Now a new hold-all model is championing the French company's cause and tempting fleet buyers with one of the biggest load platforms in its class.
But there's more to the C5 Estate than just space.
Despite being able to swallow an enormous cargo, this car's rear deck is an object lesson in practical packaging.
The latest member of our long term fleet bristles with features that have been designed to make life easier for the motorist who needs to carry large amounts of gear.
For a start, the car's clever hydro-pneumatic suspension system simply refuses to sag, irrespective of how much weight goes on to the massive load platform it supports.
Then there's a handy opening window on the big rear door, a floor mat that is washable when turned over to cope with 'dirty' cargo and a load restraint net with two roof locking locations that allow it to be secured whether the rear seat backrest is in the upright position or folded.
As a party piece, a little button on the inside of the rear door pillar allows the car to be lowered or raised so the platform can be matched to the best height for loading.
At the press launch of the car, Citroen executives raised a few eyebrows by claiming the C5 to be unique in providing maximum load space without compromising comfort or driving refinement, but after making a few long trips, we are inclined to agree.
Thanks to Hydractive 3, the super-smooth ride characteristics help mop up the miles and roadholding seems surprisingly nimble, considering the bulk of the bodywork. But perhaps the biggest initial surprise comes with the level of performance.
With such a large car to haul, we expected the 2.0-litre heavy oil motor to be a disappointment. It isn't — but more of that in a future issue.
And on the fuel economy front, there are certainly no complaints.
Over 48 miles per gallon for such a large car is no mean achievement.