A guide to the new Citroen C1 and Peugeot 108

This summer sees the arrival of two new major entries into the city car market – the next-generation Citroen C1 and the all-new Peugeot 108.

The previous city cars from both of these manufacturers (the older C1 and Peugeot 107) shared the same platform and the majority of other components. This is very much the case again with the new C1 and 108.

Both cars are priced from £8,245 and both will launch to the UK market from the start of July 2014. Both models are also set to deliver an interesting range of personalisation options alongside highly affordable and easy-going driving experiences. Here is our detailed guide to the new Citroen and Peugeot city cars.

Appeal

Both the new Citroen C1 and Peugeot 108 have received major styling updates compared to their predecessors. Although these two French city cars share a lot of parts they manage to achieve their own distinct and memorable look.

The new C1 with its new vertical LED daytime running lights appears pretty unique next to any other city car currently on the market. Other highlights of the C1’s design include the glass tailgate complete with square rear lights.

The 108 meanwhile is the first Peugeot city car to sport the manufacturer’s current trademark grille, which already looks impressive on the latest 308 hatchback. A similar grille now adorns this new 108 to give the city car an extra touch of premium class which should prove welcome.

Other smart features on the 108 include the LED daytime running lights and the large glazed tailgate which extends from the spoiler to the loading sill with integrated hinges.

A major new feature for both the C1 and the 108 is the introduction of a cabriolet bodystyle, which swaps the hard-top for a folding fabric roof. To distinguish them better these cabriolet models have their own identifications – C1 Airscape and 108 TOP!

Whether choosing the standard hatchback or the cabriolet bodystyle, the Citroen and Peugeot can be specified with three or five doors. Only three-door is available though if you choose the most basic trim for either car.

Practicality

Not only do the new Citroen C1 and Peugeot 108 share the same platform, they also deliver the same level of practicality.

With either city car there are storage compartments throughout the cabin with cup holders and a glovebox able to hold a one-litre bottle and with a lid for greater peace of mind.

Also found is a functional boot with 196 litres of capacity. This is easy to access, with the parcel shelf folding away when the tailgate is opened. With the rear seats folded, boot capacity increases to 780 litres.

Updated power steering for the Citroen and Peugeot models deliver a more precise and enjoyable drive with smooth and sharp steering for both city roads and the open countryside.

Engines

The new Citroen and Peugeot city cars will be available from launch with a choice of two highly-efficient petrol engines.

For the C1 there’s a basic 68bhp 1.0-litre VTi unit, which can be mated to either a five-speed manual or automatic gearbox. Only the top trim level C1, however, is available with the automatic box. This 1.0-litre unit is also available as a more frugal e-VTi, linked with a five-speed manual gearbox and supported with stop-start engine technology.

The other petrol engine for the Citroen is a 1.2-litre unit producing 82bhp, mated only to a five-speed manual gearbox. This unit returns an official combined fuel consumption of 65mpg and CO2 emissions are at just 99g/km, meaning free Vehicle Excise Duty.

The Peugeot 108 is similarly available with either a 1.0-litre petrol engine with 68bhp or a 1.2-litre PureTech petrol unit with 82bhp. The basic 1.0-litre unit produces 95g/km in CO2 emissions, reduced to 88g/km with stop-start technology specified.

Trim

The Citroen C1 is available with three trim levels in total while customers of the Peugeot 108 have four to choose from.

New Citroen C1 trims start with ‘Touch’ and this is followed by ‘Feel’ and ‘Flair’. The basic Touch trim is only available with the three-door hard-top C1.

Meanwhile, the Peugeot 108 trim line-up begins with ‘Access’ and that’s followed with ‘Active’, ‘Allure’ and ‘Feline’. The basic Access trim is only available with three-door hard-top 108 models.

Standard equipment for both the C1 and 108 includes remote central locking, electric front windows and an MP3 compatible audio system with a USB/auxiliary socket. Two rear ISOFIX mountings for child seats are also standard for these city cars.

Perrys Pick

When choosing between the C1 and the 108, there’s little to actually separate them since the specification line-up for both are priced the same and offer virtually the same package.

Both cars should prove great new additions to the city car segment, so in the end it has to come down to which you prefer in terms of styling. The other decision to make of course is choosing the most suitable specification.

If you’re choosing the new Citroen C1 to buy then our choice of specification is the C1 Airscape Feel model with the 68bhp petrol engine. This particular choice is priced at £10,345 in three-door guise, or £10,745 as a five-door.

The engine should offer plenty of performance particularly for commuting through city environments and prove very cheap to run. With the Feel trim you also get some welcome luxuries such as air conditioning and a DAB radio.

All of the entertainment features are also integrated into what is called a Touch Drive interface. This comes complete with a seven-inch display screen and it can be navigated with steering mounted controls. Even better of course, the C1 Airscape offers the folding soft-top roof, a particularly fun feature during the summer.

On the other hand, if you prefer the Peugeot 108 then our choice of specification would be the similarly priced 108 TOP! Active. Priced from £10,345, it’s just £850 more compared to its equivalent hatchback counterpart.

Customers interested in personalising their 108 a little more can choose from a wide range of extra styling kits, priced from £100. For example an Aikinite ambience can be added, which consists of a dash insert and gloss black surround on the centre console.