Testing has begun of the all-new Citroën C3 WRC; it's based on a new road car that is expected to launch at the Paris motor show
Jim Holder
19 April 2016

The Citroën C3 WRC World Rally Championship car has begun testing, giving the best indication yet of how the production version of the firm’s best-selling supermini will look when an all-new road car goes on sale later this year.

The new C3 has been revealed - take a look here

The C3 WRC was shaken down by Britain's Kris Meeke in Château-de-Lastours and Fontjoncouse, France, and will undergo testing throughout 2016 ahead of running in the 2017 World Rally Championship. Next season’s cars are being built to new rules, and will be the fastest ever seen in the WRC.

A close look at the official pictures of the rally car confirm that the new Citroën C3 road car will take significant styling cues from the Citroën C4 Cactus, particularly around the front-end design, with the rally team’s disguise scarcely disguising the lines around the upper body, bumper and headlamps. The C4 Cactus has been a significant sales success for Citroën since launching in 2014, with its quirky styling and distinctive look polarising audiences but winning more buyers.

Of the WRC test, Meeke said: “The car looks fantastic and much more sexy with the new FIA regulations. I am pretty sure that the spectacle will be amazing for all the fans. I think we are entering an exciting new era of the FIA World Rally Championship.”

The new Citroen C3 road car is expected to be unveiled at this year’s Paris motor show. Insiders have already confirmed that the car will feature Citroën’s distinctive Airbump design on the side, as well as major on comfort, space and technology rather than sportiness, a route taken by many of Citroën’s rivals. Powertrains are expected to come from updated versions of the existing line-up of petrols and diesels.

Our Verdict

Citroën C3

The Citroën C3 is a competent and interesting supermini, but it doesn’t hit any high notes

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Comments
2

19 April 2016
If the new C3 will "major on comfort, space and technology rather than sportiness" it slightly begs the question why Citroen go rallying in the first place, a sport which hardly promotes comfort and space!

19 April 2016
Is a strong history of winning rallies and being world champions important to brand image and sales? It hasn't exactly worked well for the winninigest marque in rallying, Lancia, has it? Or is it that Fiat really is stupid? Only one of those statements can be true.

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