The Citroen Ami isn't so bad
I may have said very unfriendly things about it, but my opinion has mysteriously changed.
When the Ami was revealed several months ago I hated Citroen for doing that to us, and I hoped I'd never come even near on of these things.
However, Citroën presented the C5X a few weeks ago, and just the other day the Ami suddenly started to make sense to me. With the C5X Citroën seems to go back to its path of the second half of the 20th century. At that time they used to have big, very unusual and unique cruising machines like the DS and the CX, the C5X obviously follows in that line. And that it features in this article gives us another opportunity to look at it!
The great Citroen C5X (which is clearly better than the C5).
On the other side you could however also get Citroens that were as basic as a car can get, I'm talking about the Méhari and the 2CV. Citroën already tried to bring back the Méhari years ago in form of the quite horrible E-Méhari, but they frankly messed it up completely. It's neither a basic car nor is it one that was ever meant for the masses.
The all around awful Citroën E-Méhari which is only popular among horses and leprachauns.
This is where the new Ami comes into the light. To see if it follows the rules of a cheap and small Citroen we just have to answer ourselves five questions:
Is it small?
Yes, with a length of 2.41 meters and a weight of just 471 kilograms (= ca. one bag of potatoes) it is.
Is it cheap?
In most countries the Ami isn't on sale yet, but in France it costs 6.900€ and it shouldn't be much more expensive in other coutries. So yes, it also is cheap.
Is it basic?
It couldn't really be more basic if it tried. The design people at Citroen have even dispensed with good looks, just like on the old Méhari and 2CV.
Is it practical?
It hasn't got a van sized trunk for obvious reasons. But its interior is surprisingly spacious for a car of such size and of course it will be easy to park, so that's a yes as well.
Is it meant for the masses?
Definitely, Citroen has even presented car sharing systems and for such it will also come to the USA, which is a step Citroëns haven't dared for decades.
A couple of rocks fell on a road. Oh wait no, it's two Citroen Amis.
As we've established the Ami is a proper small Citroen then, and while the C5X was a clearer sign for Citroën going back to its former glory, the Ami definitely rounds off this action and makes owning a unique Citroen possible for everyone again.
The only thing I have a problem with, which was also the main reason for me to strongly critizice the Ami until very recently, is its name.
If Ami was a new name I'd be absolutely fine with it, since the names Méhari and 2CV clearly don't follow the same name scheme. But Ami was the name of a couple of looks-focused midclass cars from the 1960s (Ami 6) and 1970s (Ami 8).
The Ami 6 was not as basic as it could have been.
But of course we once again have to remember Vincent Genius Cobée, the CEO of Citroën. By presenting the C5X as a sedan, he confused most people, which is a very Citroënish thing to do. And honestly just during the writing of the paragraph above I realized how Monsieur Cobée already confused everyone by naming the Ami seemingly wrong.
All Vincents are geniuses (and there is no exception Dickolas, think of something new).
Now I don't have a problem with the Ami's name anymore, so apart from the fact it's pretty much only useable inside cities I no longer see any issues with the car. So I guess I should apologize to the Ami now for being so unkind to it, sorry and everything, I didn't mean it.