The Citroen DS3 test car had chrome rubbing strips and mirror housings, which adds a touch of stylish, 'bling' to the outside.
The Citroen DS3 test car had chrome rubbing strips and mirror housings, which adds a touch of stylish, 'bling' to the outside. However, the interior has its own share of shiny surfaces. The dashboard finish does vary with the trim level and the DSport should have had a carbon fibre panel but instead there was a swathe of glossy black stretching across the cabin interspersed with chrome highlights to the switches, buttons and instrument dials. Much of this will be familiar to existing Citroen customers, the trapezoidal hazard-warning button, the air vents and the fragrance diffuser, for instance.
At the junction of the glossy panel and the centre console, sits the 7-inch screen for the satellite navigation system. Sat-nav is an option, no matter what the trim level and comes in two forms; My Way City and My Way City Signature.
These navigation packages have other goodies thrown in for good measure. For example, the My Way Signature includes automatic digital air conditioning, the navigation system with European mapping, live traffic information and Bluetooth technology.
Insert the word 'City' and the bundle includes Mood Lighting, automatic lights and wipers, electrochromic rear-view mirror, rear parking sensors, heated and folding door mirrors and a central armrest at the front as well as the components of My Way Signature.
The prices for both vary according to the trim level of the Citroen DS3. Take the latter package, for instance; on the DSign, base model it adds £1,500 to the price, in the DStyle, it costs an extra £1,300 and £1,100 on the DSport. The reason for the price difference is because some of the component parts are already on board as part of the standard feature list.
This is just one example of the option price structure - there are many more, simply in the personalisation programme for colours. Not only are there 11 body colours but there are four roof colours, all of which can be specified on the dashboard, the wheel trims and the key fob. On top of that, there are patterned roof transfers: Vibe, Pearl, Zebra and Urban Tribe. These add £350 and include matching floor mats. There are no less than eight options for the door mirror housings, five for the gearknob and three Roofscapes, which are stripes that extend from roof to bonnet. Phew!
But back to the Citroen DS3's interior and the options continue with the upholstery choices - two plain fabrics, three Aitken cloth and Alcantara colourways and three leather colours. Whatever the choice of covering, the front seats remain sporty with heavy bolstering providing plenty of support, because this is a car that demands to be driven. Comfort is assured but while all drivers have the benefit of height-adjustable seats, only the front passenger of the DSport is afforded the same facility.
While the Citroen DS3 is slightly larger, all round, than the MINI and more elbow- and headroom the Alfa Romeo MiTo, both of which are main competitors, Legroom for the three rear passengers is in short supply. During the test period my rear passenger 'guineapig' complained at the harshness of the ride, especially over speed humps and uneven surfaces. That will be the non-optional sports suspension at work.
The rear seats have a 66:33 split and fold, which increases the capacity of the deep boot from 285-to 980-litres. Again, this is more than the main competitors.
Citroen DS3 Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Citroen DS3 1.6 THP 150 DSport|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||7.3 seconds|
|Top Speed||133 mph|
|Fuel Type||Unleaded Petrol|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||55.4 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3 years / 60000 miles|
|Price (when tested on the 07/07/10)||£15,900|