Take one Citroën Dispatch van, add massive side windows, extra seats and better than merely utilitarian trim and ‘voila!’ – you have the Citroen SpaceTourer MPV people carrier.
Ideal for larger families, with comfortable seating for up to nine, this all-new model also has the taxi trade and work teams as key target markets.
Built on the same platform as the Expert, from sister company Peugeot, and the Toyota Proace, this all-new model offers plenty of options, including three body lengths, from 4.6m to 5.3m.
Inside, passengers take precedence over their baggage, with generous head, leg and shoulder room, and a good level of creature comforts, but the load area is quite small, that is until you lower the seat backs to give a useful 2,381 litres of luggage space.
Sound insulation is not the finest, with bangs and rattles resonating, though engine noise is reasonably restrained. A comprehensive list of standard equipment is good, including remote central locking, hill start assist, cruise control, parking sensors, LED daytime running lights, ISOFIX child seat mountings and a USB port.
We tested the diesel version, which comes with a lusty four-cylinder turbo engine and, with diligent attention to what our right feet were doing, we both managed to get close to the 53.3 mpg claimed combined cycle fuel consumption figure.
Top speed is guesstimated at 106 mph, with an 11 seconds 0-62-mph acceleration figure. Gear changes are smooth and the six-speed transmission’s ratios are well spaced.
There is also the offer of a long-wheelbase version with extra carrying capacity for those business customers who will at times need to use the vehicle as a workhorse or to ferry their workers. Be warned, however, the XL is difficult to fit into many marked parking bays.
It’s true that the SpaceTourer driving experience is more akin to being at the wheel of a van than a family saloon and the suspension errs on the hard side but if lots of space and versatility are of key importance then this latest Citroën will tick a few boxes, despite the eye-wateringly high £31,130 ticket price which rocketed to £34,000 when such add-ons as metallic paint, Xenon headlights and augmented seating.
Roger St. Pierre is a seasoned professional travel and motoring writer and editor with over 40 years in the industry and one of our regular contributors.
Photographs courtesy of Citroën UK