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Citroen C3 YOU (2020 - 2023)

At £13,995 it is the most affordable Citroen passenger car on the market and one that certainly rivals the entry-level Dacia Sandero.

Starting price:

Why we love it:
  • Excellent pricing at less than £14k
  • Stylish good looks and comfy to drive
  • Cheaper than any other C3 models in the range
Where it could be better:
  • Quite basic inside and engine is noisy when pushed
  • Dated touchscreen sticking out from the dash
  • Exclusively available online only


Citroen C3 YOU

When Citroen ditched it’s affordable C1 city car from its line-up last year, it seemed that we were no longer going to see any budget superminis from the French carmaker. But fast forward a few months and there was news of a new lead-in C3 trim called You, which last year cost just £12,999.

Admittedly the 2023 model’s price has crept up an extra £1,000, but it’s still a very attractive and affordable option for anyone on a slightly tighter budget. And at £13,995 it is the most affordable Citroen passenger car on the market and one that certainly rivals the entry-level Dacia Sandero.

They are not available via traditional showrooms, but instead customers will need to go online to the Citroen Store where they can personalise the car to taste or select finance packages that best suit their needs.

Citroen C3 YOU

The Citroen C3 YOU is a funky looking compact five-door hatchback that is very easy on the eye. Design cues on our test car included Soft Sand paintwork, LED headlights with LED daytime running lights, tinted side windows, a 3D rear light signature, Polar White fog light surrounds, ‘YOU’ stickers, body-coloured front and rear bumpers, lots of chrome decorative trim, matt black B pillars and 15-inch steel wheels.

Moving inside, the spacious cabin is quite minimalist in its design and layout with comfortable cloth seats featuring neat decorative stitching. Both the driver’s seat and steering wheel can be manually adjusted to find the ideal driving position and all controls and readouts are well positioned for ease of use on the move.

There is a fair amount of hard plastic throughout the cabin which could prove prone to scratching over time, but it’s still bright and cheery. Creature comforts include a huge driver information display behind the steering wheel that offers all the vital performance data, along with a somewhat dated, tiny five-inch black and white touchscreen that protrudes from the dashboard. This is where the DAB radio is controlled from and there is a USB port to connect a smartphone for media streaming via Bluetooth.

All the climate control functions are located in a separate panel below this touchscreen.

On The Road

Citroen C3 YOU

Handling & Performance

The C3 in You specification is only available with one powertrain set-up, a three-cylinder, 2.0-litre PureTech petrol engine delivering 82bhp of power and 118Nm of torque. It’s matched to a five-speed manual gearbox and can complete the 0-62mph dash in 12.5 seconds and maxes out at 103mph.

Admittedly, it’s not the sharpest out the starting blocks but, then again, it was never meant to be. This is a budget, five-door car not a hot hatch.

That said; the performance is still impressive with decent handling and enough power on tap to cope with 70mph motorway jaunts as well as tackling twisting country lanes. There is a fair amount of body lean if pushed too hard into tighter bends, but on the whole, this little C3 drives nicely enough.

The steering is quite light which is a bonus in busy town centres where lots of manoeuvring is necessary, but not quite so reassuring out on the faster roads. However, the all-round visibility is good and that’s a vital plus-point on a car that will likely feature on the dreaded school run.

You can expect to feel some jolts and bumps from our pitted roads along the way, but the C3 YOU is comfortable to drive with a slightly elevated driving position.

It may sound like we are pulling this car to pieces with niggly criticisms, whereas that’s not our intention. For the outlay, it performs well above its price grade.

Citroen C3 YOU

Space & Practicality

The five-door C3 You is a compact five-door supermini that has room up front for a couple of six footers and enough space in the back for a trio of youngsters. Any adults sitting in the rear will find their knees brushing up against the front seats and the middle occupant will need to straddle a large central hump.

The car stretches 3,996mm in length, is 1,829mm wide (without mirrors), 2,007mm (with mirrors) and 1,474mm tall with a wheelbase of 2,539mm.

The boot is accessed via a manual tailgate and has room for 300 litres of goodies, a limit that increases to 992 litres with the 60:40 split-folding rear seats dropped flat.

In addition, there are a number of handy storage options scattered throughout the cabin, including a glovebox, door bins, trays and quite shallow cup holders – two in the front and one in the rear.

There are ISOFIX fittings to secure a child seat to the outer rear seats and the car is packed with a generous array of safety systems and driver assistance aids.


Citroen C3 YOU

Running Costs

The Citroen C3 You is the entry grade model in the company’s supermini line-up with a starting price of £13,995. As you move up through the trims, you will find C-Series Edition costing from £17,990, Elle from £19,120 and Shine Plus specification priced from £22,790.

While all the other grades are offered with a choice of powertrains and transmissions, the C3 You is only sold with a 2.0-litre, three-cylinder PureTech engine matched to a five-speed manual gearbox.

Under WLTP testing, the car can deliver fuel efficiency ranging from 48.5 to 54.3mpg with a carbon emissions figure of 123g/km. This CO2 output would result in a first-year road tax (Vehicle Excise Duty) charge of £210 dropping to the standard annual fee of £180 after the first 12 months.

For any business drivers out there considering the Citroen C3 You as a company car, it has a Benefit in Kind tax rating of 29 per cent and the car, as tested, sits in insurance group 14.

The car comes with Citroen’s three years or 60,000-mile warranty as standard.

But anyone hoping to snap up a Citroen C3 You in their local showroom  will need a different approach as it’s exclusively on sale online.


Citroen C3 YOU

Cars that were once affordable to people with a limited budget are becoming few and far between these days and that’s why we always welcome any new models that fit that criteria.

And the C3 You does just that. Yes, it has its faults and the refinement levels are not brilliant, but apart from one or two rivals, you would struggle to get so much car for so little outlay. 

By Maxine Ashford
Oct 04, 2023

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