Official images of the new Citroen Cactus Concept car have been released, providing the public a glimpse of the new positioning of the brand's mainstream cars as affordable, practical and fuel efficient vehicles. According to Citroen, the Cactus concept is a "manifest" that previews its future C-line models, but it is expected that a production version will be available for sale next spring, and might replace the C4 compact hatchback in Citroen's lineup in Europe.
The brand said that the positioning of the C-line is "competitively priced," rather than being a direct rival to the Dacia budget brand of French rival Renault. Citroen is aiming the C-Line cars on customers looking for value-for-money cars, while its DS upscale models are targeting more affluent buyers. Citroen chief executive Frederic Banzet told Automotive News Europe in an interview that the idea is to address different customers and to limit the overlapping between their brands.
According to the brand, the C-Line series will attract buyers through its design and attractive cost of ownership, as well as user-friendly features.
The Cactus concept is powered by PSA/Peugeot-Citroen's Hybrid Air drivetrain that employs compressed air for energy storage instead of batteries. This powertrain also only consumes less than 3 liters of fuel per 100km. Having a length of 4210mm, the Cactus has a size comparable to the DS4 compact car derived from the C4, although it boasts of a higher ground clearance.
According to the carmaker, the Cactus' front end previews the visual identity of future C-line models -- smooth surfaces, a light signature created by LED daytime running lights.
The Cactus also features "airbumps" on the sides and the bumpers of the car, protecting the car from scratches as well as from t he effect of small impacts. The interior of the concept features a 7-inch screen instead of an instrument cluster while the control buttons are on an 8-inch touchscreen.