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Citroen C3 Aircross Spied – Testing New Sub 4m SUV To Rival Nexon?

Citroen C3 Aircross Spied in India
Citroen C3 Aircross Spied in India

The Citroen CC24 will be the second heavily localized model for India and is likely to be ready next year

Citroen is just a few days away from officially kick starting its sales operation in India with the C5 Aircross flagship SUV. The top-down approach will see the French brand following it up with a heavily localized mini SUV codenamed CC21 which is a size smaller than the likes of Maruti Vitara Brezza. The automaker is also busy developing more vehicles for our market.

Citroen CC24 – sub-4m contender?

The Citroen CC21 which is currently undergoing advanced stage of testing and validation will be pitting against the likes of Maruti Ignis and upcoming Tata HBX. This means, there is clearly enough room in the company’s domestic portfolio for a slightly larger sub-4m crossover. Codenamed, CC24, the second localized crossover for India is likely to be heavily based on the Europe-spec C3 Aircross.

The Citroen C3 Aircross prototype has been spotted testing in India without any camouflage. The test mule seems to be gathering preliminary data which will be useful for the development of its India-spec sibling. It is also possible that a rival carmaker is performing benchmark tests on a platform which is set to play a crucial role in Citroen’s local operations.

The European crossover is 4,154 mm long but we expect its domestic derivative to tuck just under the critical 4m mark while retaining the platform. It is also possible that Citroen keeps the length as is and take the fight directly towards Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos. However, for such an approach to work out, the C3 Aircross needs to pack a lot of premium features.

Citroen C3 Aircross Spied in India
Citroen C3 Aircross Spied in India

When is it coming?

A recent media report speculates that the Citroen CC24 SUV is being readied for launch in India sometime next year. However, given the initial launch has been pushed back by a few months due to the pandemic, there could be a delay in subsequent launch plans as well. Either way, we expect the see the CC24 in Indian showrooms toward the end of 2024.

At this point, its too early to talk about technical specifications of the Citroen CC24 with certainty but we suspect it to be equipped with a compact displacement turbocharged motor dishing out in the excess of 100 hp and 160 Nm of torque. Both manual and automatic transmissions are likely to be on offer. It could also get a bi-fuel option.

Citroen would be aiming to achieve over near 100% localization in a bit to arrive at a very competitive price tag. Even with good economies of scale and aggressive cost control, it would be a huge challenge for a new comer like Citroen to wage a war against the likes of Renault Kiger and Nissan Magnite purely on the basis of price alone.

Citroen C3 Aircross Spied in India
Citroen C3 Aircross Spied in India

As a part of its derisking strategy, Citroen will be focusing on export operations of all of its locally produced vehicles right from day one. Over the next 5 years, the company has plans to produce about 2.4 lakh cars in India. These will be CC21, CC24 and CC26 sedan (Honda City rival.)

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