On two occasions, the car’s central locking failed to disengage from the inside.
Embarrassingly, I had to knock on the window to catch the attention of the passing strangers, mouthing: ‘Can you let me out of my car?’
I’ve had another problem too. There was a noisy rattle coming from inside the passenger door when the car reached 20mph. It got progressively faster and louder as I accelerated and was really annoying – so much so I’ve had the CD player cranked up high to drown it out.
The car was booked into the local dealer and while they managed to fix the rattle, they could not find anything wrong with the central locking. Let’s hope it was a two-off fault that won’t occur again.
My time as a permanent resident inside the C4 gave me an opportunity to consider the cabin carefully. Most lower-medium cars are fairly similar inside, in terms of where the instruments are sited and how they are operated.
Not with the C4 – the designers at Citroen have gone out of their way to break the mould with this one.
Climbing inside for the first time is rather like being a kid with a new toy – there’s so much to play with.
Citroen has placed the digital speedometer at the top of the centre console (see image) which is just where I like it.
It’s much easier to stick to the speed limit when there’s a huge number in view.
Then there’s the fixed hub steering wheel which Citroen has re-introduced (see image).
The buttons which control the CD player do not move as you turn the wheel which certainly makes changing tracks on the move much simpler. Like the previous tester, though, I’ve found it difficult to master without the aid of the car’s manual, which I eventually found hidden in a compartment under the passenger seat – you need a manual to tell you how to find the manual.
The C4 is proving to be fairly economical on the fuel front – I’m getting 39.3mpg. That figure is not bad in isolation but it is way off Citroen’s combined figure of 52.3mpg. And I can’t even blame it on my journey profile as most of my trips are a perfect balance of city and motorway driving.
Most mpg figures come a few miles below the manufacturer’s figure but a 13mpg difference is substantially lower. Hopefully things will improve over the next few months.
Model: Citroen C4 Coupe 2.0 HDi 16v VTS
Price (OTR): £18,095 (£20,220 as tested)
CO2 emissions (g/km): 142
Company car tax bill (2006) 22% tax-payer: £59 a month
Insurance group: 10E
Combined mpg: 52.3
Test mpg: 39.3
CAP Monitor residual value: £4,975/28%
HSBC contract hire rate: £368
Expenditure to date: Nil