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Citroen Reviews

Citroën was created in 1919 as the maker of worthy, solid but ultimately quite dull cars. And then came the revolutionary Traction Avant in 1934 with its front-wheel drive and modern styling. That established Citroën as a forward-thinking carmaker, which was capable of building mould-breaking cars, such as the supremely clever 2CV and the Hydropneumatically-suspended DS, the Maserati-engined SM, the futuristic CX and the novel GS.

A takeover by Peugeot in 1975 initially killed off some of Citroën’s quirkiness – although 1982’s BX and '89's XM was in the marque's best mad traditions – but individuality and daring have returned again in recent years… thanks to the ill-fated C6 and subsequent DS-line of cars to supplement that company's more mundane products.

Good: Tin Snail is a economy motoring icon, comfortable, long-legged, limpet-like grip and a roll-back canvas roof
Bad: Lack of outright performance takes a little getting used to
Good: Amazing ride quality, space ship looks, advanced specification which in some ways is still contemporary
Bad: Horrible when structural corrosion takes hold
Good: Like a DS but with even more room inside
Bad: Generally led a harder life, so more rare, and surviving examples more likely to suffer from problems
Good: Effortlessly stylish four-seater cabriolet
Bad: Genuine ones cost a fortune, so watch out for fakes
Good: Additional performance and room over a 2CV, fastback and estate versions very practical
Bad: Frankly bizarre styling of reverse-rake Ami 6
Good: More power makes the DS even more irresistible
Bad: The complexity of hydraulics, and hidden structural corrosion
Good: Like a 2CV, but bigger, a little plusher and with a more useful hatchback
Bad: Not as cool as the 2CV, and therefore harder to justify its failings
Good: Simple basic fun
Bad: Not so fun in Scotland. In the winter
Good: Supreme high-speed cruiser, off-beat Maserati V6, superior steering and brakes, idiosyncratic styling, superbly comfortable
Bad: Not a DIY proposition, engine rebuild costs, tough to restore
Good: Soft ride and self levelling suspension, excellent steering, visibility and brakes
Bad: Not as economical as it should be, flat-four engine is very vocal, rare and hard to find parts for
Good: Otherworldly ride comfort, effortless long distance cruising, roomy interior, head-turning looks
Bad: Complex mechanics for the uninitiated, ultra-sensitive controls take some getting used to, structural rust can be a show-stopper in terms of difficulty fixing
Good: Roomy, comfortable, characterful flat-twin, interesting dashboard, sporting models go well, Decapotable version is a cheap fun convertible
Bad: Rust, poor parts and specialist support, almost extinct
Good: Magic carpet ride, easier to maintain and service than you might think, all models go well for their engine sizes due to low weight
Bad: Some parts getting hard to find, plastic panels and a rust-free body can hide corrosion nightmares underneath, still considered a banger by those who don' get them
Good: Fast and fine handling, effectively a five-door Peugeot 205GTI
Bad: Rare as hen's teeth, flimsy, rusty and ugly
Good: Great performance and roadholding without too much loss of ride quality
Bad: Rare, parts availability, hidden corrosion issues, engines still in demand from 205GTI owners
Good: We're struggling with this one
Bad: Interesting twin-pots were never sold in the UK
Good: Light and efficient, brilliant diesels, all are economical
Bad: Lightweight build can be mistaken for shoddy quality
Good: Brilliant to drive, huge amounts of fun, great handling and fast with a mere 85bhp
Bad: Fragile and far from reliable
Good: Roomy, comfortable and clever
Bad: They don't respond well to abuse and neglect
Good: Dirt cheap to buy now, superb blend of assured handling and comfortable ride, Volcane and Furio versions are brilliant hot hatchbacks
Bad: Limited luggage space, mechanical problems persist, can be hard to resell
Good: Cheap to buy, height-adjustable suspension delivers a smooth ride and safe handling, good rear legroom, distinctive looks.
Bad: Care needed to find a good one these days, a wide range of potential reliability problems.
 

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