April 20, 2016 – Bejing
While Citroën will formally introduce its new C6 next week at the Beijing Motor Show, images have surfaced online from a Chinese dealer promotional event held on April 13.
Unfortunately, after showing stunning concepts like the Metropolis and the Numero 9, that many thought they would be closely replicated in their new flagship sedan, the new C6 is quite a letdown.
Numero 9 concept
Instead Citroen chose to give a light facelift to the Fengshen A9, a sedan built by Dongfeng Motor their automotive partner in China. And in the process managed to make it look even more hideous.
Both the Fengshen A9 and the Citroën C6 are based on the PSA EMP2 platform, because Dongfeng Motor are one of the largest shareholders in PSA. The companies also have a long-running Dongfeng-PSA joint venture to makes various Citroen and Peugeot branded cars for the Chinese market.
The engine too is the same for both cars: a PSA 1.8 liter ‘THP’ turbo with an output of 200hp and 280nm, mated to a six-speed automatic transmission sending power to the front wheels.
Price for the Fengshen A9 is from 179.700 to 229.700 yuan ($27,750 – $35,450 US). Price for the Citroën C6 is expected to be from 200.000 yuan run up to 300.000 yuan ($30,900 – $46,300 US). The difference due to the “upmarket” Citroën badge and because the Citroën C6 has a fancier interior with an all-digital instrument panel. But even that seems rather basic compared to other competitive offerings. The Citroën C6 will compete with cars such as the Ford Taurus, the Buick LaCrosse, and the Toyota Crown. This segment is relatively unknown in Europe but very popular in China. Price-wise the vehicles are positioned just below the BMW 3-Series, Audi A4, and Mercedes C-Class, but they are usually bigger and try to be more luxurious.
Targeting the upper business D segment, this 4.96m long premium sedan is set to go on sale in China at the end of the year.
Designed by the Styling Centre in Paris alongside the Shanghai team, the Citroën C6 will be built in Wuhan. Citroën’s press release touts its “flowing, modern lines and exceptional interior qualities with particular emphasis on the cabin (space, ambience, materials, seats and technologies) in order to set the highest standards in comfort for all the passengers.”
The company feels it is an opportunity for the brand to present its “Citroën Advanced Comfort” programme, a commitment to comfort through four key factors that reflect Citroën’s approach:
• Filter out any road surface imperfections, for a cocoon-like ride, with improved suspension, seating and acoustics (though they have chose to do away with hydropneumatic suspension);
• Simplify life on board, with generous, functional space, numerous storage compartments and accessible controls;
• Create a more user-friendly experience with intuitive technology and driving aids that can be used every day and so that customers can remain connected to the digital world and the car;
• Lighten the load both physically and mentally, welcoming occupants with a more relaxed ambience, displaying only information that is truly useful, improving natural light and the materials used in the cabin. [Ed note: Don’t think that was accomplished here.]
But it’s the front end that really puts us off. Whereby the previous C6 was unusual, it had a flow and simplicity reminiscent of the original DS. This looks more like a Ford design gone awry with 2 tiers of broad horizontal grill and square shaped LED lights in the upper portion, while adhering to the style invoked by Citroën’s C4 in China.
At the moment there are no plans to send the new G6 overseas. Thank heavens!