If you need a family-sized five-seat MPV but don't necessarily want one, then if your budget points you towards choosing one from the 2016-2018 period, you could look straight to this car, the improved more efficient and more sophisticated second generation Citroen C4 Picasso. It's extravagantly designed and comes with some genuinely innovative features. The basics of space, safety and cost-effectiveness are all taken care of, but where this model really excels is in the other things: style, technology and a very emotive feel. By People Carrying standards, it's a bit special.
The Picasso name launched both a generation of art and a several generations of small Citroen people carrier. The great Spaniard's family fell out with each other over the decision to grant this French car maker use of Senor Pablo's famous moniker, but it was all certainly worth the legal wrangling for Citroen. By 2016, the brand had racked up over three million Picasso MPV sales since launch in 1999 of the original Xsara Picasso model. In 2007, that People Carrier was replaced by a far more modern successor, the C4 Picasso, a car that in 2013 was re-launched in a more futuristic second generation guise. It's the revised version of this MK2 model that we're going to look at here as a potential used buy.
It's tempting to think of MPV people carriers as one of the most boring sectors of car design, boxes on wheels with little wit or verve to their execution. In this case though, things are very different. Yes, what we have here is a box with wheels at each corner, but as any kid at Christmas will tell you, not all boxes are created equal. It may have been designed to go head to head with five-seat MPV rivals such as the Ford C-MAX and the Renault Scenic but in some ways, this MK2 C4 Picasso feels cut from rather different cloth. Emboldened by the success of their boutique DS line of cars, Citroen decided to inject a measure of style and desirability into many of its other wares and this design certainly benefitted, looking like something that's just driven off a motor show stand.
It's also available in seven-seat Grand C4 Picasso guise, but it's the five-seat body style that we're going to concentrate on here. This variant's most significant rivals - those Scenic and C-MAX models - were considerably improved in this period, so in mid-2016, Citroen substantially upgraded this car to keep it competitive. There were minor styling changes, greater opportunities for interior personalisation, new generation connectivity options and, perhaps most significantly, two fresh petrol engines to try and balance the previous sales bias towards diesel power. This car sold until Spring 2018, when it was re-launched as the 'C4 Space Tourer'.