Citroen Ami: Ultra-small electrical box for two people with 70 km of driving range

Citroën wants to revolutionize inner-city private transport: with its compact dimensions and plenty of space for two people, the all-electric Ami can be controlled by 16-year-olds with a scooter license.

  • 70 km range with a maximum speed of 45 km/h
  • Recharged at the socket in three hours
  • Price in France: 6,900 euros

Citroën has always had unusual ideas for cars: the minimalist 2CV, which mobilized the ’68 generation with its roller roof and hinged windows as “duck”, the “goddess” DS, which could not be missing in any French gangster film with its streamlined shape, or the inexpensive high roof combination Berlingo, which encouraged many young families to have a second child.

The new Ami is also bold and innovative, an urban, purely electric model with a range of up to 70 kilometers and a top speed of 45 km/h can be controlled by anyone who is at least 16 years old and holds a class AM driving license. For Citroën it is a real alternative to public transport, two-wheelers or e-scooters.

Crunchy short with room for two

The symmetrical box design of the new Ami is inspired by the Ami One Concept, which Citroën presented in 2019 at the Geneva Motor Show. The wide doors on the left and right have been adopted from the concept car and can be opened in the opposite direction: in opposite directions on the driver’s side for easier entry and greater comfort and classic on the passenger’s side.

The design of the bumpers and the lower body area is repeated on both the front and rear of the vehicle. And the distinctive light signature of the headlights and indicators is also picked up by the rear lights. The effect: The Ami looks almost the same at the front and back – at least it takes getting used to.

You also have to like the color because there is no choice: Ami blue is the basic color of the plastic body. However, depending on the individualization package, you can customize your city car with color accents on the rims and on the capsule at the lower end of the door and with stickers on the fenders and wheels in gray, blue, orange or khaki.

Lots of space inside the Ami

The four colors are also important for the interior, because when naked, the Ami is anything but cozy with plenty of black hard plastic. If you want it to be nice, you have to personalize the Ami to your liking with easily self-installing accessories in these colors. The accessory set contains several decorative elements : a central dividing net, a storage net for the door, a mat, a storage compartment on the dashboard, a small hook for a handbag and a smartphone clip.

The sliding driver’s seat and permanently installed passenger seat are arranged asymmetrically to offer the occupants more space and freedom of movement. Above all, the rear-seated passenger has enormous legroom (the space in front of him is good as storage space), but always feels a bit like sitting on a back seat because it is clearly positioned behind the passenger door.

The feeling of space in the heated interior is still extremely spacious – also because of the large glass surfaces with the standard panoramic roof. But logical: With the ultra-compact dimensions (length: 2.41 meters, width: 1.39 meters, height: 1.52 meters) compromises have to be made – with the Ami it is the storage space.

In addition to the space in front of the passenger, for which there will be specially designed bags, smaller things can only be stowed behind the door nets or behind the driver’s seat, because the Ami does not have a trunk.

Fast charging in three hours

With a range of up to 70 kilometers, a top speed of 45 km/h and compact dimensions with a turning circle of only 7.20 meters, the Ami is ideally suited for everyday city traffic. The range is not abundant, but higher than the average daily distance traveled by urban residents – the Ami is probably not suitable for rural mobility.

The 5.5 kWh lithium-ion battery installed flat under the floor can be easily charged using the integrated charging cable located in the passenger door. After plugging the cable with a Schuko plug into a conventional 220-volt socket, the vehicle needs around three hours to fully charge. With an adapter, it can also be charged at a public charging station or wall box – but it doesn’t get any faster because of the limited charging capacity.

The Ami may be driven as a light motor vehicle in Germany by anyone who is at least 16 years old and has an AM licensedisposes. Since the AM class is included in every driver’s license with the exception of the L license, almost all license holders can use it, including senior citizens or image-conscious business people for their professional appointments in the city.

Smart sales concepts

Citroën partners and selected sales outlets also show the Ami in their showrooms, but the main sales channel is via the Internet. Customers can configure and buy the Ami on the Internet. All steps, from searching to ordering, can be done online from the comfort of your sofa or tablet. For maintenance there is then a specific network of independent certified repair shops and Citroën partners.

Using the online tool, you can choose between three different forms of use at the click of a mouse: car sharing, leasing or purchase.

The period for car sharing ranges from one minute to one day. The Ami can be rented in selected countries as part of the Free2Move car sharing from as little as EUR 0.26 per minute. That is roughly the total cost of an e-scooter. But you don’t get wet with the Ami and you can also take your buddy with you.

Long-term leasing is usually worthwhile for professional use. In France, the Ami is available from a monthly leasing rate of 19.99 euros.

The price for the cash purchase for Germany has not yet been determined. In France, the Ami costs 6900 euros, of which the state then pays 900 euros to promote e-mobility. By the way, there is no electric bonus for small electric vehicles in Germany: the federal government believes that the competitive price has already been established due to the low price.

Orders started in France on March 30, 2020 and will be delivered in June. The other countries and Germany will follow in the course of the year – when is not yet clear.

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