Citroen C3 variants
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Read our Citroen C3 review

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Finance representative example (PCP)

Total cash price £9,399. Borrowing £7,519 with a £1,880 deposit at a representative APR of 12.9%.

49 monthly payments
Fixed interest rate
Total amount payable
Cost of credit
Optional final payment
Annual mileage limit
6000 miles

Citroen C3 buying guide

Citroen offers the C3 with several different engine and trim specifications. We’ll walk you through each choice here so you can pick the one that suits you.

What Citroen C3 trim levels are there?

The C3 range kicks off with Touch trim, available on pre-facelift C3s. This includes cruise control, lane-departure warning and a stereo system with DAB radio, Bluetooth and an aux audio input.

Post-facelift entry-level models come in Sense trim. Sense is equipped similarly to pre-facelift Touch cars but gains air conditioning and a touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Mid-range pre-facelift C3s are available in Feel trim. Compared to Touch, Feel adds alloy wheels, a contrast-coloured roof, air conditioning, and infotainment with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Mid-range post-facelift cars are called C Series. This trim is essentially equivalent to pre-facelift Feel cars, with the addition of rear parking sensors and what Citroen calls the ‘C Series styling pack’, which adds contrast colours to various interior and exterior styling details.

Flair is the top-of-the-range trim for C3 models. This was renamed to Shine in 2022. This brings posh touches such as leather trim for the steering wheel and gear shifter, rubber Airbumps on the exterior, a reversing camera and, on post-facelift models, Advanced Comfort seats, which Citroen says are inspired by the furniture industry.

Citroen C3 interior and technology

The C3’s interior is one of its many likeable features. The rounded squares make a return across many styling details, helping it feel a little more interesting than some more conservative rivals. Citroen has also trimmed back many of the buttons in the cabin, helping lend it a minimalist ambience.

That does mean many functions have now moved to Citroen’s infotainment system, which is not one of its best features. All the functions you’d expect are present and correct with DAB radio and Bluetooth on all models, and a touchscreen interface fitted to the majority of cars. However, the screen can be sluggish to respond and the interface isn’t as intuitive as many rivals. It’s also annoying that Citroen has relegated the climate controls to the screen, so they can’t be easily adjusted on the fly without taking your eyes off the road.

Passenger space in the C3 is acceptable, with enough head, leg and elbow room for four adults to fit without complaints, but five will find it cramped for anything other than very short hops. There’s not a lot of room in the rear to manoeuvre wriggling kids or bulky child seats into position, so parents might want to look at a larger car, such as the C3 Aircross. Boot space is, similarly, plenty for day-to-day use but will struggle if you need to take a holiday’s worth of luggage.

Citroen C3 engine range explained

Citroen C3 1.2 PureTech 82 petrol

This is the C3’s entry-level engine – a non-turbo 1.2-litre petrol three-cylinder making 82hp. The 0-62mph sprint takes a leisurely 12.5 seconds, meaning this engine will feel fine around town but will have to work quite hard to reach overtaking speeds on the motorway.

Citroen C3 1.2 PureTech 110 petrol

Petrol C3 buyers also have the option to step up to the PureTech 110. This uses the same 1.2-litre engine but with a turbocharger to make 110hp. This drops the 0-62mph time to less than 10 seconds, helping this model feel much more relaxed on the motorway.

Citroen C3 1.5 BlueHDi 75 diesel

If you’re a higher-milage driver, you might want to consider one of the C3’s diesel engines. The BlueHDi 75 model was only offered on pre-facelift C3s and made – you guessed it – 75hp. While the 0-62mph run is completed in a positively sedate 13.7 seconds, economy can stretch as high as 81mpg if you’re careful with your right foot.

Citroen C3 1.5 BlueHDi 100 diesel

The BlueHDi 100 is the same 1.5-litre diesel engine as the 75 model, but with power turned up to 100hp. This is the only diesel engine offered on the C3 after the 2021 facelift. The extra power drops the 0-62mph sprint to much more bearable 10.6 seconds, while average economy of up to 76mpg is a small penalty to pay compared to the BlueHDi 75 version.

Citroen C3 FAQs

There’s only one version of the C3 – a five-door hatchback. Citroen also makes the C3 Aircross SUV, which uses most of the same parts and engines but comes in a slightly taller SUV body style.

If you’re shopping for nearly new Citroen C3s, you’re likely to find pre and post-facelift versions on sale. Pre-facelift cars were first launched in 2016 and carried on until the end of 2020. Post-facelift models arrived in 2021 and are still on sale. Visual differences between the two are very mild with the only noticeable change being the chrome front grille, which is integrated into the upper headlights only on pre-facelift models, while it splits between the lower and upper headlight units on post-facelift models, with the lower lights themselves being made more angular.

The C3 is slightly less than four metres long. That means it’s very slightly shorter than most of its key rivals including the Ford Fiesta, Peugeot 208 and Renault Clio. Those compact dimensions make the C3 easy to handle in the city, with tight parking spots and bumper-to-bumper traffic presenting little challenge.

Its modest footprint does, however, mean the C3 doesn’t have loads of interior space, so family buyers might want to look at a larger car. Nevertheless, four adults will sit comfortably in the interior, and five can just about squeeze in for quick trips. Boot space is enough for the weekly shop but you might struggle to fit much beyond one large suitcase.

Both petrol and diesel engines are offered for the C3, but the overwhelming majority are powered by petrol, which better suits the car’s urban and suburban stomping ground. The entry-level petrol engine isn't the best choice for big motorway miles as it feels a little underpowered at higher speeds but is plenty if you mainly drive in urban areas.

The Citroen C3 is cool, comfortable and connected. It's a great car for buyers who do a lot of local journeys but also head further afield, and for those who need a small car that's easy to park.

The reliability of the Citroen C3 could be better, but the vast majority of cars won't give their owners any headaches whatsoever. If problems do occur, they're more likely to be related to the infotainment system than the major engine components. For absolute peace of mind, consider taking out an extended warranty when you buy your car.

No, the Citroen C3 isn't able to tow a caravan. Its towing capacity is only 600kg for turbocharged cars with manual gearboxes, and less if you choose the PureTech 83 petrol engine or a car with an automatic gearbox.

No, the Citroen C3 isn't available with a sunroof, and neither is the C3 Aircross. However, the smaller C1 is available with a folding fabric roof, which could satisfy your open-air desires.