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Home » Archives » April 2013 » Yes, You can by a new Citroën in the United States

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Yes, You can by a new Citroën in the United States

Notice I did not say you should, but you can -- In fact, you can buy several different models.

Today, no car maker is an island. Parts come from common suppliers, engines are developed by joint ventures, and cars are built on other manufacturer’s productions lines.

This article now has a Part 2. See more cars and updates in this article.

Citroën, Europe's 2nd largest car manufacture, is no exception to such practices. It is for this reason that you can buy several current Citroën models today in the US. Of course, you still can't go to a Citroën dealer in the US, and the car you buy won't have Citroën badging, but with the exception of some trim pieces, and a very few other changes, it will be identical to Citroën models sold in Europe.

iMIEVandC-Zero (34k image)
Photos from respective companies' websites.
Mitshubishi i-MiEV (left) and Citroën C-Zero (right)

The Citroën C-Zero, the Peugeot iOn, and the Mitsubishi i-MiEV are all essentially the same (pure electric) vehicle. The Mitsubishi i-MiEV is sold here in the USA. Note that the US versions of the i-MiEV are different than those sold in Japan. The US versions are slightly longer due to bumpers needed to meet US crash standards, but the EU (European Union) standard versions also have the enhanced bumpers. In other words, the US version may differ noticeably from the Japanese model, but it is not significantly different than a Citroën C-Zero.

CarCynic_Banner_1 (22k image)

The C-Zero is not the only spawn resulting from the union of Mitsubishi and Citroën. The Mitsubishi Outlander is a fairly strong-selling SUV here in the United States. In Europe, the same vehicle was sold as the Citroën C-Crosser.

OutLanderandC-Crosser (45k image)
Photos from respective companies' websites.
Mitshubishi Outlander (left) and Citroën C-Crosser (right)

I say "was" because 2012 was the last year for the Citroën C-Crosser. The Citroën C4 Aircross (Which is the same as the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport) is still available is some markets. The Outlander Sport is not just a Sport version of the regular Outlander, it is a smaller, and completely different vehicle. So that is actually 3 models of Citroën vehicles you can buy here in the US.

OutLanderSportandC-Airdream (65k image)
Photos from respective companies' websites.
Citroën C-Aircross (left) and Mitsubishi Outlander Sport (right)

As with the Citroën C-Zero, there are going to be some minor differences. The interior of the Outlander, and the Outlander Sport is slightly different than their European counterparts, and there are differences in lighting and the airbags for the respective markets. (Reference this article explaining why US airbags are more dangerous than the ones for the European market).

So these cars are essentially the same as models sold in Europe with Citroën branding, but is that really an excuse to run out an buy one? Well, even for this Citronista, the answer is "No."

The Citroen C-Zero/Mitsubishi i-MiEV is a cool and innovative electric car, and my research shows that it is a superior choice over the Nissan Leaf, but unfortunately, it suffers from the same limitations and problems that all current battery powered cars suffer from. Those specific problems deserve a rather lengthy article of their own, but it basically has to do with the degradation in energy storage capacity that all current battery technologies suffer.

The Mitsubishi Outlander/Outlander Sport are free of problematic drive batteries, and overall, they are good-looking and practical SUV's. I'd take a Outlander or Outlander Sport any day over the Ford C-Max, reviewed here, but this Cynic would recommend looking at some of the alternative small or mid-sized SUV's in this category before I bought something just because in Europe there is a similar car with a couple of chevrons on it.

Posted by: carcynic on 21 April 13 @ 06:17 PM EST [Article Anchor]

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