The VTS is gone! Withdrawals begin....
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  1. #1
    Fellow Frogger! ivanc4vts's Avatar
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    Default The VTS is gone! Withdrawals begin....

    After having it advertised for 4.5 months, the red VTS finally sold ! The withdrawal now begins... i happily sold it to another french car nut, who incidentally was the first buyer that ever came too look at it back in november who turned up in a white C4 Exclusive Unfortunately he didn't want to just swap with me cause his wife would have killed him...
    Still have to get another car though and i'm lookin for something cheap! Withdrawal begins.... There are two Xantias for under 5k on carsales that have just over 100,000km on the clock hmmm...... at least i want to try them. What is the difference SX and IMAGE?

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  2. #2
    1000+ Posts Greg C's Avatar
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    Very little I think. The big difference is between SX and VSX or SX and Exclusive for the later S2 cars and that is Hydractive suspension. i.e. 4 sphere as opposed to 6 sphere suspension

    I would recommend a Xantia, they are a very nice machine to drive, very different to a C4 VTS though. Both ours are over 200,000km and still going strong
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  3. #3
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    Xsara'a are in that price range and less trouble than a Xantia. Even a VTS might just creep in.

    Make sure you know about the front strut rubbers, ZF vs AL4 gearboxes and Hydractive vs non-Hydractive suspension. The simplest Xantia is an early 8 Valve manual with non-Hydractive suspension. You could compare several in one go at Continental Cars as they use them as loan cars.

  4. #4
    Fellow Frogger! ivanc4vts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg C View Post
    Very little I think. The big difference is between SX and VSX or SX and Exclusive for the later S2 cars and that is Hydractive suspension. i.e. 4 sphere as opposed to 6 sphere suspension

    I would recommend a Xantia, they are a very nice machine to drive, very different to a C4 VTS though. Both ours are over 200,000km and still going strong
    So you are saying that they are all hydropneumatic however there are ones with hydractive suspension vs non-hydractive? What's the difference between the two, functionality wise?

  5. #5
    1000+ Posts Greg C's Avatar
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    Basically the ride. The Hydractive cars have a 3rd sphere on each axle switched in and out by the computer that senses accelerator position and rate of change, ditto steering, and suspension movement. Basically it figures out when the car is being driven with gusto or on a winding road and switches the 3rd sphere out of circuit called 'Sport Mode'. There is a switch on the centre console labeled 'Sport' which increases the systems sensitivity so makes it more likely to drop into sport mode.

    The SX has the normal 2 spheres per axle just like all the other hydropneumatic Cits. They too are very serene on the road, no matter what.

    If you just take the two variants for a drive, the VSX rides much better as in most instances it is in comfort mode. A VSX/Exclusive Xantia is right up the with DS/CX for superlative ride comfort although the Xantia is more firmly damped than either of those. Very nice though. Comparisons between machines should be on cars that have their spheres up at the correct pressure. A Xantia that rides firmly could mean the spheres need regassing, an easy job that can be done at club tech days, and should be done every 2 years at least. Part of the joy of owning a real Citroen.

    The Xantia was the last Citroen model that had the central hydraulic system that looks after brakes, suspension, steering. They steer and handle very well, have a self steering rear subframe that comes into play in extremes, ABS, Air Bag(s) and climate control, so they are a thoroughly modern machine.
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  6. #6
    Sans Pond. STALLED's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg C View Post

    The Xantia was the last Citroen model that had the central hydraulic system that looks after brakes, suspension, steering. They steer and handle very well, have a self steering rear subframe that comes into play in extremes, ABS, Air Bag(s) and climate control, so they are a thoroughly modern machine.
    Modern - bar the EuroNCAP crash rating....

    Still, for a sub 4k proposition - they are ok. Although being a bit "plastic fantastic" - I'd worry about them due to rubbers in the hydraulics being a bit past their prime, resulting in a fairly expensive car to maintain, if you can't do the work yourself!
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  7. #7
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    Yes, there are some age-related problems with the Xantia and the youngest is now over 10. It's to be expected. Aside from usual used car issues, flat spheres, flat accumulator and hydraulic leaks are possible problems. Although there are a number of places for possible leaks, the return piping is the main problem as it's convoluted and also prone to becoming hard and brittle. There are also at least three Y-pieces that split (1 under the front, 2 at rear) and cause LHM leakages. Later cars with the anti-sink valves are prone to leakage from the valve end cap and the best fix is really to replace the valve.

    Hydractive suspension with a sticking valve at the third sphere will ride as though the spheres are dead flat. The non-Hydractive models will never have this problem, so if it feels hard then it is most likely due to the spheres.

    Realistically, the NCAP performance is about as good as many cars of it's era. However, it's true that they are well behind more recent designs like the C4. It's also worth remembering that there has been a significant change in construction methods in the past decade. In particular, the use of high strength steels in the body of recent models makes them perform far better in a crash test than earlier models. Effectively, it means that what was considered a 'strong' car in the past (e.g. old Volvo, Mercedes etc.) may not perform as well as expected in a crash with even a much smaller modern car. It's quite hard for many people to get their heads around how this has changed, but it can mean that in a very bad accident, the older, larger car becomes an additional de-facto crumple zone for a more modern vechicle.

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    Fellow Frogger! ivanc4vts's Avatar
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    There's a silver, series 2 Xantia in Granville with a hydraulic leak on ebay, which could be expensive or cheap to fix and a water leak . Once you find the fluid leak and fix it, how do you top up the fluid? Please feel free to laugh at my question

  9. #9
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    On LHM cars up until the Xantia you simply raise the car to it;s maximum height and fill the reservoir until the level is between the min.max markers. On a DS, there is a tube to look at, but others have a float in the reservoir. The top of the float needs to be between the markers in the little plastic bubble on top.

    Depends where the leak is as to what it is. Find out what area it leaks from roughly and that will give you a guide. The later cars have a few different parts and it can even be a seal on the regulator lines.

  10. #10
    Sans Pond. STALLED's Avatar
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    Water leak - check for signs that the car has been cooked!
    2005 Renault Clio 182 Cup

    2011 Renault Megane 250 Cup Trophee - Sold

    1997 Peugeot 406 2.0 Manual - On Loan

    2004 Citroen C3 1.4 80th Anniversary (RIP)

  11. #11
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    Common Xantia coolant leak points are the heater matrix and the elbow at the firewall. The matric is a big job if required and the elbow can be expensive.

  12. #12
    Too many posts! JohnW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by STALLED View Post
    Modern - bar the EuroNCAP crash rating....

    Still, for a sub 4k proposition - they are ok. Although being a bit "plastic fantastic" - I'd worry about them due to rubbers in the hydraulics being a bit past their prime, resulting in a fairly expensive car to maintain, if you can't do the work yourself!
    They must be getting to that stage regarding return lines, although ours (1995 build) hasn't leaked a drop of LHM yet. About the time the octopuses start failing, Citroen dealers will start finding NLA in their computer system! Hence my new ones in a dark place.

    I'm not at all sure what I'd want to buy to replace our Xantia. Solid, comfortable, reliable, although not exactly five star EuroNCAP. Actually, improving safety at the time of the big one is the only reason I can think of for replacing the Xantia. Whatever they cost to maintain (precious little in my experience) it will be less than depreciation on a new one. Right now I'd only swap it for a good BX.

    Our only expensive job in ten years has been, wait for it, heater matrix. I wasn't insane enough to tackle that one!
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  13. #13
    Fellow Frogger! ivanc4vts's Avatar
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    It looks like a very nice clean car it's a Series 2 V6 Exclusive looking at the photos more closely. What sort of auto box does this have? Can you drive it home with a leak?!

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    Fellow Frogger! ivanc4vts's Avatar
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  15. #15
    1000+ Posts Greg C's Avatar
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    The V6 has the ZF 4HP20 auto box. I think the same as used on XM's and on 2.2 litre diesel C5s. Pretty tough box I think.

    Personally, I would steer clear of the V6. Very difficult for the home mechanic, and I don't think they are quite as well balanced as the 4 cylinder. Definitely a Q ship though if that is your bag.

    Of the 8 Xantia's on Carsales this would be my pick. The most popular/loathed colour, and from a well respected dealer.

    The white S2 manual would be worth a look to if you prefer to change your own gears
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  16. #16
    Fellow Frogger! ivanc4vts's Avatar
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    I can see why that would be your pick, would have to be the safest bet. Silver one is from a well respected dealer as well I think and they're both just over 100k on the clock. But damn that green is a hideous colour. The V6 would have to be fricken fast though!!

  17. #17
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    Pop the bonnet on any ageing PSA car and see if you still feel like owning it. Everywhere you look will be degraded plastic crap ready to go "snap, crackle pop" as soon as you go near it... radiators, heater matrixes, cooling connectors.... even oil filler caps and .... damn it ... even the god damn dipstick breaks if you try to do something stupid like check the oil level ....

    I changed the oil on the C4 last week.... Plastic.... plastic that will be brittle in a few years time everywhere. Even the bloody oil filter housing you must unscrew is made of plastic..... as is the dipstick. The filter locks into the oil filter housing so incredibly bloody tightly, I was stunned when I finally extract it without smashing the frail plastic housing. I still flicked oil the entire length of the shed to achieve that though ( ). I doubt many more oil changes will be possible before it's all smashed as it's turn brittle. No doubt it'll be worth an arm and leg to replace once broken too.

    If you want something decent ..... look pre-psa era

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  18. #18
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    A V6 Xantia is a pleasant car to drive, but doesn't offer a lot more than a well-specified 16 Valve 4 cylinder. Without going into detail, many V6's are now at the point where they are simply uneconomic to fix if there is a significant fault. It is just not going to be cheap transport unless you can do the work yourself. Odds on the coolant leak is a split reservoir or one of the hoses right at the back of the engine. V6 gearboxes are better than the AL4, but certainly not bulletproof. You just have to make sure you don't buy too cheaply and get the PO's problems - there are plenty of cheapies out there with problems. Spend a bit more and get something that's got a proper service history and the problem areas (i.e. strut tops) already addressed. A Xsara may be a better choice for you at present.

  19. #19
    Fellow Frogger! frog's Avatar
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    *Cough*


  20. #20
    Fellow Frogger! ivanc4vts's Avatar
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    Reason for wanting to get into a Xantia it seems like the most cost effective way to get into comfortable, economical, stylish Citroen with the proper "upsy-downsy" suspension. That's really what I'm wanting to try out. Secondly i'm looking for a 4 door car. I'm sure I'll be needing to put the baby in the back of my car sooner or later.
    Manual or auto i'm still kind of uhmming and aahhing about, i do the majority of driving in to and from work. C5 might be worth a look too since my better half rather liked the feel/look of them in the dealership.

  21. #21
    1000+ Posts Greg C's Avatar
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    If you are going to go for the C5, make sure it is a diesel, the best of the C5s. If you can afford it an early series 2 car is the best bet, with the Aisin Warner 6 speed box, and by that stage they all had Hydractive suspension

    Expect to pay about $20k depending on distance traveled
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