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Club XM Forum > XM General Issues
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Later V6 24v are CAM BELT driven, I beleve, a singular belt drives all four cams!! Not too keen on that.

Earlyer V6 12v are chain drives, as is the 24v S1. So less maintenace in that area..

DerekW, what makes you think the 24v doesn't accelerate too well?? They are unbeleveably quick for the size and age of car..!?

Early V6's are common - there seems to be quite a few about, although most are all in ownership.. I'd say that the later V6's are scarce as it didn't come to the XM till quite late... Was it N, or P reg before it got it???

I'm a fan of autos too, and not had a real vice either.. I only changed my auto box as it was snatching between 3rd and 4th, and was getting worse slowly..??


You'r all trying to talk me into having an auto arn't you - and I think you might be succeeding......


not sure if its towards you, or Sam..

I'm not anti an Auto, at all. Are the seats transferable between estates and saloons? If I buy a leather hatch, then later, could I switch them over into an estate, if I bought one, with reasonable ease? I can't believe I didn't bid on the ebay estate with leather, but that's life. Economy is absolutely my priority, and performance isn't. I do a lot of motorway miles, the office being a 260 mile round trip away, and my clients being all over the country, and the appeal of a car which will let me do that in supreme comfort, at almost 50 mpg, and into which I can then easily pack 5 people and their camping gear for 2 weeks, or several bikes (which I buy and sell), or someone's sofa - wonderful. All of this for less than £1000? Even better!
Hi Guys

One point I would make regarding the XM auto is that depending whether you have experience of other auto boxes, you may be surprised to find that the change points on the XM auto seem very fixed (can't speak for the V6, never had one). I've had many GM autos, some Borg Warner and some Aisin Warner and on all of those a light throttle foot will produce early upward changes, while an overrun situation will give no perceptible engine braking (unless a low ratio is deliberately chosen) and a down change will only occur late in the slowing down scenario. By contrast, all the auto XMs I've had show the same characteristics -- i.e top gear --- change up at (for example) 42 mph -- change down -- 42 mph. Result -- in urban traffic you find yourself looking for that extra bit of speed to lose some of the excess revs; on a trailing throttle, where you may be quite happy to coast ordinarily, you can't, because the box religiously drops a cog. Additionally, the changes seem quite marked, whereas other manufacturers' boxes seem to slur between gears, pretty much without you noticing. I've been lucky and never had any reliability issues with the XM autos I've had, but I have consistently found myself irritated waiting for them to change up for the sake of another one or two miles an hour when plainly the engine would pull the load in a higher ratio.
Peter --- as something of an auto sceptic, I really would suggest you try before you maybe buy, if you can, because I suspect the characteristics I have found won't much agree with you.

Hi - just to add my tuppensworth to this interesting and varied thread with the current
emphasis on auto's!!

I've run both manual and auto Citroens for years from the Cx's through to Xantia and Xm's
and the worst of the lot for longevity and reliability are undoubtedly the Xantia/Xm auto's.

A ZF box on a 2.0i Xantia that's an almost identical design to the one in the Xm lost all it's
forward drive and I got a BRAND NEW off the pallet (from a Citroen agent closing down) one
fitted. After the graft of installing it I took the car for a drive and was crestfallen as it appeared
the car wasn't changing through the gears and seemed to like constantly accelerating hard in
a high* gear/high revs. It took a long while and a lot of convincing before I realised it was
changing gears but they were so superb/feathered and smooth I couldn't detect the changes.
I drive another similar miles/age Xantia that you certainly can feel the changes. (*1st/2nd)

Whilst this proves the changes can be smooth the change points very much need that critical
30 then 40 etc speed which onthecut correctly describes as being very irritating especially on
our Police State road system all technologied up to the gunwalls...

When auto's work OK they can be a joy to use especially in a grind commute but if you cross
country drive and enjoy rowing the car along in a spirited fashion through the gears an auto is
out of it's depth and can be hopeless when it comes to overtaking a slow vehicle etc. I don't
fancy banging a load of unnecessary high revs through the box just to get a bit of welly to

I say stick to manuals - and I am biased = you don't have to be neurotic with one compared
to an AUTO and that really stands for diesels too - petrol any day for me!! laugh.gif

Which brings me to LPG!! I think it's the way forward as Diesel and it's dodgy alternative home
brews are ultimately doomed to cost the arm and the leg the way unleaded is going but there'd
be riots if home heating gas hiked up the costs scale in the scheme of things...

this can easily find it's way into the car's tank if you're handy with things... wink.gif

Don't forget as well, if the installation is done properly and you use a donut tank under the floor
you keep the car's carrying capacity but also the existing fuel tank to actually INCREASE the
car's touring range not decrease it, hence preventing worries about finding the next tank
- actually there's loads of places when you start to actually look for something, it's easier to
see on a daily basis.

The worst compromise is the lack of a spare for that 1 in 10 times in your life puncture!
Most Alfa's and even Smarts new today don't come with a spare either and realistically how
often are most folk far away from home/family/friends back up should our rubbish roads
start racking up the puncture count!!

Hi Sam,

Unfortunately, as xmexclusive has written elsewhere on the forum, rear seats from a hatchback won't fit into an estate.

Hi citroenxm, I knew you'd leap to the defence of your beloved V6, but I didn't say that the older 24 valvers didn't accelerate well - I said As well as the later model. In other words, the designers sacrificed 6 horsepower at the top of the rev range to gain torque in the mid range. If there was no advantage they wouldn't have changed the design.

Hi Mike, I take your point that the 4HP18 (and the later 4HP20) autoboxes have fixed change up points on a light throttle, but the published graphs for the 4HP20 show higher change ups with wider throttle openings and a distinct difference in speed between change up and change down points so as to eliminate hunting between gears. I havn't taken much notice of the 4HP18 behaviour in that respect, but I have seen 45mph in second and 60 in third when accelerating in the turbo. As someone who used to snick into 5th at 30mph in my BX 16TRS I too wish there was some way I could get my cars into top gear at a lower speed but I suppose it's what the market demanded.

am inclined to agree with onthecut's comment about the change speeds and found I didn't get on with the 2.0sei auto I had. It did have a habit of hunting in town, but also did make life easier when crawling along in traffic, which made a nice break from stirring the manual box and the heavy clutch...

Wasn't too happy when on gentle throttle on a wet roundabout it decided to change up either - yes, ok, maybe I was going a bit quick, but always do. Ended up in a slide, but wasn't a big problem.

Oh, and I believe the hatch rear seat can be made to fit the estate, can't recall exactly how, think Lez has done this before though. Mod to the bracker or something.


Hi All

The car rear seat back is narrower but hinge positions identical to an estate. The brackets for the lock bolts need an extension welded on them. The side squabs have to be changed and the boot side trim no longer fits properly.


Hi Peter,

Re: LPG.

If a suitable car comes up again [ 2.ltr Turbo or late V6 with LPG ] - then I'll definitely go for it.

I was hesitating [ too long ! ] about that white one on e-bay just before Xmas. Same as my XM but + LPG. I think it went for about £650.

I bid £600 anyway, but unfortunately was out when the auction ended and I forgot all about it!

That was definitely a bargain, as the LPG and tanks [ x 2 ] were worth double that on their own. Just one of those things.

I have always been a fan of "big" engines, especially V6 / V8, and I especially like the PVR V6. I've had several cars fitted with variants of the engine, and all have been faultless. Renault 25 Turbo and my Alpine GTA turbos being the most exciting versions.

We seem to be getting at a parting of the ways with XM's - those who "just own them" as just another car - and those of us who knows what they're really worth


Also love the PRV. Probably the new V6 will produce less vibrations but not the unique sound of the PRV -it has something of a V8 growl that I love-. The 12v has a virtually flat torque curve -it only gains 3kgs from idle to 4600rpm, because it already delivers 20kg at idle-. This characteristic is very useful for relaxed driving, as well as not to have to resort all the time to the gearbox in city-driving. Note that the 12v beats the 24v PRV for torque up to 2000rpm. Of course the 12v then dies quickly above its pick torque -no use getting it past 5000, I found-. I've not driven a 24v PRV but prob that's when it pays its money back. The new 24v delivers 1 or 2 kgs of max torque more than the older engines, but I guess it is also not very lively until 2000, plus, the fact that S2 cars are slightly heavier than S1s penalises it. But then S2s win in smoothness -what Derek enjoys in every trip- as they have better insulation it seems. All in all performance however, any aspect of it, must be very similar with a PRV 24v. Someone should really undertake the task of documenting all this for the speednutters in here...unfortunatelly I don't have the time right now sad.gif

PRV engines are undestructuble, I have never read any having any kind of critical damage. On the other hand, I'm starting to know that their manual boxes are not faultless. BTW the PRV holds the record for the strongest ever production-based engine that "Le Mans 24" prototypes had -it had reached about 900bhp on those Peugeots-.

V6's are too thirsty for me, but looking at XM's has reignited a love for Citroens that's been in me for a long while, and now I'm thinking about buying a CX estate as well.

I think I've found myself an XM, anyhow - should be picking one up next Thursday.
Come on then Sam. Do pick up the story from where it was left off on Cx Club!!

Not sure what else there is to tell! I used to pass a DS on my way to school every day as a 9-10 year old, and fell in love. Additionally, someone I knew had a CX Break that I used to drool over (never got to sit in it though). Around that time, I started reading every car book I could find, and came to the conclusion that my first car would be a GS Break.

The first car I actually owned was a Renault 4, a project that never got off the driveway, and I didn't pass my test til I was 24. The first vehicle that I really owned and drove was a 1971 Bedford YRQ Plaxton Panorama Elite II bus, which we converted to a mobile home, and drove to India and back. On returning to England, we had a Fiesta which cost us £40, but once my new job started to kick in, and I could afford to spend big on a car (!) I dropped £700 on a BX, thereby sort of fulfilling my childhood dream (I'd so much rather it had been a GS!). I ran that for about a year, with ongoing LHM leak problems, before it dropped its cambelt. I did try to fit a second hand head, but I suspect it needed a skim, and I had no money. Regrettably, it got scrapped. I had to replace it immediately, and had £150, so ended up with an awful Montego estate, which led onto other uninspiring cars (Cavalier, Peugeot 406 Estate), and then a spell of company cars.

I'd not thought again about owning a Citroen, mostly because of the sort of prices you see when one is in Practical Classics for sale, so we stumbled into buying a Herald Convertible (it was a bargain). I was considering whether I could afford a classic myself, and was looking at things like a Riley Elf. Imagine my surprise when I learned that for the price of a decent Elf, I could have an XM, a CX AND a GS. I had no idea!

So, now an XM is almost mine, a CX is on the horizon, and I'll confess to keeping my ear to the ground for a GSA. An AMI 6 would be nice, wouldn't it? I realise I'm consigning myself to a life of underbonnet tinkering, but the rewards are good......
V6's are too thirsty for me

They are only when compared to diesels. And as for smoothness or acceleration there's no comparing the two biggrin.gif
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