New suspension technology and major changes to the signature ‘air bumps’ feature on the new Citroën C4 Cactus, unveiled ahead of its launch in Spring 2018.
The car has been revealed just as the Citroën C3 Aircross goes on sale, a small SUV that some observers consider has made the C4 Cactus effectively redundant. But Citroën has shown its faith in the model with wide-ranging updates.
Prime amongst these are the Progressive Hydraulic Cushions (PHC) – suspension technology debuting on a European Citroën and described as giving the car a ‘Magic Carpet’ ride quality. PHC is set to appear on other future models from the brand and its development resulted in the filing of 20 patents.
The PHC system replaces the bump stops in a conventional spring and damper suspension system with a pair of hydraulic stops on each unit – one for compression and one for decompression. These come into play when the car endures a heavy impact on the road surface, such as a pothole, by slowing each end of the suspension movement to avoid sudden jolts in the cabin.
Citroën is heavily promoting its Advanced Comfort programme and alongside the PHC the Cactus also debuts Advanced Comfort Seats. These use a high-density foam that is said to maintain its comfort even after many hours of use, or as the seats age over time.
Visually the most notable exterior difference of the Cactus will be the new design of ‘Air Bump’ body side mouldings. These are slimmer than their predecessors and mounted lower, on the sills rather than the door panels.
The new C4 Cactus will be offered with a wide line-up of powertrains although not all will be available to UK buyers. British buyers are expected to have a choice of petrol units ranging across 82, 110 or 130hp, all with manual gearboxes and the 110 also offered with a six-speed auto.
Diesel buyers will initially choose between either standard or stop-and-start versions of a 110hp unit. In Autumn 2018 a 120hp version with the auto transmission will join the line-up.
Meanwhile, technology available on the C4 Cactus will include 12 driver assistance systems and three different connectivity options. The latter includes Smartphone compatibility for Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and MirrorLink, a connected navigation system through a seven-inch touchscreen and an assistance service for emergencies or accidents.