive.

Citroen C5 X Plug-in Hybrid 225

Somewhat surprisingly, the space available is not quite as ample as expected given the size of the vehicle, especially for the head.

For comparison: the front is missing two centimeters compared to an A4 and four compared to the Q5, in the rear half compared to the A4 and six compared to the Q5. Means: taller people have to duck their heads. Sure, that’s a consequence of the crossover design, the C5 X is not a flawless SUV, you have to live with the consequences.

The trunk is fine, swallows 485 to 1580 liters, the rear backrest can be split by remote unlocking. The payload is a modest 394 kilograms, the trailer load is also tight at 1.35 tons.

Citroën relies on the group solution for the hybrid

Technically, the C5 X uses the EMP2 platform on which the Opel Astra, Peugeot 308 and many other group models already drive. The drive consists of a 1.6-liter four-cylinder petrol engine with 180 hp, an electric motor with 110 hp, a 12.4 kWh battery and the Aisin eight-speed automatic, the system output is 224 hp.
Citroën C5 X Plug-in Hybrid

Typical plug-in: As long as the battery still has juice, things are going well in the C5 X. After that, only a 1.6 petrol engine remains for propulsion.

It can be charged with 3.7 kW as standard, for twice the charging speed (7.4 kW) an extra 400 euros is due. Citroën specifies the electric range as 60 kilometers, in the test we managed 47. The system is anything but unknown and does its job smoothly and fluently here as well.
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Spacious, headroom

but slightly limited

large trunk. payload/

Towing capacity low.

Smooth hybrid drive,

reacts something

retarded, rough gasoline engine.

Driving performance decent.

Drives calmly to comfortably

not particularly

agile. callous and

indifferent steering.

Touchscreen with tangled

Menus, TomTom sat nav with

rough graphics, voice control

inattentive.

large and relatively heavy

E-range only average,

consumption

economical with 4.6 liters.

Basically higher

Ride comfort with smoother

suspension and soft

armchairs. Overall quiet.

price reasonable,

Resale value unclear.

insurance ok

Only two years guarantee.


However, it always responds with a slight delay and also shows quite rough transitions under pressure. When the battery is empty, and it is quick in everyday life, the C5 X also shows the typical hybrid properties. Then all that remains for the drive is a more energetic, but always strained and relatively small petrol engine with 1.6 liters.

There is little agility in the C5 X

Hydropneumatics are no longer on board, but the plug-in hybrid has the adaptive advanced comfort active suspension, in which sensors probe the condition of the road surface and the suspension of each wheel can be adjusted individually.

This works well, the C5 X bounces wonderfully soft and wavy, especially on long waves. Yes, mon Dieu, Querfugen and the like he takes stiff and bumpy, especially at higher speeds.

Citroën C5 X Plug-in Hybrid

Anything but sporty: The steering of the C5 works smoothly and without feeling, the steering behavior is sluggish.

The steering is smooth, callous and indifferent – the Citroën draws in sluggishly, drives anything but agile. But you could also call it deeply relaxed and comfortable.

Price: It starts at 44,980 euros

You can remain relaxed in view of the fair prices. The C5 X plug-in is available in the very complete Feel Pack basic equipment from EUR 44,980, with the test car equipped with the luxurious Shine Pack from EUR 49,980. A nice tradition too.

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Citroën C5 X Hybrid on test


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