New Citroen is

comfort king

Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, front
Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, front, action
Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, side, action
Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, rear, action
Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, front, static
Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, side, static
Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, rear, static
Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, interior
Citroen C5 Aircross, 2019, centre console

IT'S a good job I'm pretty placid behind the wheel most of the time.

On a short drive through town recently I saw five people on their mobiles - two of who were quite obviously texting.

What complete and utter idiots.It's bad enough talking on the thing, but texting while you're driving? Where are your brains?

I and many other drivers are now sending dashcam photos of people using their phones to the police and, judging by my local magistrate's court, many are leading to prosecutions, points on licences and heavy fines.

Don't do it.

That day I was driving Citroen's latest C5 Aircross and what a superb and distinctive car it is. It goes straight to the top of the two wheel drive SUV class as far as I'm concerned.

It does pretty much everything brilliantly but the quality of the ride puts many other urban soft roaders to shame.

It simply rolls over absolutely everything in its path, giving the best all round comfort that I have come across in years.

The worst of surfaces with ripples, potholes and undulations are despatched as if they were snooker table smooth.

And it treats the ubiquitous speed hump with complete disdain, leaving occupants totally unruffled.

The comfort is aided by beautifully shaped seats that also have the right side support built in.

With such supple suspension, I was expecting more lean in the corners, but not so. It tracks through them with consummate ease and holds the road brilliantly.

On a switchback section I drive occasionally, with a number of right-left-right bends and very little traffic, the road holding was marvellous and very, very safe.

But the steering is a little lacking in feel at times - the only thing to let it down.

The car I drove had the Citroen/Peugeot 1.2 turbo petrol engine driving through an easy-changing six-speed gearbox.

This drivetrain too was hugely impressive, very smooth and quiet except for a slight thrumfrom the engine at very low speeds.

This is because it's a three cylinder unit and the noise is rarely intrusive. It pulls beautifully from fairly low revs, giving very good performance for its size and, despite the size of the car, managed a real 40mpg over the time I had it.

Acceleration in sixth gear is good enough for most manoeuvres on the motorway, where the C5 can also easily keep up with general traffic speeds.

And it's hugely relaxing to drive, partly because of the excellent comfort, but also because there is little wind noise and no road noise to speak of even on tar and chipping surfaces.

There are no cheaper entry models in the range and the Flair Plus I drove sits right at the top.

It comes with everything you would expect, including a good looking and driver adjustable digital instrument binnacle, front and rear parking sensors with a camera, start/stop, sat nav, DAB radio with Bluetooth, aux-in and USB, leather upholstery, LED headlight, adaptive cruise control, sat nav, and a cornering light function.

It also has Grip Control with hill descent assist, hill-start assist, trailer stability control Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, wireless smartphone charging, a dash camera and a raft of safety devices including autonomous emergency braking, lane keeping assistance, coffee break alert and driver attention alert.

FAST FACTS

Price: £27,740

Mechanical: 130bhp, 1199cc, 3cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 121mph

0-62mph: 10.7 seconds

Combined MPG: 54

Insurance Group: 17

C02 emissions: 119g/km

Bik rating: 27%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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