Few cars mark the automotive world as much as the “big” Citroëns. Be it the original “Déesse”, or the CX, or the Maserati-powered SM, and last but not least the XM. The way they drive, hold the road, seem to float over potholes, is simply unsurpassed.
Each car of this extraordinary lineage set its very own standards. The challenge to make even a better car was therefore nothing short of formidable. Yet the Citroën engineers have since 2005 succeeded in pushing the limit(s) even further.
Yes, the C6 is already a few years amongst us. But still it is a car we would like many future cars to be…
Hans Knol ten Bensel
Seeing the car is already a trip into the future. The clean long bonnet, the sweeping lines of the side window contours and roof line tell it all. The rear windscreen is elegantly curved, reminiscent of the Cx generation.
Also the styling of boot and rear lights are a hallmark of good taste and timeless elegance. Indeed, the car looks good from any angle and has everything to become a classic, something of which the large group of Citroën enthusiasts is of course truly convinced, and rightly so.
Stepping into the car, the futuristic experience continues. The dashboard is pleasantly clean and uncluttered, with of course - noblesse oblige - a head up display so you can observe the car's speed while keeping your eyes on the road.
On the centre console, all the controls are neatly arranged, and one feels immediately at home. French cars are practical, and the C6 is no exception.
Vast and beautifully designed and panelled door pockets are neatly inserted, and the pocket covers slide up and down, so you can discreetly tuck away all these essentials you want to have at hand.
In the centre console, you have also plenty of stowaway space, and of course a well hidden "niche" for your iPod or other audio media. Of course, bluetooth connectivity is also built in, as a car of this stature befits.
Smooth and powerful Diesel V6...
Our test car was fitted with the 3 litre 240 horsepower V6 Diesel engine from the PSA stable, and this brings you state-of-the art Diesel technology.
The 24 valve engine behaves wonderfully, being completely vibrationless, with loads of torque, power and last but not least a beautiful exhaust note, underlining masterfully the noble character of the car. It develops not less than 240 HP at 3800 rpm, with an impressive torque of 450 Nm being available at a mere 1600 rpm.
The engine is coupled to a very smooth and pleasant 6 speed automatic, which is ideally suited to the engine's torque characteristics. During the test, we hardly moved the lever out of its "D" position, as the box changes up and down at just the right moments, and adapts swiftly to your actual driving style.
Despite its utter smoothess, the engine/gearbox combination delivers some breathtaking performance. The way the car behaves at high speeds and under acceleration, gives you the impression of complete effortlessness, and although one feels that one is going quite fast, only the actual figures tell you exactly HOW fast your are moving.
The C6 accelerates from 0 to 100 in merely 8.9 seconds, and will bring you in all comfort to a top speed of not less than 240 kph. Needless to say, the C6 is a very fast car, and what's more, it tops all this up with effortless comfort and excellent sure-footedness and impeccable roadholding.
The excellence of a "grande routière".
Indeed, the chassis and suspension of the C6 is a chapter on its own. No other marque in the world understands better, in our opinion, what it takes to build a "grande routière" or a limousine grand tourer, if one could translate it like this. The softness of the supsension, the stability of the chassis and whole car at speed, the way it negotiates short bends and especially long curves, how it behaves on wet roads, under heavy braking, is simply without par. The C6 sets standards which are very hard to follow by anyone.
Admittedly, the softness of the suspension might not be to everyone's liking, and the Citroën engineers offer you therefore the choice of a "sports" setting, which adds more firmness to the suspension and dampens the body movements of the car in curves. It is a setting one will choose when getting familiar with the car, but we bet that when you discover more the true character and charm of the big Citroën, you will opt for the proper "comfort" mode. We must admit we left it in this "comfort" mode some 99 % of the time during our test.
Timeless elegance and "panache"
The finish of our test car proved excellent, the quality of the materials used (our test car had a leather interior) also left nothing to be desired. What makes the car stand out is its timeless elegance, as we said above. As the engine and gearbox are well proven units, designed and engineered within thePSAgroup, the reliability of the C6 will hardly pose any problems. The C6 is also quite frugal. The average consumption during our test was merely 7,3 litres, with the car being driven quite briskly on motorways and also for quite a large part of the test distance in heavy Brussels city traffic.
So when you are looking for an exclusive, elegant and fast grand tourer, take a long and close look at this epoche-making limousine, it will not only make you really stand out as a connaisseur, but you will also have a beautiful time enjoying this car.
Hans Knol ten Bensel
The 240 HP 3 litre V6 Diesel is mated to an excellent 6 speed automatic...
You can set up the ideal seating position electronically...
You can also set up the firmness of the suspension...