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Citroen C1

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Citroen C1 1.0i VT
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Citroen C1 1.0i VT

Driven April 2009

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Drum roll please: at just 106g/km, the new Citroen C1 emits less CO2 than almost any other petrol car on sale in the UK. Well, apart from the 107 and Aygo and...

That's the problem for the poor C1. No matter how economical, cheap and entertaining it manages to be, its identical siblings are eternally hovering, boasting equally impressive stats and, importantly, value.

So which one to go for? To TG's discerning, the C1 has always been the best-looking of the bunch, and the visual tweaks for 2009 confirm that. A new front end with rounded headlights and a wider mouth keeps the C1 looking fresh and C3 Picasso-esque - no bad thing. It's certainly a far handsomer thing than the i10 or Alto.

It's more fun, too. Though the C1 lacks the mechanical solidity of the Hyundai, there's a sprightliness, a lightness to the C1's responses that other city cars just can't match. Er, apart from the Aygo and 107. While resolutely slow, the 1.0-litre three-pot is peppy and impressively frugal into the bargain: the engine tweaks that have lowered the CO2 emissions by 3g/km also raise economy to 62.8mpg. Yes, that's the same as the 107 and Aygo.

Though their rivals have closed the gap, the PSA-Toyota triplets are still top of the city car pile if A Bit of Driving Pleasure is high on your priority list. Torn between the three? Bargain hard: dealers have a whole lot of units to shift at the moment.

Sam Philip 

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