What is Citroen SimplyDrive?

Pay for your finance, insurance, servicing and breakdown cover in one single instalment: all the details on Citroen SimplyDrive

BuyaCar team
Dec 13, 2019
Citroen C4 Cactus moving

Are you looking for the best way to get a new car on the cheap? You may have been intrigued by the idea of so called 'just add fuel' deals. These are ways of stretching out the overall cost of purchasing and running a car so you don't need to save up a shed load of cash.

These kinds of deals have appeared across the market in a number of forms, one of those is Citroen SimplyDrive, which allows you to pay for a brand new car, with insurance, tax, servicing, and roadside assistance all taken care of within a single monthly payment. Then all you have to do is just add fuel - hence the name.

Generally speaking, just add fuel options are only available with brand new cars, and Citroen SimplyDrive is the same - but it is restricted to certain models. Cars currently offered are the Citroen C1 city car, the family-sized Citroen C3, the rugged Citroen C3 Aircross crossover, and the Citroen C4 Cactus.

Initiatives like this can open the door for younger people to get hold of their first wheels, where large amounts of cash are so difficult to come by, buying a car is virtually impossible for the majority, so finance deals such as Citroen SimplyDrive can make a real difference.

Teenage drivers will need to have a black box fitted to their car, which will monitor the safety of their driving. Older drivers may be required to have one too if they don't have two years of no-claims bonus.

 

The finance itself is based on Personal Contract Purchase (PCP) and typically runs for three years. At the end of your contract, you can hand the car back with nothing more to pay, or pay a lump sum to own the vehicle. Depending on its value, you may also be able to trade the car in with any manufacturer for a different model.

Our in-depth guide to PCP finance will give you all the details.

Because SimplyDrive is restricted to brand new cars, it's a relatively expensive arrangement; you'll almost certainly spend less by choosing a used car. You may be able to create a type of used car fuel and go deal, by extending your finance to cover your first year's insurance and tax.

Cars available with Citroen SimplyDrive

How Citroen SimplyDrive works

Pros

✔ Easy to budget with single monthly payment
✔ Fixed insurance costs (unless circumstances change)
✔ Can offer good value for young drivers
✔ Large choice of Citroens

Cons

 Limited to Citroen models
Requires no-claims history or black box to monitor driving
 Can't shop for cheaper insurance or breakdown cover
 Save driving doesn't cut insurance costs

Citroen SimplyDrive for young drivers

If you’re aged between 18 and 20 and you've had your driving licence for less than two years, then you’ll need to have a black box fitted to your SimplyDrive car. Using telematics technology, it will monitor how you’re driving, and keep a record of your speed among other things, including the roads that you’re travelling on and how smoothly you brake and accelerate. Your performance is ranked out of 100. Your score has to remain above a threshold set by Citroen. If it falls below, then you’ll be sent a formal warning. Receive four of those in a year, and your insurance policy will be cancelled.

This will be the same for any driver with less than two years of no claims. The minimum age for the scheme is 18. Drivers under 21 are limited to certain models and smaller engines if they want to use SimplyDrive.

How much does Citroen SimplyDrive cost?

It all depends on the car that you’re looking at and your circumstances - particularly your age, which will affect your insurance payments.

For example, an 18-year-old living in Cheshire can take out a SimplyDrive agreement on a small Citroen C1 (below), which has relatively cheap monthly finance payments. However, the insurance part of the agreement costs £136 per month, taking the total monthly payment to £325.

For a 23-year-old with two years’ no claims discount, the insurance element drops to £63 a month, bringing monthly payments down to £252.

The exact quote will depend on your postcode, the length of the agreement, mileage limit and deposit that you have.

Is Citroen SimplyDrive good value?

As long as you want a Citroen, and the insurance part of the deal is cheaper than you would be able to obtain elsewhere, then SimplyDrive can be good value.

The price tends to increase sharply if you choose a car with anything but the smallest engine. That's because you face a double whammy of higher insurance costs, plus the extra finance payments for a more expensive model - just as you would if you bought these items separately.

Cars purchsed through SimplyDrive won’t necessarily be available with the very best Citroen discounts, so it’s worth comparing against the cost of financing a car and paying for the insurance separately, along with all of the other elements.

If you’re set on a single monthly payment that includes everything except fuel, then you can also look at other just add fuel deals, operated by Citroen’s sister companies DS and Peugeot.

Requirements for Citroen SimplyDrive

As with other types of car finance, you will have to pass a credit check. There’s also a list of requirements that are designed to attract safe drivers.

  • Drivers aged between 18 and 24 cannot have had any driving convictions in the past five years, or any fault or theft claim in the previous three.
  • Young drivers must also have a black box fitted, as does anyone without a two year no claims discount.
  • Drivers aged 25 and over cannot have had more than one minor conviction (and no serious driving convictions) in the previous five years and must have held their driving licence for at least two years.
  • There is also an upper age limit: you have to be under 75 to qualify.

Can I end a SimplyDrive agreement early?

Yes. If you decide that you would prefer to pay for insurance, breakdown cover or servicing separately, then you can remove one or more of these elements during the agreement without penalty. These are pay-as-you-go services so if you stop making the payments, you’ll need to make your own arrangements, but you won’t owe anything.

However, if you want to hand the car back or buy it before the end of the agreed term, then you’ll need to ask Citroen for a settlement figure. This will be the total amount that you’ll need to pay in order to end the agreement. You’ll save on some interest payments but will usually have to pay an additional fee. Towards the end of the agreement, the settlement fee may not apply.

Cars available with Citroen SimplyDrive

All of the cars offered as part of a SimplyDrive deal are listed below. You can configure a new Citroen that’s on the list, and then request to buy it under this arrangement.

The example quotes are for an 18 and a 30-year-old, both living in Cheshire, on a three-year agreement with a £1,000 deposit and 8,000 annual mileage limit

Citroen C1 deals on SimplyDrive

Typical quote Citroen C1 Feel 1.0 VTi 3dr
Age 18 £325 per month Age 30 £264

Available if you're 18 or over, Citroen’s little city car is designed to appeal to young drivers, with its funky styling and models that are classified in low insurance groups. There’s the option of a full-length fabric sunroof too.

Although you’re likely to put up with the cramped rear seats if your only other option is the bus, the C1 isn’t the best choice for carrying lots of passengers because of its small dimensions and rear windows that pop out, rather than wind down.

Citroen C1 buyers' guide

Citroen C3 deals on SimplyDrive

Typical quote Citroen C3 Flair 1.2 PureTech 82hp
Age 18 £389 Age 30 £328

Also available to drivers aged 18 or over, Citroen’s C3 offers more space than the C1, so you’ll be able to fit five teenagers in, as long as everyone in the back squeezes up.

Pick a top-of-the-range Flair model and it will come with a built-in dashboard camera to complement the black box that young drivers will need to have fitted, which will give you a full range of evidence if you are involved in an accident.

Citroen C3 buyers' guide

Citroen C4 Cactus deals on SimplyDrive

Typical quote Citroen C4 Cactus Feel 1.2 PureTech 110hp
Age 18 £456 Age 30 £388

For teenagers who dream of a soft, comfortable car that’s extremely practical, the C4 Cactus is ideal, although few will be able to afford the price; it's a better option for families who are looking for a spacious new car for a single monthly fee.

Citroen C4 Cactus buyers' guide

Citroen C3 Aircross deals on SimplyDrive

Typical quote Citroen C3 Aircross Flair 1.2 PureTech 82hp
Age 18 £431 Age 30 £370

It's not just the looks of the Citroen C3 Aircross that are striking. It's spacious and has an enormous boot for a car of its size - a small crossover, which combines the low running costs and comfort of a hatchback with the extra height of an off-roader.

It's comfortable and good value, whether you're looking at a SimplyDrive deal or a nearly new model.

Citroen C3 Aircross buyers' guide

 

Read more about:

Latest jargon busters

  1. Electric car glossary: Electric Vehicle (EV) jargon busted

  2. What is horsepower?

  3. What is voice control?

What our customers say