Too rich for a Sandero Stepway but not rich enough for a Corsa? Then could a Citroen C3 SX be the choice for you? I don’t think so, but who am I to judge?

Just because it’s not selling here doesn’t mean it’s a bad car. It’s just the market that’s wrong. At the time of writing this review, the Citroen C3 started at 6,800 euros or 6.16 lakh in India, a very popular market for Citroen C3 and C3 AirCross. And yes, I looked up the data from India because here, Citroen C3 SX is not the most popular car, but it does appear on our streets from time to time.

However, it’s interesting because the Citroen C3 SX is as cheap or even cheaper than the Sandero. And now things get complicated. Both cost 10,000-11,000 euros new with trade-in and other discounts if you do things for and with the sales rep in the parking lot at the back of the dealership; both come with a 65-horsepower 1 litre petrol engine, both come with manual air conditioning, a radio, and some wiring. Both come with the option of factory-installed LPG for the smallest engine. The Dacia Sandero is a bit more spacious and, you’ll laugh, a bit better assembled, while the Citroen C3 is a bit cheaper and looks better. Especially if you get it with the red roof, then you practically have a budget Mini Cooper. So yes, if you want a city car that looks somewhat decent and costs 10,000 euros new and is not strictly limited to city life like the i10 or Picanto, then yes, it’s worth it. But that’s where the similarities end, along with the whole thing about the Citroen C3 SX.

Because it’s clear that Citroen didn’t focus too much on the C3, as we only have one petrol engine, naturally aspirated or turbocharged, and we had two diesel engines for 5 minutes that nobody bought because they were too expensive and because you don’t want to go on the M2 in a 1 litre Citroen C3.

As for city life, because that’s why the Citroen C3 SX is here for us. Very good for the city, the steering is very light, and the brakes are very light, but still the gearbox is long geared because it’s a Citroen. It’s a very easy car to drive if you have no inclination towards driving and you’re not interested in driving and you don’t have slogans about the spirit of driving and other nonsense. No, if you want a car that you can turn with your finger and brake with your finger and that you can park anywhere and you don’t care if you scratch it or hit it, and it looks decent, then yes. It’s worth the money.


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Citroen C3 SX Engines


  • 1.2 EB2F PureTech with 62 and 83 horsepower – The entry level engine and currently the only one available for sale, at least the 83 horsepower one. And you don’t need more. And yes, I recommend buying new or nearly new because the PureTech engine has a past and possibly a present of timing chain issues that wears out prematurely and can leave you with your pants down. I mean without an engine.
  • 1.2 EB2FT PureTech Turbo with 110 horsepower – Same engine, just now with a turbo added. And I wouldn’t necessarily buy it because of reliability issues, but rather because this engine starts at 19,400 euros, and I’m not convinced that those extra 30 horsepower will change your life and are worth the money. It’s not an hooning engine, and the car is not an hooning hero car. The only real reason you would buy this version is that it’s the only one with an automatic gearbox, but we’re already over 20,000 euros, and I don’t know what to say about that.


  • 1.5d DV5 BlueHDi with 102 horsepower – The successor to the 1.6 BlueHDi was available for sale for 3 minutes and 24 seconds, so I won’t talk too much about it.
  • 1.6D DV6 BlueHDi with 75 and 99 horsepower – Because the old 1.6 BlueHDi is the most popular diesel engine for sale, there are currently even 3 classifieds on autotrader. There are no longer reliability issues from the past, but still, it should be kept away from urban jungles because it will have issues with the particle filter, EGR, injectors, and so on. And because we live in ecological times, you also need to pay attention to the AdBlue system and have AdBlue cans in the trunk all the time. Alternatively, you can buy a petrol version that does about the same fuel economy but doesn’t have any of these drawbacks.


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Citroen C3 SX Reliability Issues

  • The ConnectCAM system will torment you like memories do when you wake up in the middle of the night, cry softly, and remember.
  • Shock and horror, as one of the most beautiful women in the universe would say, the Citroen C3 SX is very cheap in terms of interiors and quality in general. But again, for 6,700 euros, the price in India, you shouldn’t have any expectations.
  • Manual gearboxes are geared long and I didn’t necessarily understand why, so do a test drive beforehand and see if you get along with the gear ratios.


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Citroen C3 SX Verdict

It’s clear that the Citroen C3 SX wasn’t planned for the European market and is worth buying only in the entry level version. But it’s a car that competes in terms of price with the Sandero and isn’t too far off in terms of price-quality ratio. So if you don’t want a Sandero but want something cheap for the city, a base Citroen C3 can be all the car you need. Just don’t go for the more expensive versions.

Which engines do I recommend? The 1.0 PureTech petrol engine with 83 horsepower and a manual gearbox is all the C3 you need, and for diesel, even the 1.6 HDi with 75 horsepower is enough, although I don’t know exactly why you would buy one.