Since I was young I have always had a passion for cars, so I knew as soon as I was 17 I wanted to be driving on the roads. I bought my first car in May 2016 even though I was not 17 until July, this meant that on my birthday I had a car to drive and practice in to save money on lessons (something I’d recommend to all learners). I passed my practical driving test within a month of turning 17 so I’d definitely recommend getting a car you can practice in.
One of my dad’s friends has his own car garage so we popped in to see him and I bought a little red Citroen C1, not something that would have been my first choice. But I was sold on the low insurance, good fuel economy and dinky dimensions meaning it would be a breeze to park.
The Citroen C1 is a great car for new drivers or someone who just wants a simple, turn the key and go. There is no complicated tech or crazy handbrakes, everything is very ‘old school’. The C1’s small body meant that when I started learning to drive I felt in control, it wasn’t a huge car where I didn’t feel comfortable on the road or parking, quite the opposite.
The C1 MK1 comes in three main trim levels; Vibe, Rhythm and Code. The Vibe trim is very basic; wind up windows, no central locking, basic seats and non body coloured bumpers, door handles and mirrors. Step up to the Rhythm model (which is the C1 I had) and you get remote central locking, electric windows and body coloured mirrors, bumpers and door handles. The Code trim adds leather seats, a leather gear stick, alloy wheels and chrome touches around the cabin. For me, remote central locking is a must so I’d recommend stepping up to the Rhythm model, plus the seats are super comfy!
The C1 is a whiz to drive, although its like driving a tin can (I’ll get onto that point later) it is quite fun, it holds the road well for such a small car and you can have a little bit of fun nipping around in this city car!
As mentioned before, the C1 build quality is like a tin can, with exposed metal panels, a clutch pedal that feels like it will fall off and getting blown into another lane in windy weather- I did feel nervous about driving this car long distance. It was a great car to learn to drive in, but I would not recommend this car to someone who does a lot of miles, you certainly won’t feel very safe. But for a young driver it is a great start to the driving world.