mobile phone link image
jobs page link image
 
follow us on facebook follow us on twitter
day
00  Month

New DS3 Cabrio on the road

 
Created on 08/03/2016 @ 11:26
SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend


Test Drive by Graham Breeze

It’s taken some time but now you really can tell a DS3 from a Citroen, with the newly launched Cabrio targeting Mini sales in the UK.

There wasn’t much difference since the separation of the posher DS brand from Citroen back in 2014 but now DS3 has been given a proper facelift and I was lucky enough to be in the first group of UK journalists to drive the new Cabrio.

DS Automobiles was formed to revive the tradition of premium vehicles, targeting customers keen to express their individual taste and is surprisingly well priced.

The range starts at £13,995 and £16,295 for the stylish Cabrio and there are five trim levels – Chic, Elegance, Prestige, Ultra Prestige and Performance.

The biggest change is up front where a DS-badged hexagonal grille has replaced the Citroen design and there are smarter headlights using a combination of LED and Xenons to give a new look. 

Attractive new alloys have been added and there’s plenty of personalisation options with 10 roof decals and four different roof finishes available on the Cabrio as part of a huge choice of colour and trim combinations.

Inside you are quickly aware that DS3 is in the 21st century with a myriad of dash colour combinations to pick from and all the gizmo bits we are becoming to expect as standard these days. That means you get a 7” touchscreen featuring Apple CarPlay and MirrorLink smartphone connectivity.

A new DS Connect Box option includes an SOS and Assistance Pack and a remote tracking system, while safety tech such as Active City Braking added across the range.

 

DS bosses were happy with the engine range, so buyers can still take their pick from the 1.2-litre PureTech three-cylinder turbo petrol, plus two four-cylinder THP turbo petrols and two BlueHDi diesels.

But there will soon be a sporty new addition. The DS3 Racing in both hatchback and Cabrio forms, newly named as DS Performance.

The Active City Brake system helps to prevent minor collisions at low speeds with a short-range sensor, located at the top of the windscreen, picking up obstacles such as a stationary vehicle. It brakes at speeds of up to 18mph without the driver having to touch the brake pedal.

New DS 3 is also equipped with front and rear parking sensors, a reversing camera with visual indicator guide lines on the 7-inch screen and Hill Start Assist.

It’s a comfortable ride up-front but you need a pair of very short legs to enjoy the ride in the back over any distance and there is really only room for two. Access to the boot is poor on the Cabrio, with a narrow gateway and there is no chance of finding room for the golf clubs in there, despite the claim of 245litres of space..

Handling has improved thanks to the suspension being lowered by 15mm and the front and rear tracks widened, so there is a real sporty feel about this new DS and you can open or close the roof at speeds of up to 70mph – rain prevented that test though.

There was an impressive 126mph to speed from the Cabrio Prestige, three cylinder 130hp model on test with six-speed manual gearbox, which had an on-the-road price tag of ££21,095.

There was 0-62mph in 9 seconds and emission levels of 105g/km, putting the car in the Band B road fund licence category, which means a benefit in kind rating of 16%. Running costs will also be kept down by average fuel consumption of 62.8mpg.

There’s no doubt that this DS3 stands out in the crowd and will attract the buyer with an eye on individuality but there’s an awful lot of opposition in the supermini sector and it might just be a hard slog achieving sales targets in 2016.

 

icnn logo