I fancied something different and back in early 1990s the Citroen XM then as now was a pretty unique car and stood out from the crowd.I really needed an estae version but they were very hard to find and after seeing a few saloons and realising that you had a large hatch,seats in the back that folded down,well I persuaded myself the saloon could work.I was tired of my old Renault Savanna 21 and a change is as good as a rest or so they say. I found a mint 1989/1990 G reg,it was about 3 years old,dark metallic grey (most popular colour appart from burgandy metallic) smart cloth interior,I think it was black and it had had one owner with 35000 miles on the clock,very nice for £4500,a bargain. Citroens depreciate badly,thats the way it is,don't know why as I love something a bit different and hate boring cars.This one sat low down at rest,get in turn the key and it would fire up instantly,the dark space age dash would come to life like the bridge on the Starship Enterprise,at the same time the car elevates,rising up ready for take off,very weird.It lets off little "psfart" noises and clicks now and again,again wierd. The ride is magical,magic carpet,smoothing out the bumps,come to think of it I may have been flying somekind of hovercraft 3 foot off the ground as it was so smooth.The handling for a front wheel drive was impressive,it took alot to swing it off balance and the brakes were other worldly,ABS magic but watch out for the car too close behind! The performance from my 2 litre was good,not rocket fast but progressive like a train and felt it would keep getting faster with that aerodynamic shape,I am sure they could have put a much more powerful unit like the old Maserati Citroen the SM,that would have been something eh? It was however deeply flawed,it leaked LHM green stuff from the suspension,not sure where it was never obvious but needed topping up alot.The electronics were unreliable,"WARNING CAPTAIN ALIENS!" No not really it would light up like a christmas tree for no reason telling me to stop immediately and go to my Citroen dealer.I stopped looked under the bonnet found nothing wrong and carried on wit no trouble.The dealer did tell me that the early XM models have fault with the wiring loom,its too short and over time rubs against the back of the dash giving false readings,don't worry he said take no notice! This was very worrying,a recepie for disaster,dodgy wiring could mean a fire waiting to happen? It was expensive to run,I had an XJS at the same time and this was supposed to be cheaper to run than a V12 Jag,but not by much! Ok on fuel it did around mid 20s to 30mpg positively frugal but it needed a few bits and bobs like part of an exhaust that cost £300 ( a non Citroen pattern item at that,a half price job compared with main dealer) Lots of LHM fluid,I think that was costing me £10 per month,it soon adds up. I realised it was a complicated piece of kit that could all go wrong horribly,so I chickened out of keeping it too long I had ran the miles up to almost 60K in 10 months so time to go. Not sure if I would recommend this car to anyone but the brave,I believe later revised models post 93 or 94 are better built with a few improvements so best go for one of those.They do mega miles though,I viewed some cars on dealers forecourts with 150,000 miles and more that looked perfect,very scarey,maybe they are built on Mars? Thanks for reading my review and I hope you found it interesting.If this has been useful to you and you take time to leave Your rating it will be appreciated and hope you will take a look at my other reviews sometime.I also leave reviews on the Ciao website about this and other items,many thanks!
My eye was recently caught by an article about a couple who got married, only to later discover that they were really twins who had been separated at birth. Naturally, this being the Evening Standard, there was a two page spread on it, in which many people with names such as 'Professor Lord Alton' advised on the best way for the shocked readers to aoid marrying their own siblings. Quite how they managed to waffle on about this for two pages I shall never know, but apparently we are attracted to a partner who has the same features as us - hence the twins being attracted to each other. This got me thinking: surely the same should apply to cars? Bankers, the dull kind who you wouldn't want to have round to dinner, always buy BMWs, because both car and driver are conformist and devoid of any kind of real interest or depth. They also weigh a lot more then they did twenty years ago! Rich young actresses and heiresses buy Ferraris and Lamborghinis, because they both like showing off and cost an awful lot to maintain. Who, then, would have bought a Citroen XM? Generally, Citroen's quirky cars and interesting styling mean that they're bought by quirky and interesting people, who have lots of imagination and don't care much for brand names. But the XM? Well, from the outside, it's a stunner. Even now, 19 years after it was first put on the production line, it looks futuristic. The long bonnet, the floating roof, even the brake lights look good. You then take a tentative glance through the windows, expecting, because this is a Citroen, to be greeted by cloth seats, and e-z fix everything. This car, however, wasn't aimed at the budget buyer. It was launched as Citroen's flagship car, aimed to successfully compete with the dominating Germans. Therefore, there are swathes of supple leather, alcantara and the most comfortable looking seats you could think of. This is great - any passer-by will think that you have a great deal of imagination, that you're both interesting and also have a successful career. Unfortunately, this thought soon stops once you settle yourself down in the driver's seat. This car has to have one of the worst dashboards in history - it's literally, and I'm not exaggerating here, just plastic. It's not even multi-coloured plastic: it's all black, every single thing in this car is black. "That's fine", you think, "that long bonnet surely hides a very powerful engine", well, that, like the rest of this car, is an illusion. You get a choice of engines, and the range topper is a 3.0 litre V6. Note here that the current range topper in the Audi A6 is a 5.2 litre V10, and yes, I know that the XM is much older, but for a car this weight and aimed at the market the big Citroen was, a 3.0 litre V6 simply isn't enough (not to mention the fact that it had a tendency to blow up!). The feel-less steering, and the fact that the radio seems to inexplicably beep every few miles just add to your disappointment. Yes, it's a good mile-eater; the seating's reasonably comfortable and there's good legroom, but it's hurricane-loud inside at motorway speeds. The francophile European Commissioners used to have XM's outside the Berlaymont in Brussels - but they soon moved back to their Mercedes and BMWs once they discovered the terrible reliability. James Dyson also bought an XM. However, while Mr. Dyson most definitely is quirky and interesting, he is also successful so he got rid of it as soon as he could. Interestingly, the only person in the whole wide world who actually kept a Citroen XM for any length of time is my dad (ten years so far and counting). I'm starting to fear he's not as successful as I once thought...
My XM was only a couple of years old when I bought it - it was the top of the range model with leather seats etc. etc. and was a real pleasure to drive. Yes, it did drink the petrol a bit, but it was after all a huge car, and as I bought it in order to carry goods for my job, it was ideal for the purpose. Had a lot of fun in this car and it was relatively trouble-free for most of my ownership. The funky handbrake was a real novelty; a bit tricky to get used to but when I had got used to it, I found it much more efficient than traditional handbrakes on other cars. After a while, the ride became bumpy; the garage said the spheres had gone. The estimate of £1,000 to fix it was just more money than I had, so the car had to go, much to my disappointment, into part exchange for a smaller car which was at least roadworthy. I really miss my XM and would definitely have another one!
Just over a year ago, my beloved XM 2.0i suffered a heart attack at 5.15 am on the way in to work. We limped in but the garage said it was terminal, a piston ring had gone and scored out a cylinder so badly that it had gone oval. It was a testament to the strength of the car that it had probably been going on for a couple of months yet I had not noticed. Reluctantly, I parted company with her after nine years for a paltry £100 for the good parts that were left on her. I'd fallen in love with the shape and decided I wanted one. I already owned a BX 1.9GT so knew what I was letting myself in for with a Citroen. The XM proved to be a typical example of the breed. No handbrake (foot pedal and dashboard release handle); suspension to die for and handling, especially in the sports mode, that was equivalent to that of a Lotus. I could reverse park it up a kerb and uphill into a space no more than 6 inches longer than the car; a considerable feat when you consider the width of the car. She did cost a lot to run towards the end, new spheres all round, parking brake cable (expensive as it feeds all round the steering column and is a very long job for the price of the part) and she was just about to acquire a new radiator. Earlier in her life she had suffered a cracked exhaust manifold and the timing belt needs replacing every 40000 miles or so. Also, I had to have a collar fitted to one of the spark plug threads as I accidentally cross-threaded a plug. Being an alloy head, it wasn't long before the plug was spat out. The only rust on her after 11 years was in one corner of the sunroof (factory) and a small bit around the door drains. I would give anything to have her back, she'd only done 77 000 miles, bless her. The Independent recently said that the XM was destined to become a modern classic, being as it was, one of the last true eccentric and eclectic Citroens. You should be able to get a decent one for under a grand, a V6 for about 3-5. They do not hold their value at all but be sure to get one with a history. Check for serious leaks in the hydraulic system, especially the brake feeder pipes. Dribbles are acceptable but always keep a bottle of green LHM fluid in the boot. Postscript: I've heard recently that she is alive and well and living near Brands Hatch near a colleague of mine. I hope he realises he's got a bargain. I couldn't imagine her at the breakers.
I have owned an XM for 4 years now, it was 6 year old when I bought It. This has to be one of the most mis-understood cars ever manufactured. If you look at the second hand prices, you can buy a Citroen XM ( the biggest car citroen produce) for less money than an equivilent age, condition and mileage Citroen AX,or Saxo (which are the smallest cars Citroen produce). As far as I can tell this is because the motor industry/buying public do not understand the suspension system, however this rarely goes wrong and is often cheaper to replace all of the suspension spheres (of which there are 7 in an XM) than it is to replace 4 shock absorbers in a conventionaly sprung car. The key to owning an XM is finding a Local independent specialist that knows about Citroens. Never go to a Main dealer, they will charge about 4 times the odds for any servicing or repair work. It is best to avoid the series 1 cars (pre 1994) as they had some dodgy earth/electrics which are annoying. THE best value second hand car on the market. New XM's can be bought for considerably less than list price now (about 20-30%) as they are running the stock down.
I am very surprised that no one has bothered to write an opinion about this wonderful vehicle. I have owned a citren XM for a number of years, and find that it is one of the best cars in ints class. The XM is a large family saloon, almost,I would say, in the executive class. It is very roomy, extremely comfortable, and a joy to drive. The power steering makes for ease of handling you don't expect from such a big car. Ok, the boot space is not enormous, but that said, it is very adequate for most purposes ( it will hold about fifteen full tesco bags ). The rear seats will fold down to give a very large space for transporting of bigger articles. The suspension is typically french, soft and very comfortabl. If however, you want to throw it around a bit, just flicking a switch sets the suspension into 'sport' mode, a little less comfortable, but in this mode it doesn't half hug the road. The petrol versions can be a bit thirsty, but I would recommend the turbo diesel for economy with power. All in all, A very nice car