The Citroen Xsara is a small family car produced by French automaker Citroen from 1997 to 2006.
Like its predecessor, the Citroen ZX, the Xsara shares running gear with the Peugeot 306.
It came in three and five-door hatchback and five-door estate body styles; the estate was marketed as the Break and the three-door as the Coupé. The straight-4 engine range includes 1.4, 1.6, 1.8 and 2.0-litre petrol engines as well as 1.6, 1.9 and 2.0-litre turbodiesels, and in some countries, a 1.5-litre TUD diesel engine
The Xsara was 1998 Semperit Irish Car of the Year in Ireland.
The original Xsara was launched in 1997, and was available with different engine choices:
1.4L (1361 cc 8-valve SOHC) 55 kW (75 PS; 74 hp) TU3JP 4-cylinder petrol 111 N·m
1.6L (1587 cc) 66 kW (90 PS; 89 hp) TU5JP 4-cylinder petrol 136 N·m
1.8L (1761 cc) 66 kW (90 PS; 89 hp) XU7JB 4-cylinder petrol
1.8L (1761 cc) 76 kW (103 PS; 102 hp) XU7JP 4-cylinder petrol
1.8L (1761 cc 16-valve DOHC) 82 kW (110 hp) XU7JP4 4-cylinder petrol 155 N·m
2.0L (1998 cc) 92 kW (125 PS; 123 hp) XU10J2C 4-cylinder petrol
2.0L (1998 cc 16-valve DOHC) 99 kW (135 PS; 133 hp) XU10J4R 4-cylinder petrol
2.0L (1998 cc 16-valve DOHC) 122 kW (166 PS; 164 hp) XU10J4RS 4-cylinder petrol (used in Xsara VTS)
1.9L (1905 cc) 50 kW (68 PS; 67 hp) XUD9A diesel
1.9L (1868 cc) 51 kW (69 PS; 68 hp) DW8 diesel
1.9L (1905 cc) 55 kW (75 PS; 74 hp) XUD9B SD diesel
1.9L (1905 cc) 66 kW (90 PS; 89 hp) XUD9TE turbodiesel
2.0L (1997 cc) 66 kW (90 PS; 89 hp) DW10TD turbodiesel
In 2000 the Xsara was facelifted; the car was now stiffer (so safety and handling improved), had a new front design and some interior modifications (i.e.: new steering wheel). The facelift also saw the introduction of multiplex wiring. However, the wiring used was too thin, resulting in multiple wires breaking with frequent use, especially in the driver’s door, thereby rendering the driver’s door window, central locking and interior lights unusable.
Citroen do not acknowledge this as a problem, and do not issue door wiring harnesses as a spare. New 1.6i and 2.0i 16-valve engines were being introduced and 1.8L were removed. Now Xsara is offered with following engine choices:
1.4L (1361 cc 8-valve SOHC) 55 kW (74 hp) TU3JP 4-cylinder petrol 121 N·m (catalyst and itsposition were changed). This 1.4 model is prone to sudden engine stalling when de-clutching, but Citroen do not acknowledge this problem exists.
1.6L (1587 cc 16-valve DOHC) 81 kW (109 hp) TU5JP4 4-cylinder petrol (new, replaced 8-valve TU5JP engine)
2.0L (1998 cc 16-valve DOHC) 122 kW (164 hp) XU10J4RS 4-cylinder petrol (used till 2002)
2.0L (1998 cc 16-valve DOHC) 101 kW (135 hp) EW10J4 4-cylinder petrol (new, replaced XU10 engine)
1.4L (1398 cc) HDI 50 KW 68 PS DW4TD 01. 2004–31.12.2004
1.9L (1868 cc) 51 kW (69 PS; 68 hp) DW8 diesel (used till 2002)
1.9L (1868 cc) 53 kW (72 PS; 71 hp) DW8B diesel (new)
2.0L (1997 cc) 66 kW (90 PS; 89 hp) DW10TD turbodiesel (catalyst was changed, later central silencer was removed)
2.0L (1997 cc) 79 kW (107 PS; 106 hp) DW10ATED turbodiesel (new)
In line with other models from the same company at the time, the Xsara largely sold on price because of stiff competition from the class leader, the Renault Scenic.
The 2002 model had slight interior modifications (i.e.: a different way of controlling the sound system from the steering wheel). In 2003 there were also some exterior modifications (i.e.: new front bumper).
The Xsara hatchback was discontinued and replaced by the C4 in late 2004. The Xsara continues to be produced for the Chinese market by Dongfeng Peugeot-Citroën Automobile, a joint venture with the PSA Group.
The Xsara Picasso small MPV was continued, concurring its successors.
The Xsara World Rally Car, based on the road-going Xsara hatchback but ultimately having very little resemblance to it under the skin, was one of the most successful cars ever to compete in the World Rally Championship. In 1999, Citroen Xsara Kit Car placed 1st overall in Tour de Course and Catalunya Rally. This car was considered the best car in the class.
Philipe Bulgaski placed 7th overall and won the Kit Car F2 class. In 2001, Kit Cars category disappeared and was replaced by Super 1600 and Super 2000. Citroen Xsara competed on category World Rally Car. In 2002, Sébastien Loeb was going to win the Monte Carlo Rally but he was given a penalty because of illegal change of the tyre. But it took later on Detuschland Rally.
In 2003, the Citroen Xsara has been more competitive. In Wales GB, the leader Richard Burns suffered a blackout and withdrew the rally. Sébastien loeb made a lot of mistakes on last round and unfortunaley, he lost the last round and lost the championship by just one point.
However, the Citroen got the manufacteurs title and 2004, the Champion of the World Sébastien loeb won the championship. The car took Frenchman Sébastien Loeb to 28 rally wins, three consecutive Driver’s Championship titles from 2004 to 2006, and Citroën to three consecutive Manufacturer’s Championship titles in 2003, 2004, and 2005.
Although it is the Frenchman who has proved the archetype Xsara WRC pilot virtually since its 2001 conception, Jesús Puras, Carlos Sainz and François Duval are the other drivers to have won.
2003 world champion Petter Solberg drove a 2006-spec Xsara for the majority of the 2009 season, which was entered by his own Petter Solberg World Rally Team.