Close on 10,000 Citroens hit the road with 51-plates on the first day of the month, and the manufacturer is basking in further achievements as the fastest growing fleet manufacturer in the UK this year, the fastest growing diesel manufacturer in the UK, and the fastest growing new car sales company in Europe.
So no wonder Citroen is optimistic about the prospects for its pretty new C3 supermini. Unveiled in the flesh for the first time in Frankfurt, the five-door car will sit between the Saxo and Xsara.
The tall and round C3 has a distinct, curvy design without any of the outlandish features of the radical Picasso. Inside, its unusual height and raised seats offer easy access and a roomy interior, that an optional full length sunroof enhances.
Neat features include a rear parking sensor, an automatic boot lock as soon as the vehicle moves, and a black panel to extinguish data on the instrument cluster (except the speedo) to reduce distractions during night drives.
The car sits in a new market segment for Citroen, and will feature the first fruits of the diesel engine collaboration between PSA Peugeot Citroen and Ford.
The C3 will be available with 1.4 HDi and 1.4 HDi 16V units, producing 70bhp and 92bhp respectively, and in the UK will be joined by 1.4- and 1.6-litre petrol engines.
Sharing diesel technology with Ford, which launched the new Fiesta at Frankfurt, could be seen as giving away the family jewels, but Citroen chief Claude Satinet insists the co-operation makes good sense.