Citroen Xsara Picasso owners are the worst drivers in the world

This is one of those theories I can’t prove, but which I know in my gut is right: Citroen Picasso owners are the worst drivers in the world. I’m not being funny, either: when I see one I start driving like one of those Institute of Advanced Motorists chaps who drives on the basis that other road users are actively trying to kill you. If they’re driving a Picasso, they are.

To take just one (of very many) examples, I was behind one yesterday as we turned on to a motorway slip road. “Did I ever tell you my theory that Picasso drivers are the worst drivers in the world?” I asked Mrs Bigmouth. As she was about to reply, the Citroen misjudged the corner, mounted the kerb, came back on to the road and wobbled alarmingly. We kept well back as it weaved its way down the slip road and joined the motorway, and as soon as it was safe I dropped a gear and pulled into the next lane. At which point the Picasso tried to drive into the side of my car. The driver didn’t look, didn’t indicate, and appeared to be playing with the centre console of her car. She was driving at 70-plus miles per hour and seemed completely unaware of anything outside the car.

If I didn’t have a long track record of Xsara drivers trying to kill me, I wouldn’t have been anticipating kamikaze moves and I probably wouldn’t be here.

I think what makes Picasso drivers so dangerous is that other bad drivers are predictable. The middle manager in the C-class Merc will always drive like a wanker; the sales rep in the 3-series will always drive as if he’s in a war; the 4×4 with the blacked-out windows (a) can’t see you (b) is wrestling with suspension that turns even the smoothest road into a bouncy castle and (c) is racing to a drug deal / to pick the kids up from private school; the ned in the Max Power Corsa will always attempt dangerous overtaking, undertaking and general wombling. But Picasso drivers are just mental, alternating between raw aggression, utter terror, attempted suicide and formula one racing every few seconds.

I know a few Xsara owners, and outside their cars they’re lovely. Nice. Normal, even. But put them behind the wheel and they become nuts. There’s got to be a reason for it, but I’m buggered if I know what it is.

[photopress:76_crash.jpg,full,pp_image]
Image: A Citroen Picasso being driven normally

45 thoughts on “Citroen Xsara Picasso owners are the worst drivers in the world

  1. callum says:

    My mum drives a Citroen Xsara, not a picaso, but I agree with what you say, but change the reference to include all Citroen’s, I almost always get cut-up but Citroen taxis on the M8. Line them all up on a disused airfield and blow them up.

  2. Neil says:

    I borrowed a family-owned Xsara for a fortnight to drive back and forth between Newcastle and Glasgow and it was fantastic! People gave me loads of room to overtake / pull-out / just sit doing nothing parked on the side of the kerb as they drove by, steering wheel gripped, white-knuckled in fear….
    I can’t recommend them highly enough. The insurance premiums are a bit high though…..

  3. Strange says:

    you guys do get me if you are not expecting every person whos driving on the road in this day and age are trying to kill you then you are deluded. most drivers in my experience are just not looking out of there windows. we are about to buy a picasso so this site is a worth while find for me so i hope to be the one driver who isn`t a complete tosser, so at least theres one. Cracking car dirt cheap top class it is french and they hate us more then we hate them so i was expecting a complete pile of shit but it surprised even me. have fun and bear in mind that every driver especially people who wear flat caps and the over fifties are tring to kill you then enjoy the experience and hope you get home alive.

  4. Gary says:

    hope to be the one driver who isn`t a complete tosser, so at least theres one.

    That’s what everyone thinks, Strange. But the car will chaaaaaaange you ;)

  5. Andrew says:

    I think the picasso is a great car.

    The worst drivers on the raod are the ones behinfd the wheel of the ford focus!

  6. Gary says:

    Aye, there’s nothing wrong with the car ;-)

    I take your Ford Focus and raise you MG-branded Rovers. Lunatics, the lot of ’em.

  7. keith says:

    does anyone know where the battery is on a picasso?
    I am married to a woman owner and considering disconnecting it.

    oh yes. Volvos. And cyclists.

  8. Rob says:

    I own a picasso and while i cant say im tthe best driver in the world, i can definatly say im not the worst.
    there are worse drivers about and these drivers tend to drive BMW’s (any one) Volvo drivers (estates mostly), BUT if you see a Vauxhall movano about you can almost guarantee that the driver has a death wish comparible to an mossie on a mission.
    Oh yeah the battery is under the passengers seat, ill leave you to figure out how to get at it (not too difficult)

  9. Jim Steele says:

    What rubbish! Yes there will be some bad Picasso drivers – its inevitable just as there are bad drivers of any vehicle from horse drawn to tanks. The problem is with the person and I find too many agressive drivers on the road these days most trying their best to drive right up into my boot end. The other day I looked in the mirror to see what seemed to be a gremlin up my back end with an angry bad tempered contorted face as he had swung in off the motorway and could not pass me until the road became two lanes – I was doing 50 on this slip road and he came off at 70+ braking hard behind me whilst swearing and cursing like a madman – Road rage at its worse eh!

  10. Squander Two says:

    > Yes there will be some bad Picasso drivers – its inevitable just as there are bad drivers of any vehicle from horse drawn to tanks.

    But people don’t buy cars randomly, because each car has a carefully designed marketing campaign designed to appeal to certain personality types. Given that, we can expect the distribution of driver types across car types to be uneven.

    For instance, Mazda’s marketing has been aimed squarely at boy racers for the last few years. “Drive our cars fast and swerve a lot and beautiful young women will want to fuck you” is the message, and bloody unsubtle it is too. Any fifty-year-old women who religiously obey the speed limit buying Mazdas lately? I doubt it.

  11. Gary says:

    Hi Jim.

    > Yes there will be some bad Picasso drivers – its inevitable just as there are bad drivers of any vehicle from horse drawn to tanks.

    Maybe all the good ones are in other countries ;-)

    > The problem is with the person and I find too many agressive drivers on the road these days

    Oh, indeed. And it appears to be getting worse.

  12. antonello says:

    Well I know a French, his name is Sebastian that drives a citroen very well , i don’ t remember the surname …Ah it? s Loeb .:))

  13. stan says:

    Naaa Picasso are nowhere near the worst drivers. BMW and sports cars are the worst, as they don’t have indicators or speedometers, and they can park just anywhere, anyhow.
    They also have such wonderful sign language too.

  14. Ian says:

    I think the problem is with people carriers in general – Xsara Picasso’s just happen to be the most common people carrier. I live down the road from 2 school (1 primary and one secondary) and the parents who drop their kids off all drive the same way – their little darling must be dropped off right outside the gate so they don’t have to cross any dangerous roads or get wet in the rain, but everyone else’s ‘orrible thugs can get reversed over and they better not get their blood on my paintwork.

    My kids walk to school.

    I walk past both schools to get to the independent school I teach in, it’s the same there with Mercedes, BMW and Land Rover 4x4s. Bit worse. Much, much worse.

    It is true that the car changes the way you drive. I’ve always owned Fiats until I recently traded my Punto (Italian cars make you chuck ’em round corners in 2nd gear and rev the engine like mental) for a Xsara Picasso (French car, makes you drive everywhere knowing that you might not own the road but if Napoleon had his way…). I once had a Mercedes C-class for a few days, I drove very, very slowly cos it was so comfortable I didn’t want to arrive and I didn’t even notice the huge queue of angry people behind me until I got out.

    What I don’t get is all the people who have one tiny baby and immediately feel they must trade their car in for a 7 seater?

  15. Gary says:

    I do wonder if my theory still stands now there’s a new, cooler Picasso. I suspect it does.

    > I think the problem is with people carriers in general – Xsara Picasso’s just happen to be the most common people carrier.

    Yes, you’re absolutely right. I believe the figure is one in four of all people carriers sold in the UK is a citroen, and the Picasso is the best-selling one of the lot.

    > their little darling must be dropped off right outside the gate so they don’t have to cross any dangerous roads or get wet in the rain, but everyone else’s ‘orrible thugs can get reversed over and they better not get their blood on my paintwork.

    Haha. Yes.

    > What I don’t get is all the people who have one tiny baby and immediately feel they must trade their car in for a 7 seater?

    It’s got to be sleep deprivation, which lasts for a lot longer than non-parents might think. My wee one’s just turned two, so naturally I’d really like a Land Rover Discovery now.

  16. Squander Two says:

    > What I don’t get is all the people who have one tiny baby and immediately feel they must trade their car in for a 7 seater?

    In a crash, bigger cars are generally safer than small ones.

  17. Heather says:

    Do you read the list that’s published every December by the General Register Office for Scotland of all the baby names registered in that year? It’s always fun to scan for the really tacky baby names. There was an Xsara-Louise last year. Wonder where she was conceived. Might explain some bad driving.

    BTW, I apologise in advance if Xsara-Louise someday goes to school with a girl called Shl…

  18. Gary says:

    That’s often a misconception, though. A second-hand Fiesta or Focus is a safer car than a Picasso or Land Rover Discovery of the same age.

  19. Squander Two says:

    Yeah, I know. But that’s general safety across the board. What I meant was that in a crash between a huge car and a small car, the huge one’s generally safer. Which I suspect is psychologically more important to many people than other safety factors. After all, no-one thinks they’re going to drive into a wall or a ditch, do they? No, the problem’s always going to be some other bloody idiot who can’t drive hitting you.

  20. Xsara drivers are cnuts says:

    Citroen Xsaras are unspeakably hideous boxes for transporting ugly stupid people and their revolting brats. They should all be destroyed, and their owners shot.

  21. hunnymonster says:

    >>Anonymous on May 18th, 2012

    >>WHAT A TWAT YOU ARE!

    I find your views fascinating and your argument extremely coherently argued and wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

  22. wayne says:

    i traded in my old cramped car for a x reg xsara picasso.
    im 6.8 tall and ive driven several cars before.
    but this picasso looked decent and being tall had loads of room inside for someone my size.
    im not fat big built il grant you that from years of training but anyway it felt comfertable for 2 days then i fond the chair uncomfertable as i started getting slight pains in my left knee from rubbing along the center consile.
    if the seat lifted at the front so it lifted your legs into a better position then id stop pushing myself back into the seat all the time.
    i love the set up inside this car and its perfect for me with my disabled son too.
    doors sound tinny when shutting,but most of all is the head room for me personally.
    im 6,8 so to get a car with a really high roof is fantastic news.
    i owned a volvo v40 and my head was pushed to the side cousing my neck to lock up and not have full 100% vision on the roads to be honest.
    the picasso has really awkward and wide posts on the front to side windows making it easy to not look accuratly when at a junction.
    i know i nearly made a mistake and ive only had the car a week so far.
    my dad tryed it out too and e hated the posts being so large too,causing him to comment on it for being a blind spot on the car.
    i will admit i like the car and didnt pay alot for it really £400 plus my old car.
    i drive decently by the way im 47 clean licence but ive already had a few ideots try pushing me out the way when doing the speed limit in a built up area.
    one occasion today a guy undercut me thinking he could get past me when i was already behind traffic myself and he couldnt get between me and other cars so i swung to the left to stop him in his tracks and save us all from being in a serious crash.
    so ok citoen has a blind spot u just need to adjust to it and do the right things when looking.
    ive been in a few crashes in my years each some was down to human error and each one was coused by someone else.
    myself i reversed into a tree rolling off my drive lol.
    but that wasnt in this car also the rear view mirror is high up and you cant see down the road fully only see as far as a cars number plates behind you and wont adjust to allow further view in the distance.
    still i got room to breath in this but seats crap for me personaly due to my height.
    but perfect to transport friends n family around at the moment.

  23. Jimmy Blue says:

    My goodness there are a lot of prejudiced morons contributing to this site. The sweeping generalisation about the Picasso can equally be applied to any other model of car. For example, I find Audi drivers the worst. They have to hog the outside lane and will aggressively force you out of the way even if you are doing 90
    The problem with the Picasso is, in my opinion, caused by people’s attitudes towards them. People tend to think that they are slow sluggish vehicles driven by mummies and daddies but they are capable of good acceleration and a top speed in excess of 90 which makes them no different from any other car. I.E. they can drive illegally just the same as anyone else
    So, since people think they are sluggish, they don’t want to let them out to change lane because they think they’ll be stuck behind them. This discourteous behaviour engenders a defensive stance by the Picasso drivers which goes along the lines of ‘everybody else is a selfish wanker’
    What is much more of an issue is the middle lane moron. Generally women and Asian men, but increasingly builders too. Driving along with the attitude of ‘that left lane is for slow vehicles and I’m not slow so I’m not going to use it’. Idiots. They are ruining the roads for the rest of us by reducing them to 2 lanes, or in the case of the M1 near Luton, reducing them to 2 lanes by hogging lanes 3 and 4

  24. mupwangle says:

    So someone is a predujiced moron if they make sweeping generalisations about a type of car, but not by making sweeping generalisations about race, gender or profession? Interesting distinction.

    I believe that the reason for the increase in people hogging the middle lane, in heavier traffic, is usually not because they are stupid or inconsiderate, per se, just that they are equally stupid and inconsiderate as quite a few other people who, as soon as you move into the left hand lane, they refuse to let you out of it. This is not car specific.

    The most inconsiderate bit of driving I saw this week was by a Picasso (coincidentally, I’m sure!) who was approaching a slip road exit at about 50mph on an otherwise clear motorway. 5 or 6 cars were joining the motorway and all had to stop and give way since he refused to move into the middle lane. The highway code doesn’t say you have to move, but if you don’t on an empty road then you’re a dickhead.

    Also, having in recent years been regular driver of Renault, Skoda, Audi, Peugeot, Ford and Smart cars, I’ve only found that people’s attitudes to me only changed when leaving junctions in traffic where the Skoda Octavia was usually let out by taxi drivers (this was not the case with other Skodas) and the opposite with all drivers (other than Audi TT drivers) when driving an Audi TT. (Again, not when driving other Audis). Saying that anyone would drive in a certain inconsiderate way because of how they think that they are perceived by other drivers is probably the dumbest thing I’ve heard this week – and I’ve spent a lot of time on trains with drunks this week.

  25. Jimmy Blue says:

    I am perplexed by your comment about race, gender or profession. I made no such distinction – you seem to have inferred it. Do you mean that I did not comment on other posts about such things? I did not see any such posts because I became disenchanted when I saw people say puerile things like “Citroen Xsaras are unspeakably hideous boxes for transporting ugly stupid people and their revolting brats. They should all be destroyed, and their owners shot” and skipped to the end to make my own comment
    I’m surprised you think the theory about people’s behaviour is ‘the dummest thing…’ but you have nothing to say to the nazi who made the comment above – “…and their owner’s shot”. Interesting distinction

  26. mupwangle says:

    >>I made no such distinction – you seem to have inferred it.

    If by “inferred” you mean “read your words”, then yes, I have. To quote:

    “What is much more of an issue is the middle lane moron. Generally women and Asian men, but increasingly builders too.”

    Am I reading that incorrectly? Are you suggesting that you didn’t mean women, Asian men or builders? Are these some sort of codewords?

    >>I’m surprised you think the theory about people’s behaviour is ‘the dummest thing…’

    Irrespective of my feelings about any other comments on this thread, I did say that it was the dumbest thing I’ve heard *this week*. The comment you are referring to was made over two years ago and can hardly qualify as this week and may well have been made by Jeremy Clarkson, someone else who often incites people to prove Godwin’s Law in the internet. (For future reference, you shouldn’t really refer to someone as being a Nazi and being puerile in the same post – if the Nazis were famous for anything, it wasn’t their childishness. Or, for that matter, their hatred of french people carriers.)

  27. Jimmy Blue says:

    Hmm yes I see what you mean. That comment could be construed as a sweeping generalisation, but it is simply my experience based upon years of observation…which leads nicely on to you saying that your original comment about Picasso drivers is also based upon your experience. I can’t argue with that

    However, the difference is that I said ‘Generally’, which is of course a generalisation, whereas you condemned every single Picasso driver by stating your opinion as if it was fact

    Have you analysed all the drivers in Brazil or any other country in the world to see if drivers there are worse or better than Picasso drivers?

  28. mupwangle says:

    >>whereas you condemned every single Picasso driver by stating your opinion as if it was fact

    Reading really isn’t your strong suit, is it? Firstly, at no point have I expressed an opinion on Picasso drivers. The writer of the blog did (it’s easy to tell us apart – he’s called Gary and helpfully even has a little picture of himself when he comments that matches the title page of the blog), but I’m just someone who took exception to you calling everyone who has commented on this thread a prejudiced moron.

    Secondly, for something to be a sweeping generalisation, you don’t actually have to use the word “generally”. If you notice the very first sentence of this blog entry – “This is one of those theories I can’t prove, but which I know in my gut is right:”, i.e., this is something which I believe to be true but do not have any actual evidence, other than in my own experience. This is also known as an opinion. Had Gary actually done the sort of research that you suggest then he would have stated at the beginning of the article something like “Exhaustive research has proven that Xsara Picasso drivers are the worst in the world.” That would be stating it as if it were fact.

    In any event, I’m sure that everyone else here is as bored with this conversation as I am.

  29. Jimmy Blue says:

    Yes you’re right. I have done spectacularly badly here. I’ve skim-read then passed judgement – but I’ve learned a valuable lesson – Read things properly and don’t be such a dick. I can only apologise and leave you alone

    Cheers

  30. Anonymous says:

    Πες την αληθεια??΅Εισαι παντα τοσο βλακας ή μετα τις 11 αποκτας αυτη την απεριοριστη και υπερανθρωπη βλακεια????Δηλαδη οσοι οδηγουν citroen ειναι αργοι και μανουλες ενω οσοι οδηγουν bmw ή ακομα την a class που απετυχε στο τεστ ταρανδου ειναι αντρες και ραλλιστες???oh my my….argumentum ad hominem…..

  31. Gary says:

    Hello. I’m afraid that posting in other languages means a meaning-mangling trip to Google Translate. It’s taken your greek text and translated it to:

    “Tell the truth;; Are you always so stupid or after 11 endowed with this unlimited and superhuman stupidity;;;; LEADING citroen namely those who are slow and Mommy while those LEADING bmw or even to a class who failed the test is Andrew and REINDEER rallistes;;;”

    Which, ironically, is all Greek to me.

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