Citroen wants to capitalise on its WRC involvement
Such a hot hatch would “not just be power, power, power but offer other Citroën ingredients”
A performance Citroen C3, which would create a link between the brand’s road cars and World Rally Championship participation, is still in the frame, according to Citroën boss Linda Jackson.
Talking at the Frankfurt motor show, she said she would “like to see some links between the C3 on road and track” but, until customers demand it, it is “not relevant for the positioning of the brand”.
Despite Jackson’s caution, a Ford Fiesta ST rival is under serious consideration at Citroën. Jackson told Autocar earlier this year: “I would like to have something that links the investment and benefits from WRC and Citroën Racing and we currently have something in study.”
She also said: “I don’t have the answer, I’ll be honest. It’s got to be a car that has a link to racing. But it’s got to feel good. I’ve given [product boss] Xavier Peugeot the challenge.”
The difficulty is that it potentially runs counter to the brand’s positioning. But Jackson wants to continue with the WRC because “it has the second highest number of followers in motorsport after F1. It provides us with tremendous publicity.”
She said: “This car will be something no one else has done. But it can’t be soft and it’s got to be credible.”
Xavier Peugeot confirmed such a car would “not just be power, power, power but offer other Citroën ingredients”, notably comfort.
“We need to create a bridge between the motorsport car and everyday car,” he said.
With that in mind, a hot C3 would likely offer refinement as well as speed, putting it most in line with the Volkswagen Polo GTI.