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Citroen Progressive Hydraulic Cushions Replace Hydropneumatic Suspension

It’s official, ladies and gentlemen. The hydropneumatic suspension designed by Paul Mages and used by various Citroen models since the 1950s will be replaced by progressive hydraulic cushions. The French manufacturer put the new technology to the test in the Citroen Advanced Comfort.
Citroen Advanced Comfort prototype and Citroen progressive hydraulic cushions 3 photos
Citroen Advanced Comfort prototype and Citroen progressive hydraulic cushionsCitroen progressive hydraulic cushions
“The what?” you may be wondering. As simply put as possible, the Citroen Advanced Comfort is a C4 Cactus with hydropneumatic suspension instead of MacPherson struts at the front and a torsion beam at the rear. Our friends over at Automobile Magazine got in the driver's seat of the said prototype and the feedback can be summed up in two words: thumbs up. Yup, it’s that good, even on the most jittery of roads.

The question is, what makes the progressive hydraulic cushions such a big improvement over Hydractive 3+, the final iteration of the French carmaker’s hydropneumatic suspension? Other than the fact that it replaces the bump stops in a coil-over unit with secondary dampers (progressive hydraulic cushions), the new technology is cheaper than hydropneumatic suspension.

Approximately 20 patents have been applied by Citroen for the progressive hydraulic cushions, which is saying something about the effort that went into development. In a bid to redefine the magic carpet ride of the Hydractive, the French manufacturer tuned the progressive hydraulic cushions in such a way that the technology replicates the Hydroactive feel without any of the spills.

I could get all technical about how it works, but Citroen still keeps its lips sealed about many aspects of the progressive hydraulic cushions. Then again, I can tell you that the C4 Cactus-based Citroen Advanced Comfort prototype is a promising first step. The first production car to adopt the revolutionary technology will be launched in late 2017. And yes, Citroen is going to share its suspension system to DS and Peugeot.

In theory, the system can be applied to all models, from the C1 up to whatever flagship Citroen is building these days. But then again, the bean counters will have the last word about which model is getting it.


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