14/05/2019
Sophie Knight, Consumer Editor, @sophieknightcars

Citroen C4 Cactus Hatchback Review

Citroen C4 Cactus Hatchback (18 on)

The Citroen C4 Cactus received a facelift in 2018 that saw the distinctive side Airbumps reduced in size dramatically, so this is a less quirky version of the previous.

You can customise your C4 Cactus with 31 different exterior combinations; opt for one of the four colour accent packs to add splashes of colour on the bodywork, and choose between five interior ambiances to change the colour of seat fabric, armrests and dashboard panels.

There’s a range of safety systems, including Active Safety Brake, traffic sign recognition, lane-departure warning, fatigue alert, driver attention alert and blindspot monitoring. Also included are the legendary headlights that follow the trajectory of the car’s steering wheel to increase vision when cornering at night.

Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are also available to allow you to connect your phone’s contacts and music library to the infotainment system.

New Progressive Hydraulic Cushions in the suspension give the C4 Cactus a great ride quality, and the seats are soft and supportive too - they’re made with high-density foam that’s 15mm thicker than the previous version of this car. It’s comfortable for driver and passengers, with more elbow and knee room than before.

The steering doesn’t give you much feedback, which might disappoint keen drivers, but the car handles well with plenty of grip.

In terms of practicality, the C4 Cactus has a boot capacity of 358 litres with the rear seats in place, increasing to 1,170 litres with the rear seats folded down - on a par with the Ford Focus and Vauxhall Astra. The back windows don’t open fully, but pop open like a two-door car, which might make it feel claustrophobic for some.

There are five engines to choose from: three petrols - PureTech 110 S&S 6-speed manual; PureTech 110 S&S EAT6 Auto; and PureTech 130 S&S 6-speed manual; and two diesels - BlueHDi 100 6-speed manual and the punchier BlueHDi 120 S&S EAT6 Auto.

Verdict

The Citroen C4 Cactus will prove to be less polarising than its predecessor, with less quirky styling than before, but better ride quality. It has lost some of its character, but it’s light and efficient, practical, and comfortable - more so than many of its rivals. Inside, the C4 Cactus is roomy and practical, with plenty of cubbyholes for family gear, although the infotainment system needlessly controls the climate system without any familiar knobs or buttons. It’s a real marmite car, and many people will choose a more traditionally functional rival than this interesting hatchback.

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