Just hours after finding its way online through the leaky European press, the all-new 2017 Citroen C3 has now been unveiled.
The new 2017 C3 hatch joins the likes of the Picasso twins and the still fresh C4 Cactus in playing to Citroen’s new-generation styling themes, including a three-tier lighting design up front and a soft curvy design through the body.
At the front, there is Citroen’s slender LED daytime lights that merge with the familiar chevron badge, sitting above large driving lights and, on the models shown here, a pair of deep-framed fog lights.
The new C3‘s bold and upright front-end reaches back to a long A-pillar design and a glasshouse designed for a low-slung sporting appearance (40mm lower than before).
As today’s earlier leaks revealed, Citroen’s “Airbump” strips will appear on the new C3 – but the look will not be a permanent feature. As the image above shows, buyers will also have the option of simple body-coloured panels in their place.
Those first appeared in production on the C4 Cactus, but while the little SUV’s pre-emptive band-aids are intended to help protect against shopping trolley bingles, the C3’s compact bubble tape appear even more gimmicky.
As a marketing play, however, they will likely appeal to those seeking something a little different – and Citroen has always excelled on that front.
Inside, the C3 takes on a more classically inspired appearance, with a long and slender satin-silver frame wrapping a compact dash face, matched to a variety of optional fabric accents. Retro low-set door strap handles are also featured.
A 7.0-inch touchscreen sits proud in the centre of the dash and, according to Citroen’s press materials, will be fitted as standard equipment across the range. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto (the latter from early 2017) will be featured, along with MirrorLink.
The C3 will also feature Citroen’s ConnectedCam system, which sees a HD camera positioned behind the rear-view mirror. The camera is connected to the infotainment system and is intended to let the driver shoot video and take photos of the view ahead. This stands out as one of the first factory-integrated ‘dashcam’ systems.
A reversing camera is featured – although unclear if it is standard equipment – and hill-start assist is also on-board. Other safety technologies include lane departure warning, blind-spot monitoring and driver attention alert.
A 2.54-metre wheelbase lies beneath, and rear storage capacity is listed at 300 litres. A seats-down figure has not been offered.
The new C3 is built on an architecture known as Platform A, related but not identical to the PF1 platform that underpins the DS3 and the Peugeot 208, among others. (PF1, for its part, has now been succeeded by the EMP1 structure, intended for more premium offerings.)
Citroen parent PSA has revealed little about the new C3’s underpinnings, although it describes a strong new “H”-shaped crossbar positioned beneath the seats with the aim of providing greater impact strength.
Providing power in the C3 will be a trio of three-cylinder ‘PureTech’ petrol engines and two diesel engines.
Depending on the variant, the new hatch will be offered with a manual transmission (likely a six-speeder) or an optional EAT6 six-speed automatic.
The general manager for the Citroen brand in Australia, Kai Bruesewitz, confirmed today that while a local launch is not yet locked in, the company is confident.
“Negotiations are well underway and we are very keen to reintroduce the C3 to Australia if we can deliver a package that meets the needs of Australian customers and complements the overall local brand direction.
“In the likely case that those negotiations are successful, we anticipate launching the vehicle in Australia mid-2017 with specifications and pricing confirmed closer to this time,” said Bruesewitz.
Watch for more on the new C3 to come in the months ahead.
Click the photos tab above for many more images of the new C3