Citroen is taking the Indian market quite seriously. They have already launched the C5 AirCross and are now working on an all-new compact SUV that they are developing from scratch for the Indian market. The codename of the SUV is CC21 and it is currently being tested on Indian as well as foreign roads. According to ACI, the new compact SUV is likely to be called C3 Sporty in India. It is expected to get launched in the Indian market next year.
The new SUV is part of Citroen’s C-Cubed programme. The manufacturer will be developing specific small vehicles for emerging and developing countries. The C3 Sporty will be built in India as well as South America. It will also go on sale in the same countries.
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Citroen will be using the Common Modular Platform for the CC21. It is already being used on several other vehicles that include Peugeot. It will also be used by the upcoming sub-4-metre SUV by Jeep. The CMP platform is known for its versatility because it was designed to be modular. The platform supports petrol, diesel, hybrid and even electric powertrains. The platform can underpin sedans, compact SUVs, hatchbacks and even SUVs. Citroen can also choose from different track widths, rear modules, wheel diameters and even different wheelbase. This gives a lot of options to the manufacturer.
The C3 Sporty will 1.2-litre turbocharged engine that produces around 100 PS of max power and a peak torque output of 150 Nm of peak torque. We already know from the spy shots that it will be offered with a 5-speed manual gearbox. There are also talks of a dual-clutch automatic transmission that will be on offer, but that can raise the prices quite a bit. Because the engine capacity is 1.2-litres and the C3 will measure less than 4 metres, it would be able to take the tax advantage that our government offers.
The Citroen C3 will start from the lower spectrum of the compact SUVs. So, the main rivals will be affordable compact SUVs such as Nissan Magnite, Renault Kiger, Hyundai Venue and Kia Sonet. So, the starting price of the C3 is expected to be somewhere around Rs. 6 lakhs ex-showroom and the top-end variant will cost upwards of Rs. 9 lakhs ex-showroom. Due to this, the C3 will also compete against Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Tata Nexon, Mahindra XUV 300, Ford Ecosport and Toyota Urban Cruiser.
The design of the C3 Sporty resembles a lot of other Citroen vehicles which is a good thing. This will help people in getting to know the manufacturer’s design language. Because the C3 will be a more affordable vehicle, it will miss out on an electric sunroof and get conventional door handles that are pulled upwards instead of outwards. It also misses out on a shark-fin antenna and proper alloy wheels. Instead, it gets wheel covers that are designed to mimic alloy wheels. We have seen a similar thing on the Hyundai i20 and Kia Sonet.