Why the new Citroen C3 should revolutionize the hatchback segment

Why the new Citroen C3 should revolutionize the hatchback segment


The new Citroen C3

Photo: Stellantis / Advertising

What can we expect from the new Citroën C3? A lot. Stellantis – the leading conglomerate that brings together the Citroën, Fiat, Jeep, Peugeot and Ram brands – has taken this launch very seriously. Nothing was done in haste; on the contrary. The idea is to launch a car sometime in the third quarter with high build quality and good production output.

In other times, the new Citroën C3 would have been just a new generation of a car that disappeared from the market. It arrived with revolutionary ideas, such as a roof-mounted windshield, and ended up being an ill-positioned car that was completely rejected by the public. Now it’s different. The new Citroen C3 will launch a segment.

The difference is that the new Citroen C3 will not try to impress with controversial ideas, such as a windshield that takes up part of the roof (a solution rejected by the public), but for utility. The new C3 will remain a small hatchback but will have an “SUV attitude”.

What does that mean? It means that the car will have a higher suspension, a higher driving position and a lot of power not seen in lower cars like the current hatchbacks (Chevrolet Onix, Hyundai HB20, Fiat Argo, Peugeot 208 and Volkswagen Polo).

Production of the new Citroen C3 in Porto Real (RJ)

Production of the new Citroen C3 in Porto Real (RJ)

Photo: Stellantis/Disclosure

What? Will it be what we used to call an amazing chick? It is not. The glamorous shoes of other times brought beauty accessories that were often an empty bet on the emotional judgment of consumers and not on practicality. Example: the open spare tire of the VW CrossFox, which was good but ordinary, so it is difficult to open the trunk. The new Citroen C3, as we know, will not need this kind of trickery.

It is expected that the new Citroën C3 will come with a different suspension setup than is usual in the brand. The Brazilian likes stable cars behind. It will not be positioned as the first car, as it was in the current generation. The idea is for Citroën to be seen as a brand that caters to a different audience, seeing the car as a companion to a fast, modern, connected and practical life.

Almost everything compact hatchbacks once were. But today they are not very attractive, as they are considered low cars with small trunks. The “SUV attitude” of the new Citroën C3 should change this concept, bringing more durability and greater skill in the use of the car. So much so that it will be Volkswagen’s most anticipated car of this decade.

As is well known, the VW Gol will be discontinued at the end of this year – and there is nothing more symbolic to indicate that the time for the low hatch can be communicated. The goal will be replaced at the beginning of the year with the Polo Song. There will also be a sedan that can be called the Virtus Anthem (instead of the Safari) and a new generation of the Saveiro image.

The car that will mark the new phase of Volkswagen will be a small SUV. Or, who knows, a hatchback with an SUV attitude. But it will only arrive in 2025, three years after the new Citroen C3. Until then, the French brand will have a chance to reorganize itself in the Brazilian market. The good news is that there will be no such car from Peugeot, so Citroën has an open field to shine.

The history of Citroen has never been very well researched in Brazil. Citroen’s importance to the European industry is great. Suffice it to say that it was Citroën, with the Traction Avant design, that popularized front-wheel drive cars with a monocoque body (the formula used by almost all cars today). The Citroen Traction Avant was produced from 1934 to 1957.

André Citroen (the founder of the brand) was considered “the Henry Ford of Europe”, such changes he introduced in the French automobile industry. He combined Fordist production (to make the car cheaper and more popular) with revolutionary technical ideas.

The new Citroen C3.

The new Citroen C3.

Photo: Stellantis / Advertising

Its legacy remains with the Citroen 2CV, one of the most famous cars in France in the 20th century. It can also be seen in the car that replaced the Traction Avant, the Citroen DS, which introduced an interesting design and was called Boca-de-Sapo in Portugal, with suspension for hydropneumatic.

To what extent the new Citroen C3 will be able to revolutionize the small car segment in Brazil remains to be seen. But Stellantis is determined to test it, which is why it has been working hard to launch the new C3. The field is open. Just as the Volkswagen Gol, Chevrolet Corsa and Hyundai HB20, each in its own time, revolutionized the subcompact segment, the new Citroën C3 is coming to shake things up. Later on