In-depth reviews

Citroën C3 hatchback - Reliability & safety

The brand’s reliability record isn’t great, and rivals are safer

Carbuyer Rating

3.0 out of 5

Citroen has had a mixed reputation for reliability in the past but recent models appear to be quite robust. Its 1.2-litre petrol and 1.5-litre diesel engines are certainly well-tested, having appeared in a multitude of Citroen and Peugeot models. The C3's Euro NCAP crash-test score is respectable for an affordable supermini, although it was tested a few years ago and the criteria for four stars gets tougher every year. Novel features like a dashcam show Citroen is keen to usher in convenient tech that helps it stand out amongst rivals.

Citroen C3 reliability

Citroen isn’t generally known for bulletproof reliability and our 2021 Driver Power owner satisfaction survey saw it come 28th out of 29 brands - a very poor result. The C3 came 81st out of the 100 cars in the 2019 survey but didn’t feature in 2020 or 2021. The Citroen C3 Aircross that's based on the C3 came 66th in 2020, with 20% of respondents telling us they'd had an issue in the first year.

Safety

The C3 was awarded four out of five stars for safety by Euro NCAP. Crash testing revealed physical protection of occupants to be very good, but the car was marked down for its lack of autonomous emergency braking (although it is standard for the Shine Plus trim). There’s plenty of standard safety kit, however, including mandatory items like tyre-pressure monitoring, stability control and a plethora of airbags front and back. You can also get equipment like blind-spot detection and a driver fatigue monitor that can sense how long you’ve been driving and suggest when you need to take a break.

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