Wednesday, 10 August 2022

Citroen’s clever C4 Cactus has oodles of joie de vivre

THERE has been what some would consider the ultimate accolade — 2015 World Car Design of the Year

THERE has been what some would consider the ultimate accolade — 2015 World Car Design of the Year — and there has even been a “topless” version at Frankfurt Motor Show.

The Citroen C4 Cactus seems to know no boundaries in continuing to carve out a individual path to its success since its launch.

But is it all it’s cracked up to be? I tested the car a year ago and asked what was the point of it?

I didn’t know quite what to make of it. And I remarked that the odd “crash” panels attached to its sides were similar to those that you might find on a dodgem car at a fairground.

So recently I thought I would have another drive of the C4 Cactus.

Maybe the novelty had worn off a bit and, indeed, this latest venture was not as all-consuming.

However, I was acutely aware of the genius of this car and the continuing joy of driving it. Above all, I liked the way you can “throw the Cactus around” because of its seeming flexibility.

It is undoubtedly French and that’s what gives it its own particular air of eccentricity.

But it is on the money with new, simple technology, too. It is also a practical car — and French carmakers are a practical lot despite their quirky takes on design.

The UK is Citroen’s third biggest market globally, behind China and France. And Citroen has said that the Cactus’s onboard technology is a model for what the French carmaker should be concentrating on in future.

“The Cactus is the spirit of what we’re going to be doing,” a company spokeswoman has said.

So, on reflection, my initial reaction and assessment of the C4 Cactus stands true. It has loads of boot space and its “Airbump” panels that protect the car from everyday bumps and scrapes have got to be a winning idea.

The C4 Cactus’s technology is the big winner though — both for Citroen and apparently likewise for its customers.

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