An updated version of Citroen’s mid-sized SUV has been revealed in Europe, but it hasn’t been locked in for Australia.
The 2022 Citroen C5 Aircross features refreshed styling inside and out, and reaches European showrooms in the summer (our winter).
“We can confirm local evaluation is underway for the all-new C5 Aircross,” said a spokesperson for Peugeot Citroen Australia.
“We hope to have further information to share with you on the all-new Citroen C5 Aircross in the coming months.”
The greatest changes have occurred up front, where the C5 Aircross’ split-level lighting has been conjoined, a departure from a design element present on every Citroen crossover since the Cactus.
The LED daytime running lights, however, remain in two separate lines, and link up with an unusual split-level LED light bar.
Instead of forming a continuous line, the light bar features dotted LEDs.
There’s a sportier-looking front bumper treatment, similar to that of the C5 X, with the air dam featuring horizontal bars on either side of the radar.
Other external changes include new wheel designs and tail light graphics.
Inside, there’s a larger 10.0-inch touchscreen that’s now free-standing instead of being flanked by air vents like the old 8.0-inch unit.
The vents have been moved underneath the screen, while there’s no longer a conventional transmission shifter.
The C5 Aircross has been upgraded to the latest Advanced Comfort seats, with additional foam padding. The front seats are heated and feature massaging functionality.
The powertrain line-up is unchanged. While it includes turbo-diesel and plug-in hybrid options in Europe, here the C5 Aircross is available exclusively with a turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine with 121kW of power and 240Nm of torque, mated with a six-speed automatic transmission.
While the C5 Aircross update hasn’t been officially locked in and is instead being “evaluated”, like the facelifted C3 Aircross and electric e-C4, the brand says it sees 2022 as a growth year.
“Now whilst we have been challenged as a brand in 2021, we have an absolute driven commitment in the Australian market,” said Peugeot Citroen Australia general manager Kate Gillis late last year.
“Over the last number of years we have seen those sales start to decline, bearing in mind that we no longer have the Berlingo in the range, we have concentrated our LCVs to our Peugeot LCV lineup.
“However, with the launch of the C4 and… the new C5 X which is coming through in 2022, we’ve got some real ambition of growth plans within the market.”
The company hasn’t confirmed which C5 X variants will make their way Down Under but said the plug-in hybrid variant is “absolutely on the table”.
The C5 X is a genre-busting hatchback-cum-crossover, in a similar vein to the smaller C4, that’s longer and less boxy than the C5 Aircross, introduced in 2019. It’s due here in the third quarter of 2022.
Citroen sold just 175 vehicles in Australia last year, down 13.8 per cent on 2020, of which just 58 were C5 Aircross SUVs. That made it Australia’s worst-selling mid-sized SUV, besides the hydrogen-powered Hyundai Nexo.
Citroen sold 88 C3 light hatches, 26 of its C4 (a late-year introduction) and three of the discontinued C3 Aircross.
The next-generation C5 Aircross will reportedly be electric-only, according to Ouest France.
It says the model will use a “new electric platform” – likely Stellantis’ STLA Medium platform. A 2025 launch also appears likely.
The STLA Medium architecture is designed to support vehicles with an electric range of up to 700km.
STLA Medium cars will use batteries of between 87kWh and 104kWh, and both single- and dual-motor powertrains. The architecture can support front-, rear- and all-wheel drive.
MORE: Everything Citroen C5 Aircross