Citroën Berlingo Review

Gumtree Rating

4.0 rating

Before SUVs took over the world, the multi-purpose market belonged to MPVs like the Citroën Berlingo. Their goal was to shift things from A to B – be that furniture, camping gear or kids. The Berlingo (formerly the Berlingo Multispace) is a van that Citroën took and turned into a family car. It doesn’t boast the school run cachet of its SUV rivals, but for families who aren’t concerned about such things it can offer practical motoring that’s easy on the wallet. The interior can be configured in all kinds of ways to suit your particular needs. It’s a formula copied by the likes of the Peugeot Rifter (essentially the same car, rebadged) and the VW Caddy Max Life. Rivals also include car-based MPVs such as the Volkswagen Touran and Ford S-Max.

Check out the Citroën Berlingo model page to learn more and explore available cars.

What we think about the Citroën Berlingo

The Citroën Berlingo is a highly practical and versatile vehicle, and the best-value versions undercut most of its MPV rivals by a big chunk.



Superb practicality


Great value


Well equipped


Fiddly infotainment system

Some rivals are more fun to drive

Entry-level diesel is slow

The Berlingo was launched in back in 1996, along with the almost identical Peugeot Partner (latterly the Peugeot Rifter). Facelifts in 2002 and 2006 reoriented the light commercial vehicle as a people carrier, before the slightly larger second generation arrived in 2008. Facelifts to this in 2012 and 2015 overhauled the look. The third generation, launched in 2018, transformed the Berlingo into a true MPV with a quality interior. The latest model is available in M and seven-seater XL body styles. The trims are Feel, Flair and XTR, along with Rip Curl, a tie-in with the wetsuit and sportswear brand.

Driving performance of the Citroen Berlingo

Our Driving Rating7 / 10

Fitted with the 99 bhp diesel engine, the Berlingo’s decent performance at low and middle revs gives it decent towing capacity and means it’s more than capable of hauling around a family and a load of luggage. With the 109 bhp 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol under the bonnet, it will take you from 0 to 60 in 11.5 seconds, while the manual gearbox shifts smoothly. Even fully loaded, it handles nicely, even if the S-Max and the Touran beat it in this regard. The softly sprung suspension delivers a comfortable ride, and it’s pretty quiet too.

Safety and reliability of the Citroen Berlingo

Our Safety Rating7 / 10

The Berlingo received four out of five stars from Euro NCAP in 2018 (it dropped points for protection of vulnerable road users due to its tall bonnet, stiff windscreen pillars and the fact that its autonomous emergency braking system doesn’t detect cyclists). The latest model is offered with a suite of 19 driving assistance systems ranging from lane departure warning to adaptive cruise control. On earlier versions, lateral and curtain airbags and autonomous braking were optional extras. The Berlingo’s simple mechanicals should count in its favour when it comes to reliability.

Under the bonnet of the Citroen Berlingo

Our Engine Rating7 / 10

You can choose between a 1.2-litre petrol offering either 108 bhp or 128 bhp, and a 1.5-litre diesel with 99 bhp or 128 bhp. The 128 bhp Puretech 130 petrol is the most powerful of the range, and will do the best job of hauling the XL around, though its eight-speed automatic gearbox can cause some vibrations when you’re parking. In the five-seater M model, the 108 bhp petrol will feel punchy enough. The 99 bhp diesel will take 12.7 seconds to take you from 0 to 60, but it does feel surprisingly sprightly.

What you'll find in the Citroen Berlingo

Our Design Rating7 / 10

As a Citroën, the Berlingo has a bit of a quirky design ethic going on, with the signature double-decker headlights and external airbump side panels to break up the metal on the side. It’s a functional vehicle, but the current generation has brought a little more dash to the look – much needed in an era when it’s competing with butch-looking SUVs. The double chevron now extends all the way across the nose, while colourful highlights add extra character.

Comfort and interiors in the Citroen Berlingo

Our Comfort Rating9 / 10

The most notable thing about the Berlingo’s interior is the acres of space. Its 186 litres of interior storage spaces add up to more real estate than the boot of many city cars, and you can play around with the seating to fit in items of various shapes and sizes. Fold the rear seats down and it leaves a flat area you can slide things over, while the front passenger seat also folds flat if you need to fit in a long item such as a surfboard. The vehicle’s van heritage is apparent in its hardwearing interior, but textured plastics and stylish seats have given it a lift.

Citroen Belingo interior dashboard

What features you'll find in the Citroen Berlingo

Our Features Rating8 / 10

The entry-level Feel trim comes with a decent range of equipment, including a leather steering wheel, automatic headlights and wipers, air con and cruise control. Stepping up to Flair adds rear parking, individual rear seats, roof bars and alloy wheels. The 8.0-inch colour touchscreen infotainment system features DAB radio, Bluetooth, Apple Carplay and Android Auto, though it does lose out to the Touran’s in terms of ease of use. The optional Park Assist pack, with front sensors and a rear-view camera, will come in particularly handy with the longer XL model.

What fuel efficiency to expect from the Citroen Berlingo

Our Fuel Consumption Rating9 / 10

The Berlingo was designed to be cheap to run, which is why it’s fitted with the same small, efficient engines as Citroën’s superminis. Fuel economy is competitive, with the 1.2 Puretech 110 petrol returning an official figure of 43.5 mpg. The BlueHDi diesel is thriftier, getting you up to 57.4 mpg.

Running costs of the Citroen Berlingo

Our Cost Rating8 / 10

Servicing for the Berlingo is as affordable as other mainstream brands, while insurance won’t set you back too much – the various versions sit in groups 11 to 14. It should hold on to its value well too, with the average model depreciating 37% per cent in the first three years.

Our verdict of the Citroen Berlingo

4.0 rating

4 / 5 Gumtree rating

The Citroën Berlingo remains one of the most practical and best-value ways to transport a growing family and tackle the challenges of everyday life. It's a case of substance over style, but newer models have brought an added level of comfort.