Building on the commercial success of its compact MPV range, recently bolstered by the C4 Picasso and Grand C4 Picasso, Citroën is continuing to develop models with spacious interiors by combining elegance and driving pleasure in its top-end C8 MPV.
Depending on the country, from the start of 2008 the C8 will be restyled inside and out, making its decidedly modern lines even more dynamic and enhancing the luxury of the cabin.
At the same time the C8 range will be extended, in some countries, with a new HDi diesel engine developing 173 bhp DIN (125 kW or 170 bhp EC), complete with a particulate filter (DPFS) and mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox. In the course of 2008, the engine will also be available in some countries with a 6-speed automatic gearbox.
The new engine completes a range comprising a 2-litre 143 bhp 16V petrol injection engine available with a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic gearbox, and two diesel engines, the HDi 120 and the HDI 138 DPFS, both with a 6-speed manual gearbox.
Already available on the C5 and C6, the HDi 173 DPFS is the flagship of Citroën’s range of 4-cylinder HDi engines. A number of innovative features (double parallel sequential turbo and new combustion and injection systems) provide outstanding driving pleasure by offering maximum torque of 273 lb/ft at a low 1,500 rpm. To complete the upgrade, Citroën has made changes to the running gear and brakes.
Finally, in addition to the new engine launch, new comfort equipment and driving aids have been added to the already richly equipped C8 range.
Updated, prestige styling
With its powerful and dynamic styling, the C8 stands out at first glance. The MPV features style changes that strengthen its top-range positioning and consolidate Citroën’s position in the large MPV segment.
The C8 front end features new, enlarged chevron motifs in the centre of tauter radiator grill lines, featuring small chrome bars stressing the vehicle’s statue-like elegance. The grille rim, with its more pronounced lines, provides the perfect junction with the bonnet and the headlights, taking perceived quality to new heights. The top-range appearance of the MPV is also reflected in new chrome door handles and painted body protectors with a chrome strip at front and rear.
As though echoing the front end, the rear chevrons are more imposing than before, clearly denoting that the MPV forms an integral part of the Citroën range. Finally, the reversing lights are translucent.
A new interior that says "top of the range"
The restyling of the C8 cockpit is in keeping with the exterior style changes. They stress the MPV’s top-of-the-range position and ensure a refined onboard atmosphere.
All the door wood trims, the steering wheel, the carpet, the mats and the upper dashboard arch are now black. The main contact parts (stowage compartments in front doors, glove box handle, air vent thumbwheels…) have been treated in soft paint for a more pleasant feel. Lastly, the top-range positioning of the C8 cabin is underlined by the use of a brilliant chrome finish on the door handles, gear lever and air vent cursors.
Roomy and versatile interior
All the changes made inside the C8 stress the space and comfort on board. With a 2.82 m wheelbase, the C8 meets the requirements of top-range MPV clients who want a truly spacious interior.
The design of the seats is a perfect illustration of the model’s versatility and stresses that all passengers are treated equally in terms of individualised comfort. The C8 can seat up to eight people on three rows of identical seats. Furthermore, the highly modular approach to seating means the luggage compartment can vary in size from 225 litres to 2,948 litres depending on the needs of the moment. This large volume, the width of at least 1,153 mm between the wheel arches, and the interior height are extremely practical.
Lastly, the cabin is particularly welcoming thanks to the electric sliding side doors which ensure easy boarding in all circumstances, even if the MPV is parked close to a wall or between two other vehicles.
An engine with many advantages
Supple and discreet
The HDi 173 DPFS engine brings excellent driving pleasure thanks to the double parallel sequential turbo, a genuine innovation on a 4-cylinder diesel engine. The double parallel sequential turbo ensures both ample torque at low engine speeds and instant response when the turbo is activated. The maximum torque of 273 lb/ft is reached at a low 1,500 rpm, and remains constant right up to 2,700 rpm, at the top of the most frequently used engine speed range.
The double parallel sequential turbo involves the use of two fixed-geometry turbo compressors identical in size. At low engine speeds, i.e. below 2,700 rpm, only one of the turbos operates. Its low inertia ensures that the engine is perfectly responsive. Above 2,700 rpm, it is bolstered by the second turbo to deliver the air intake needed over the full range of higher engine speeds.
A transitory phase, as the second turbo starts to rotate but is not yet connected to the admission, makes for smoother activation. The whole system is entirely controlled by the engine computer.
The use of two balancer shafts helps enhance the sense of driving pleasure by limiting engine vibration.
The HDi 173 DPFS engine is used in conjunction with a 6-speed manual gearbox that provides outstanding driving pleasure, ensuring extremely precise and rapid gear changes. The 6-speed gearbox is also compact, no bigger than a 5-speed unit, and results in no increase in turning circle.
In the course of 2008, this engine will also be made available in some countries with a 6-speed automatic gearbox.
Strict control of consumption and emissions
This engine also features a new ECCS combustion chamber (Extreme Conventional Combustion System) which optimises the air/fuel mix, and a third generation common rail whose pressure has been pushed up to 1,800 bars to ensure a finer fuel spray. This combination cuts emissions by around 30% compared with the previous generation 2.2-litre HDi while at the same time enhancing performance levels.
The new engine, which is systematically fitted with a particulate filter (DPFS), thus delivers combined-cycle consumption of 7.2 litres per 100 km and CO2 emissions of 191 g/km.
Upgraded running gear
The C8’s running gear has been adapted to match the more dynamic powertrain performance.
Fitted in all versions with pseudo-MacPherson strut suspension at the front and a torsion beam axle at the rear, the C8 has excellent directional stability and steering precision.
In its HDi 173 DPFS version, the C8 is also equipped with special rear shock absorbers and a special anti-roll bar, while the stiffness of the front struts has been stepped up. The overall result of these enhancements is the best possible trade-off between roadholding and comfort for active safety and top-level driving pleasure.
To adapt the braking components to the C8’s enhanced performance levels, they have been resized: the ventilated 310 x 32 mm discs at the front have been enlarged, and are linked to dual-piston calipers. This configuration provides the C8 with precise, fade-free and easy-to-gauge braking.
Concentrated technology for exemplary well-being and safety
Intelligent driving assistance
The inclusion of the HDi 173 DPFS engine in the C8 range is accompanied by the arrival of complementary equipment to ensure the highest possible level of well-being.
The largest Citroën MPV is now equipped, in its Exclusive version, with front and rear parking aid systems.
Sensors in the front and rear bumpers detect obstacles near the vehicle. Audio signals played through the various loudspeakers, and a representation of the parking manoeuvre on the multi-function dashboard screen, show the precise location of any obstacles in the detection zone.
The C8 is equipped as standard on the Exclusive version with the new NaviDrive telematics system. Complete with a large colour screen, this system combines, together with the features of an integrated GSM phone, audio functions (radio, MP3-compatible CD player, hard disk storage up to 30 gigabytes, 10 of which are available in the Jukebox) and GPS navigation. The NaviDrive system has also been designed to offer complementary features: Citroën Emergency, Citroën Assistance, and Citroën On Line. Combined with the GPS and telephone functions, Citroën Emergency enables, depending on the country concerned, the determination of the vehicle’s location in the event of accident or driver incapacity, and access to call centre services.
The C8 can also be fitted with a Bluetooth hands-free kit, depending on the trim level, enabling the driver to easily use a cell phone while focusing complete attention on the driving situation.
Comprehensive safety equipment
To provide the driver with all the information and assistance needed for peace of mind, the C8 is equipped with a speed limiter, combined with the standard equipment cruise control depending on the country, and a low-tyre pressure detection system (available in some equipment packs) which identifies the wheel concerned.
Furthermore, to ensure maximum safety for occupants, all C8 models are equipped with a series of active safety systems, such as ABS, ASR, ESP, EBA and automatic warning light activation. And to ensure exemplary protection for all passengers, 6 airbags are available as standard equipment.
The effectiveness of all this equipment, combined with the car’s outstanding structural resistance, is reflected in the 5-star rating awarded to the C8 in the EuroNCAP test.
By seamlessly matching the C8’s features with the most powerful four-cylinder HDi engine in the Citroën range, the C8 HDi 173 DPFS offers outstanding motoring comfort, unique styling, remarkable spaciousness and equipment that make it one of the best in its class.