The Citroen that Could

by Sunday, 11 August 2013

Or sometimes almost not in this case. 


I mentioned the Citroen that we borrowed in an earlier post.  I would like to disclose more about it now that time has passed and I've processed most of the memories of my trip to Europe as positive.  You see, driving this Citroen is like that girlfriend/boyfriend you had for a couple months; never quite right, but fun nonetheless.


The Citroen C4 Picasso; its french, its a bubble, its not so adorable.  Let me tell you the tale of our trip from Stuttgart to Munich where we left off.  At this point the rear passengers are not quite happy.  The back seats don't recline much and they're definitely not used to any sort of real dampening on a car. Munich Surfing

  I'm not particularly pleased either since the car has the worst bits of driving an auto and a manual.  How is this possible?  Let's start with 2 details: the shift points in auto mode is setup for city (not Autobahn), and there's no power between 0RPM and 1800RPM because the car is a 1.4litre turbo Diesel.  To get any power you have to keep it in its narrow power band between 2000 RPM and 3500 RPM.  At least it has paddle shifters! (sort of....)  The paddle shifters are not of the F1 or Ferrari sort or even Subaru manumatic sort.  It is of the French variety.  Think slow food.


  So why does this make for a terrible combination?  You have to continuously shift using the paddles to keep it in power while the shift itself is neither fun nor fast.  Not only that, you have to remember to clutch the power to keep the shifts smooth.  So why the hell didn't we get a manual?


  By the time we arrive in Munich, the entire family has decided that we've had enough of this car.  Weird vibrations at 60~70mph, not so great acceleration, terrible suspension, and to top it off the non-reclining rear seats.  Talk about first world problems!  We return the damn thing. Swiss Views

  Or so we thought.  This is where the nightmare begins (for my dad).  We eventually find out that since the rental company was in France and not in Germany (though they are the same brand) could not accept the car back.


FUN STUFF!  So in the end, we get our Citroen back.


With caution, we drive through Germany to Switzerland back to France in this little not-quite-wagon-hatch-back thing made in France.

 Swiss Countryside

You see the French are not good at everything.  They might have good food, fine wine, expensive fashion and pretty people but not cars.


Good bye Citroen.  I hope to never see you again, but it was a lot of fun.  Thanks!

Note: I've inserted fun pictures in between of the places that the Citroen got us to successfully.Back in France



Ryuhei Yokokawa is a Seattle-based web-developer.

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