Citroen's new people carrier
Citroen will launch the SpaceTourer at the Geneva Motor Show in March - it's a multi-seat MPV (which can carry as many as nine people) and is based on a commercial vehicle. Well, sort of. Clearly, just from looking at it, you can see that it's van-based, but actually the platform underneath the body is PSA Group's EMP2 chassis, which is used in models such as the C4 Picasso and Peugeot 308. So it's a car based on a van based on a car.
It is 4.6 metres long and Citroen says that it's: "designed with both contemporary family and business life in mind." Van-based it may be but you can have it with stylish 17-inch wheels and colour options that include Tourmaline Orange and Rich Oak Brown.
It features the next generation of hands-free access too. Waggling your foot around under the back bumper doesn't just open the boot, but also opens the huge sliding side doors , which are said to give easy access to all rows of seats, even in the nine-seat configuration. The front of the cabin is home to a lower glove box with an audio jack, 12V socket and a USB port. The upper glove box is lit and refrigerated. There are cup holders on both sides of the dashboard, a central upper storage area and door storage units large enough for 1.5-litre bottles. Rear passengers are also treated to aircraft-style trays, sun blinds and power sockets.
Up front, the driver gets a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system that comes with Apple CarPlay and Mirror Link, while there's even an optional heads up display to make everything feel truly modern. Buyers can also have active beam headlights and a rear parking camera system, which shows a 180-degree arc image of the rear of the car and its surroundings.
Safety kit includes lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring, road sign recognition, driver tiredness monitor, active cruise control and collision alert. The SpaceTourer has already received a full five-star safety rating from EuroNCAP.
Power comes from the new 1.6- and 2.0-litre BlueHDI diesel range, which Citroen is (unsurprisingly) keen to point out uses a standard SCR (Selective Catalytic Reduction) system, which injects AdBlue urea into the exhaust to dramatically reduce emissions of nitrogen oxide. The engines come with 95hp, 115hp, 150hp and 180hp outputs and CO2 emissions range from 133- to 152g/km. Manual and automatic gearboxes are available.
While Citroen expects business customers to be the primary target for the SpaceTourer (hotels and airport shuttle services especially) it's not beyond funking the car up a bit for a more lifestyle market. The SpaceTourer Hyphen concept will appear at the Geneva Motor Show and "forges a clear link between families and groups of friends; MPVs and SUVs; cities and wide open spaces. Everyone is encouraged to step on board and to enjoy an adventure together." The car has been designed in collaboration with the pop group Hyphen Hyphen, whoever they are.
According to Arnaud Belloni, Director of Marketing and Communication: "Citroën has always known how to innovate, to be a pioneer and to spot talent. After meeting Hyphen Hyphen, the idea for a partnership came about naturally. This vibrant, offbeat group has a real graphic and musical signature. This may be a communication campaign, but one that comes straight from the heart! It's also a way for us to pool our values of optimism, sharing and creativity."
The Hyphen edition comes with a chunky exterior body kit and a paint job that blends from bright orange at one end to metallic light green at the other. It also rides higher than standard, on diamond-turned 19-inch alloy wheels. Underneath, it gets a four-wheel drive system for supposed go-anywhere capability, plus the 150hp BlueHDI 2.0-litre engine with a six-speed manual gearbox.
The two-tone colour scheme is continued inside and there's a huge glass roof. The seats are covered in Nappa leather and the carpets are a rich wool. It'll appear in Geneva and there's a good chance of, if not quite a production model, then at least enough optional accessories in the SpaceTourer catalogue to be able to make a pretty convincing replica for yourself.
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