Feisty firecracker with touch of luxury

DS 3 Crossback

By Bill McCarthy

The DS brand’s efforts to distinguish itself as the more luxury arm of Citroen are working if this firecrackers is anything to go by.

It’s difficult know where to start on this one. DS is seeking to be the jewel in the crown for parent group PSA, it takes that theme on literally, and with stye

Add to this state of the art technology and innovation and luxury finish and you have a small, but luxurious hatcback/SUV/crossover.

The DS has a choice of four engines, three petrol and one diesel, with this model featuring the most powerful petrol engine.

Visually outstanding, with its curvy outline and eye-catching alloy wheels, its funky looks certainly grabbed the attention. The interior too is stunning.

 The front end features the “DS wings” grille, flanked by the LED matrix headlights on this model and vertical daytime running lights. There is also a two tone roof option. Another clever touch are the flush door handles, which pop out when the door is unlocked via keyless entry and settle back into place when the door is closed. The rear is also chic with twin exhausts and the powered boot lid featuring the DS monogram.

The jewel theme continues inside with diamond shapes galore and  a quirky control setup for dash and centre console. This, unusually, houses the electric window controls while on this model the eight speed auto gearbox selector take central position. This model also features sports seats and aluminium sports pedals.

 The air vents sport the diamond shape, as do the major touch button controls below the  touchscreen.

The 10-inch screen  controls the  music, connectivity and sat nav functions. Smartphone connection is via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto while a TFT information display sits behind the flat-bottomed multi-function steering wheel.

The whole interior feels luxurious with soft touch finish throughout and in this case Nappa leather seats with pearl stitching and suede type finish.

Head and legroom are surprisingly good in the front although tighter for rear seat passengers. Everything feels well engineered and screwed together. 

Boot space is pretty good with 350 litres expanding 1,050 litres with the sats folded, giving really usable stowage space..

On the road, the growl of the three pot engine is a delight. The 155bhp allows the car to accelerate to 60mph in a very lively 8.6 seconds while eight speed auto slides through the gears effortlessly. Sporty of course, but economical as well with a claimed 40-plus mpg and lowish CO2 emissions. 

The handling is good, with a grippy feel through corners while the ride is a little on the firm side, but still comfortable enough. Goodies on this model include eight speaker sound system, Bluetooth® handsfree and media streaming with USB socket, multi-function on-board trip computer and a 3D navigation system, plus a host of safety kit and driver aids including head up display, assisted parking.

A luxurious small car certainly that is a funky, but high end alternative to its competitors.

As a result, not cheap, the entry level comes in £21,555 but it stands up well, particularly with standard equipment, against its competitors.

This model will set you back £32,455, but is literaly packed with gizmos, gadgets and high end equipment.

Factfile

DS3 Crossback Ultra Prestige Puretech 155 auto

Price: £32,455

Mechanical: 155bhp, 1,199cc, three cylinder petrol engine driving four wheels via 8-speed automatic gearbox

Max speed: 130mph

0-62mph: 8.2 seconds

Combined mpg: 40.6

Insurance: 24

CO2 emissions: 128g/km

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles


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