Citroën lightens up with new C4 Picasso

French carmaker Citroën is reducing the weight of its mini-MPV C4 Picasso and also lightening the load on drivers' pockets with a range of new engines providing enhanced economy.

The new C4 Picasso, which is due to grace garage forecourts in the autumn, has adopted the PSA Group's new engineering focus it has already revealed in the Peugeot 308.

The PSA Group incorporates both the Citroën and Peugeot names and the EMP2 platform brings a wealth of measures to save weight. The alloy body, composite rear floor and tailgate and aluminium bonnet contribute savings of 210kg, making the C4 Picasso tip the scales at the same weight as the C3, according to Citroën.

"Forceful and intense" styling has made the C4 shorter and wider than its previous version. Its overall length has been reduced by 4cm and its overhang is now 7cm shorter, while it is just over 8cm wider at the front and 3cm bigger at the back.

The cabin is roomier with a wheelbase that adds 5cm and lengthy DIY material or surfboards are now better accommodated as the front passenger seat folds forward to provide 2.5m of storage. Further adjustments to the second row of seats add even more room for drivers wanting to carry big loads.

Not only has Citroën cut its physical dimensions, but the C4 Picasso's three new HDi diesel engines have also reduced its carbon footprint and fuel consumption too. One 1.4 litre engine with 89bhp is joined by two 1.6 litre versions giving 114bhp and 148bhp.

The most economical of the drivetrains on offer is the 89bhp e-HDI 90 which, combined with the ETG6 clutchless six-speed manual transmission, offers 98g/km and 74mpg, while the 1.6-litre e-HDI 115 gives out 104g/km and delivers 70mpg under the same transmission specifications.

For many car manufacturers blue seems to be the new green these days when it comes to naming and describing the most environmentally-friendly and economical cars on the road and Citroën's BlueHDi 150 boasts a 1.6 litre diesel engine with mono-nitrogen oxide tailgate emissions regulated by a SCR (Selective Catalytic Reduction) converter giving out 110g/km.

It is thought that a six-speed automatic version of the C4 Picasso will also be available, but probably not among the first versions that are available to buy from September.

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