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Just build it: Citroen unveils CXperience concept

Published: 30 August 2016

► Citroen CXPerience concept revealed
► Plug-in hybrid with 37-mile electric range
► Claimed total power output of 280bhp

Don’t get your hopes up: this, reputedly, is not a preview of the next-gen Citroen C4 or C5. Alas, this new Citroen CXperience Concept – a large hatchback with a plug-in hybrid powertrain – is mooted to simply show off ‘the brand’s new aesthetic codes’.

Still, we live in hope. After all, Citroen rolled the oddball C4 Cactus into production – and the electric DS E-Tense concept appears threateningly close to being a production car of some sort. 

It looks pretty slick.

Linda Jackson, Citroen’s CEO, says: ‘The Citroen CXperience challenges convention to express a new vision of executive hatchbacks. It also fits in perfectly with the ambitions of the Citroën Advanced Comfort programme. The CXperience Concept illustrates the brand's capacity to deploy its Be Different, Feel Good promise in this segment.’

2016 Citroen CXperience Concept

Outside of Citroen pillaging its old model names box for inspiration – with Mehari, DS and now CX being pulled back into action – those of you with a keener eye will spot some other nods to the brand’s past. Check out the steering wheel, for example – it’s a single-spoke affair, a la Citroens of old.

Advanced Comfort programme? What’s that?

Everyone used to hold Citroen in high regards for its ride comfort, an association which the company dubbed ‘Citroen Comfort’. The ‘Advanced Comfort’ programme is an evolution of that concept, taking into account more modern facets like connectivity. The idea is that, as well as important elements like ride comfort, Citroen will focus on other aspects that contribute to a sense of well-being in the car – like its interior quality, ambiance and ease of use.

2016 Citroen CXperience concept

The company’s not letting the CXperience’s suspension system rely purely on a set of conventional coil springs and dampers, though – it will feature a hydraulic cushioning system, integrated into the dampers, that’s designed to filter and smooth the suspension’s actions.

It also features an air purifier, twin sunroofs and memory-foam seats, all of which are designed to improve ‘on-board well-being.’

What’s it powered by?

The CXperience is a petrol-electric plug-in hybrid. There aren’t any technical details regarding the Citroen’s petrol engine yet, but it’s mooted to put out between 148 and 197bhp – which alone would grant adequate performance.

However, the electric motor can deliver an additional 79bhp, granting a more muscular total of almost 280bhp. On all-electric power the Citroen can reputedly travel a total of 37 miles, but when you’re on the motorway the two power sources will be blended to optimise the car’s economy.

The CXperience’s drive battery is slung under the floor, helping retain interior and boot space. Charging the 3kW battery is claimed to take anywhere from 2.5 hours to 4.5 hours depending on charging system.

2016 Citroen CXperience concept

The petrol engine’s coupled to an eight-speed automatic, the output from which travels through the electric motor to the driven wheels. Judging by the pictures, which show a flat floor, we’d assume that it’s the front wheels that are powered – but there is some suggestion that the rear axle may also feature an electric motor. No doubt more technical details will be made available closer to the reveal.

Citroen says: ‘This new plug-in hybrid solution allows drivers and passengers to enjoy a new driving experience whereby they can travel from city centres to the most isolated areas without restriction, receiving exceptional dynamic performances as a direct result of the additional energy from the electric motor, while also respecting the environment.’ 

Is there any innovative tech onboard?

You mean you’re not amazed by cameras replacing the door mirrors any more? Egads. Fortunately, Citroen’s done just a bit more than that. Key tech includes a customisable 19-inch touchscreen media system, tablets for front and rear occupants, a 360-degree camera system and an on-board dash camera. 

2016 Citroen CXperience concept

When can I find out more?

The new Citroen CXperience will be on display at the 2016 Paris motor show, which opens to the public on 1 October. 

Read more 2016 Paris motor show news here

By Lewis Kingston

Formerly of this parish. Inveterate car buyer and seller; currently owner of a '68 Charger project car

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