What strikes you first – just as it does in its bigger C4 Picasso brother – is the airiness of the cabin created by a glasshouse unrivalled by any car in its class.

There is an outstanding amount of room here, enough for Citroën to claim that the C3 Picasso is the most spacious car in its sector, rivalling some in the class above. It withstands scrutiny, too: rear head and leg room are exceptional, while the boot is not only large but also ideally proportioned and has a moveable floor that can be deployed either for maximum space or to provide sizeable secure underfloor storage.

The C3 joins the rare breed of cars in which the front passenger seat folds flat (albeit in Exclusive spec only). Sounds boring until you start shopping at Ikea.

There aren’t many gimmicks in here – you’ll need to buy the C3 Picasso in Platinum trim if you want airline-style tables in the back or a fully folding front passenger seat – but the fundamentals are all there in the form of a sliding and reclining rear bench that also folds flat into the floor at the tug of a single handle.

As we mentioned before, there are only two trims to choose from - Edition and Platinum. The entry-level Edition models get a panoramic windscreen, front foglights, plenty of chrome trim, 16in alloy wheels and roof bars as standard, while inside there is air conditioning, cruise control, all-round electric windows, rear parking sensors and Bluetooth connectivity.

Upgrade to the range-topping Platinum model luxuries such as automatic wipers and lights, dual-zone climate control, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, 17in alloy wheels and a panoramic sunroof are all included in the package. There are plenty of options that can be added with the option of adding sat nav and USB connectivity for an additional £800. If a rear-view camera or a leather interior appeal then be prepared to part with over £2400 for the privilege, providing you buy the range-topping Platinum model.

If Citroën has done well on this quantitative scale, the quality is even better. The cabin has a premium feel you’ll not find on any other car in this class. The dash materials not only look good, which you might expect, but they feel good too, which you certainly would not expect for this money. Soft-touch fabrics, attractive graining and expensive-looking finishers all add to this sense of value.

But there is a problem here. The C3 Picasso isn’t as comfortable as it should be on a long journey. Despite a reach and rake-adjustable wheel, the driving position is flawed because you cannot get the wheel low enough, the pedals are offset to the right and, for tall drivers, there’s a distinct lack of rearward seat travel. The flat and unsupportive rear bench seat could be more comfortable too.

As for the ergonomic environment, we’d always prefer information to be presented direct to the driver’s line of vision, but the slim, three-element central display on this C3 works well. So does the switchgear, which, despite not having the clearest of labelling, is at least easy to find and use.

Save money on your car insurance

Compare quotesCompare insurance quotes

Top 5 MPVs

Find an Autocar car review

Explore the Citroen range

Driven this week

  • Vauxhall Viva Rocks
    The Vauxhall Viva Rocks will sit at the top of the city car range
    First Drive
    15 December 2017
    Vauxhall's city car gets an urban SUV makeover in a bid to court younger buyers. Is that enough to turn it into a Suzuki Ignis beater?
  • Volkswagen T-Roc 2.0 TSI
    First Drive
    15 December 2017
    Do 187bhp and 4Motion all-wheel drive make the current top-spec T-Roc exciting to drive?
  • Nissan Micra 1.0
    First Drive
    15 December 2017
    Nissan plugs the gap in its Micra range with a naturally aspirated 1.0-litre petrol engine, but is it good enough to unseat the Ford Fiesta, Seat Ibiza and Volkswagen Polo equivalents?
  • Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
    First Drive
    15 December 2017
    The super-saloon version of Alfa’s long-awaited M3 rival has already wowed our road testers, but what’s it like to live with?
  • Lexus LS 500h
    First Drive
    14 December 2017
    New flagship saloon from Lexus provides a luxury interior to rival the best but comes up short due to its hybrid powertrain