AN EV tester has revealed why his latest test car isn’t ready for UK roads yet.
Matt Saunders took the new Citroen e-C4 for a spin but discovered a few problems that gave him doubts.
Write for Autocarhe named three problems that could affect demand for the fast mid-size hatchback model.
First, he discussed the cost of the e-C4 compared to the rest of its market class.
At £37,195 it’s almost £1,000 more expensive than its nearest rival, the VW ID3, while the similarly sized Kia e-Niro is almost £4,000 cheaper.
You can even get your hands on a high-end Range Rover Evoque for under £40,000 while still going electric.
Moving away from electric vehicles, you can buy a BMW 3 Series for £39,055 and a Mercedes GLB SUV for £39,765, both of which offer significantly more space and luxury features.
Matt said: “In top specification it certainly goes further and drives out of town with more confidence and authority than before, but only at a price that some will consider uncharacteristically high.”
He attributed the price to a larger battery installed in the model to increase range and performance.
However, this raises the next problem because according to Matt, the range isn’t as great as he’d hoped.
He wrote: “Some lack electric range, others lack upscale appeal and cabin quality.”
The engine expert claimed that testing showed an expected range of around 230 miles for the top version, while at the lower end of the range it was under 200 miles.
In comparison, the ID3 does around 280 miles in its range-topping models, while a £30,000 Mini Electric SE still gets 190 miles for £7,000 less EV database.
Finally, he addressed the topic of charging infrastructure.
Most electric vehicles are affected by this issue to some degree as the UK’s charging system is in chaos, but Matt described Citroen’s 100kW fast charging as “a little out of line with its main competitors”.
He added that Autocar’s data showed the e-C4 was “off the pace” when it came to charging compared to other major brands.
This came after an electric vehicle owner explained why he feared his car would be easier to steal and endanger drivers.
Meanwhile, Ford discontinued a popular model, which it blamed on its push toward an all-electric lineup.
Citroen declined to comment.