The new Citroen C3
The new Citroen C3

Citroen has revealed the first images of the next C3 supermini and they’re billing it as “a fresh, bold and colourful B-segment, 5-door supermini that delivers new levels of advanced comfort and personality to the sector”.

And just look at it: something of a radical new direction for the Citroen C3, with styling cues from the quirky C4 Cactus crossover.

Speaking about the new C3, Linda Jackson, Citroen CEO, said: “The New C3 has all the Citroën values and all the qualities to give the brand new impetus, which is especially important as the previous model accounted for almost one in five sales in Europe. A comfortable car with real personality, it is set to appeal to new customers looking for a modern car with character.”

With the DS brand now a separate entity and covering the premium end of the market, Citroen must find its place in the world again and bold design will be a part of that.

The pictures of the new C3 show a bold new compact car with plastic cladding around the wheel arches and Citroen’s innovative ‘Airbump’ technology on the sides. Customisation seems to feature highly in this new recipe for Citroen, and the launch photos show a bright, colourful two-tone finish for new C3.

Let’s state the obvious here: the new C3 looks nothing like anything else in the class (Fiesta, Corsa, Yaris, Fabia, Ibiza, Polo, 208, Mazda2 etc.).

So is this the right direction for Citroen? Will the new C3 be divisive, just too remote from what we’re used to seeing in this class to be a sales hit?

The new C3 weighs in heavy on the popular crossover look but is likely to be as easy to drive and efficient as any other small car, and critically competively priced too.

This is a bold move from Citroen but I think it just might be the right one. You see it’s pretty much widely accepted now that if you sling some plastic cladding on a car, it will sell because the world’s gone mad for SUVs, crossover and the ‘off-road-lite’ look. Expect more to follow.

Caroline Kidd