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25 May 2022

Kildare Motoring Review: French comfort and luxury from the DS3 Crossback

Motoring review: The DS3 Crossback — from the people who brought you Citroen

Kildare Motoring Review: French comfort and luxury from the DS3 Crossback

The DS3 Crossback

The DS brand is the luxury version of the iconic French brand Citroën, (now part of the Stellantis Group which includes Peugeot, Citroën, DS, Fiat, Opel, Alfa Romeo and JEEP). The DS 3 name was used before on a stylish three-door hatchback that was marketed across Europe as a Citroën DS 3, but in 2016 the Citroën part of the name was discarded, and DS then became a standalone brand in its own right.

After almost a decade, the DS 3 has been discontinued and the DS 3 Crossback is its indirect replacement.

Premium Style and Function

The DS 3 Crossback is a very stylish crossover that is aimed squarely at the Audi Q2 and BMW X1, along with higher-end versions of the Mazda CX-30, Toyota C-HR and Ford Puma. There is a generous amount of standard equipment across the range, and it is obvious that the car has been designed with occupant comfort in mind. Thanks to a bold front end with a large grille taking centre stage, a distinctive kick in the window line on the car’s profile, and large badging to the rear, the new DS 3 Crossback truly looks like nothing else on the road.

The Crossback’s flush door handles protrude out when you unlock the car, and pop back into place when the car is driven. There are plenty of personalisation options, with nine exterior colours, three contrasting roof colours and multiple alloy wheel design/colour combinations available throughout the range.

Fully Digital Cockpit

The DS 3 Crossback features a fully digital cockpit that was created to make important driving information instantly available, with controls that are placed directly at the driver’s fingertips. Advanced technology, and a high driving position, allow drivers to concentrate on the road ahead and access controls via the wide 10.3-inch HD touchscreen, with driving information displayed on the 7-inch digital display.

Beneath the touchscreen, the central fascia is stylish with the touch controls and two central air vents designed in the shape of diamonds.

Overall comfort inside the DS 3 is exceptional. For the front and rear seats, DS engineers have incorporated double density foam using an innovative treatment to give a base that is enveloping and of high quality. Additionally, the use of superior insulation in critical areas around the DS 3 Crossback ensures that road noise is kept to an absolute minimum.

Five-Door Body Style

Unlike the original DS 3, the new DS 3 Crossback is only available as a five door hatchback/crossover (leading to the creation of the Crossback name tag), and is based on the CMP platform which underpins the latest Peugeot 208/2008, Opel Corsa/Mokka and Citroën C4.

This means that the DS 3 Crossback was designed from the ground up to accommodate both petrol and diesel powertrains, as well as all-electric power. In a similar fashion to its E-Tense sibling, the petrol-powered DS 3 Crossback is available in Elegance, Performance Line and Prestige trim variants. A 1.2-litre PureTech engine is available in the three trims — 100, 130 and 155bhp — and all, but the 100bhp version, come with an eight-speed automatic transmission (EAT8) as standard, while a six-speed manual transmission is reserved for the lower powered engine.

Also available is a 1.5-litre BlueHDi turbo-diesel engine (110bhp) for drivers who prefer to fill up from the black pump at a service station.

Boot space varies between 350-litres when the rear seat backs are in place and 1,050-litres when they are folded down.

Test Car Details

My test car was a DS 3 Crossback 1.2-litre PureTech 130 Elegance EAT8 which looked spectacular in Perla Nera Black metallic paintwork and stylish 17” diamond-cut two-tone alloy wheels.

The peppy 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine ensures there is always plenty of power available for safe overtaking for example. With 130bhp and 230Nm of torque on offer, the car can complete the 0-100km/h sprint in just 9.2-seconds, and achieve a top speed of 200km/h (where permitted) while returning up to 46.3mpg on a combined driving cycle.

Unsurprisingly, the DS 3 Crossback provides drivers with a thoroughly relaxed on-road experience, while all occupants will relish the comfortable and supportive seats. A consistent steering response makes it easy to point the car in the right direction every time, with well controlled body roll through corners, along with excellent levels of grip, ensuring the car remains surefooted and composed at all times. With 170mm of ground clearance and a proud stance on the road, the DS 3 Crossback combines the rugged appeal of an SUV with the practicality of a family hatchback.

Price and Warranty

For buyers looking for a practical, comfortable, super-stylish and upmarket crossover, the DS 3 Crossback makes a strong first impression.

On-the-road pricing starts at €30,165 and a 5-year/100,000km manufacturer’s warranty comes as standard for total peace-of-mind motoring into the future.

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