Lightweight, hi-tech hatch could become first Citroen hybrid

Citroën is considering a production car based on the eco-friendly C-Cactus concept first seen at the 2007 Frankfurt motor show.

Citroën managing director Gilles Michel described the C-Cactus as a “radically new” approach to producing green cars, which would offer “better mobility, consumption and respect of the environment”.

The C-Cactus gets its green credentials by using various methods to reduce costs and weight, such as repeating body panels around the car and using fewer components in the cabin.For these reasons, the C-Cactus has also become the ideal car to take Citroën’s new HYdrive diesel-electric hybrid technology, which has been confirmed for production by 2011 and is claimed to offer nearly 100mpg economy.

Should the C-Cactus get HYdrive, it would adopt a front-drive layout rather than the four-wheel drive that was showcased recently on the Hypnos concept.

A number of other powerplants could make it into the C-Cactus, including a sub-100g/km 1.0-litre, three-cylinder engine that has already been confirmed for production. 

Our Verdict

Citroën C4
The Citroën C4 range comprises three diesel and three petrol engines, plus three trim levels

It's an admirable family hatchback, but there is an abundance of superior rivals that makes the C4 feel a little outclassed

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Driven this week

Citroën is also considering a pure electric model, which would offer a range of almost 100 miles and a top speed of 70mph.

The C-Cactus would slot into the Citroën range as an affordable four-seat hatchback offering low spec levels, benchmark green credentials and a focus on around-town practicality and style.

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Our Verdict

Citroën C4
The Citroën C4 range comprises three diesel and three petrol engines, plus three trim levels

It's an admirable family hatchback, but there is an abundance of superior rivals that makes the C4 feel a little outclassed

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week