Prototype caught testing on wintry roads features larger dimensions; will get design cues from Ami and Oli.
The Citroën C3 Aircross is being prepared to enter its second generation, with styling and construction heavily influenced by the Citroën Ami quadricycle and Citroën Oli concept car.
Seen by our spy photographers tackling icy conditions on European roads, the compact crossover is currently in an early stage of development.
As well as various ICE options, the C3 Aircross will also offer an electric powertrain for the first time, Citroën branding executive Laurent Barria confirmed previously.
He added that the car will focus on “accessibility to electric mobility”, leaning on design cues and sustainability credentials exhibited by the new Oli concept car.
Barria added that it will also be the first Citroën to wear the brand’s new logo, revealed at the end of 2022, which means an official unveiling is likely to take place this year.
Design director Pierre Leclercq has previously explained that the Ami and Oli “have to influence [Citroën] production cars”, hinting that the next Citroën models will borrow key ideas from each to begin the brand’s push for sustainability and affordability.
He said “not one” idea from the Oli concept was being dismissed as a potential candidate for production cars and that it was just a matter of timing.
When it arrives, the new C3 Aircross will likely sit on the CMP platform, which already underpins Stellantis cars including the DS 3 and Vauxhall Corsa.
The larger Citroën e-C4 currently on sale uses a 50kWh battery (with a 45kWh usable capacity), giving an official range of 353km.
Rapid-charging capabilities for the C3 Aircross EV will also be critical, because integrating the necessary hardware for that “doesn’t weigh anything compared with a battery”, according to chief executive Vincent Cobée.
While camouflage serves to distort its design, it is expected that the C3 Aircross’s design is likely to borrow cues from the Ami and Oli, such as their shared front and rear bumpers, albeit in the subtler fashion seen on the Oli.
It’s also expected to carry forward the Oli’s utilitarian overall styling, with chunky tyres and an abundance of cladding to meet customer demands.
What is visible is that the new C3 Aircross is slightly larger than the current model, with flush door handles visible (likely in order to improve aerodynamic efficiency and therefore range) and a boxier profile.
Moving to the front, a large split radiator grille is present alongside production-specification headlights with an LED daytime running strip that curves upwards and toward the windscreen much more.
At the rear, a portion of the lights are exposed to show a striped design, while the boxy bodywork makes it appear less like a crossover. A design of this type could mean more space inside for occupants and their luggage.