After some time with a ZX 1.9D, then a Xsara 1.4 Coupe, I have decided to
try the "real" Citroen and I traded-in the Xsara (I kept the ZX) for the
New C5 1.6HDi. Since I have never had a proper Citroen before, what are
the precautions to have in mind regarding the suspension? Or anything else
regarding the car? I know that the old C5 had some problems generally, but
any experience with the new one? It will be delivered next week so I'm
looking forward to it!
Mikros ( email@example.com) gurgled happily, sounding much like they were
Nothing much, really.
I'm not quite sure what the change interval is on the fluid - it's a few
years on the old LHM, and the new stuff won't be less than that. Same with
You don't have to worry about the suspension rising before driving off -
with the C5, the electric pump is switched on and pressurised as soon as
you unlock the car. Just drive it, and enjoy it!
You might want to consider joining the C5 email list at Yahoogroups -
Do you mean that when the car is switched off, it will still lower down as
it used to be in DS and CX? Lovely! Just because Im an amateur on this
systems... Does it have a variable height adjustment, or is 3-4 levels?
The ancient HP suspension featured four ground clearance levels: Down,
normal ride, high ride, up. It is not recommended to drive in down and
up position, because the suspension does not work at all in these
positions. Up position can be useful for changing tires and for service
purposes. Down position can be useful for storing away the car with
limited headroom, but it is only necessary for service purposes. Normal
ride is for everyday use, high ride gives you an additional ground
clearance of five inches or so. But the suspension gets very stiff, so
it is not recommended to drive faster than 10 mph at high ride.
In ancient times, a HP car would sink to the ground within a minute and
would need some 30 seconds to "stand uo again". In the 90's Citroen
introduced AntiSink which would prevent that (the C5 has AntiSink and
does not sink so fast). In return Citroen decreased the size of the HP
pressure pump. Because the system holds pressure better, you can go
with a smaller pump. Before the introduction of the C5, this pump was
driven by the engine, which required starting the engine in order to
reach the correct system pressure. The C5 has an electric HP pump which
is activated when you open the door. So the system pressure should be
okay as soon as you start the engine - not spectacular, but very
In the 90's Citroen also introduced Hydractive. This system stiffens
the suspension automatically, when road safety requires it (sharp
driving meneuvers etc). Your C5 is equipped with Hydractive, but you
may not note the appearance of the system during everyday ride. I feel
the suspension stiffen regularily when I travel at high speeds. When I
go through a wide Autobahn curve with 100 mph or more, the car begins
to become slightly "bumpy".
The most known failure sources to a HP suspension are:
Worn out suspension spheres. They hold pressure at least for five years
or 50.000 miles. If they lose pressure, the suspension gets more and
more bumpy. Exchange is fairly easy and reasonably priced.
Worn out or de-adjusted height levellers. Have a mechanic check them.
Dirty and polluted HP fluid. Always use the right fluid, change it
according to the service schedule and do not forget to clean the HP oil
filter every now and then.
HP fluid leakage. This is quite dangerous, because the HP system feeds
not only the suspension but also the brakes and the steering. HP fluid
If you have your car checked once a year by a competent Citroen service
station, this should not happen to you. If you think about moving your
car from normal ride to high ride every now and then, this maintains
the moving ability of all parts. That basically ist all-
please replace spam-muelleimer with fk-newsgroups for e-mail contact
Frank Kemper ( firstname.lastname@example.org) gurgled happily, sounding much like
they were saying :
Only if the hydraulics are *very* shagged out. My CXs would take a couple
of days to sink, as should any decent D.
The dog slow climb times are also due to the cheap plastic pumps that
Citroen introduced in the 90s - strangely, around the time that the anti-
sink spheres came in...
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