All in all, a thoroughly decent car and one which I would recommend. It never fails to start, is fairly comfortable and refined and returns 40 miles per gallon.
Find the right road and, despite it's sluggish performance and slightly vague steering, and the car will entertain. The steering and suspension setup though, is not a patch on the Peugeot 306 on which it is based or even the Xsara's predecessor the ZX. Gear-change is horrible too.
It's quite a decent car for long journeys and performs actually quite well on the motorway.
Boot is huge and will easily carry three of four cases! My only gripe with it is that the rear seat does not split and fold - it can only be folded in one piece, and even then is not exactly flat.
Not too much room in the back for tall passengers if, especially behind the driver's seat if the driver is tall.
Cabin is trimmed quite gloomily and the dashboard especially is made from incredibly cheap and shiny plastic. It is well equipped however, with electric front windows, remote central locking, analogue climate control and four airbags. No CD player though.
The exterior of the car is not only dull to look at, but dents and scratches very easily. However, there is not a speck of rust and you can't see the outside of the car when you're travelling anyway.
Despite the rather hefty-looking list of faults above in just 18 months of ownership, this for me at least, is a very reliable car and one which I'd trust to take me anywhere. Other people seem to paint a different picture though...