Citroen’s Aircross concept hybrid to hit Shanghai showPOSTED BY Nigel Andretti ON 10 April 2015
CITROEN has announced its new Aircross concept, potentially previewing a next-generation midsized SUV in the process.
And in a clear hint that it has been engineered specifically for the Chinese market, the Aircross concept’s world premiere will take place at the Shanghai Auto Show on April 22.
The French carmaker says the Aircross offers a taste of its “international ambitions”, developed “with a body style intended for worldwide sale”.
Citroen has yet to confirm a production future for its new concept, but, like the C4 Cactus before it, it may hit showrooms with very few styling changes when it gets there.
As with the compact Cactus and the new Picasso models, the Aircross concept features a split headlight and grille design that is quickly becoming the family face of the Citroen brand.
A new and more muscular body extends behind the new concept’s face, with pumped wheel arches trimmed in rugged cladding. A wraparound D-pillar can also be seen at the rear.
The rear view is dominated by a pair of pill-shaped tail lamps with a layered LED design.
Bumpers at both ends feature large grey plastic inserts, housing deep-set fog lights up front and a pair of exhaust tips at the rear.
The three-pod look of those panels is replicated through the lower edge of the doors, which are flanked by pumped guards and large 22-inch five-spoke alloys.
Power in the Aircross is provided by a petrol-electric plug-in hybrid EV system, pairing a 160kW (215hp)/275Nm 1.6 litre turbo engine with a 70kW/200Nm electric motor.
Citroen claims the Aircross will cover the 0-100km/h sprint in a rapid 4.5 seconds, while fuel consumption in regulation driving is estimated at just 1.7 l/100km.
An all-electric driving range of 50km is also promised.
Citroen does not currently offer any plug-in hybrid models, although this new unveiling may be a new clue of its plans for a future PHEV.
For now, the company offers only the unrelated diesel-electric Hybrid4 system, developed together with Bosch.
The company has previously revealed a version of the Aircross concept’s PHEV system in the Wild Rubis concept, which later became the DS brand’s first SUV – the 6WR – driven instead by regular petrol and diesel engines
In fact, it is likely that the 6WR forms the basis of this new concept’s architecture, with the 4.58m length and 2.8m wheelbase of the Aircross nearly identical to the DS-badged SUV’s 4.55m length and 2.73m wheelbase.