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Citroen DS3 Review The DS 3 was a breakthrough car for Citroen, and was such a success that it prompted the firm to launch its DS brand with the DS 3 as its core model.
The Citroen DS3 was launched in 2010 and received a mild facelift in oakley type sunglasses 2014 where new engines were introduced. In 2016, it finally shed its Citroen identity in favour of DS only branding, and was brought up to date with the rest of the line up. A hot Performance model was added to complete the range, too.These constant updates mean that the DS 3 still looks fresh at least on the outside. It's elegant, classy and boasts a premium design that hasn't dated much. It's more charismatic than an Audi A1, but the cabin ergonomics and quality aren't in the same league as the latest MINI hatch.Factor in a drive that doesn't blend competent handling with a particularly comfortable ride and its clear the DS 3 is in need of a replacement soon. That's a shame, because the engines are very good.Many will still find themselves calling the DS 3 a Citroen but they shouldn't. The supermini was the figurehead of the launch of 'DS' as a luxury sub brand early last year, with a facelift abandoning the Citroen chevrons and bringing along bespoke badging.You can get the DS 3 in two body styles, either a three door hatchback or a two door Cabrio. Going for the latter means you have to sacrifice a fair bit of boot space for the wind in the hair appeal, and even then the roll back canvas roof isn't a proper convertible like a MINI. If you need more than three doors, then your only option is the Citroen C3, as there's no five door DS 3.The original Citroen DS3 came with 1.4 and 1.6 litre petrol engines, but the 2014 facelift introduced a 1.2 litre PureTech three cylinder. This engine is a good performer, with decent mid range pulling power and improved economy and refinement. The 2016 launch of the DS brand saw the DS 3 get another facelift and a 128bhp version of the engine added to the line up. Diesel engines comprise the 1.6 BlueHDi with either 99bhp or 118bhp, although the petrol engines suit the DS 3's refined character better.2016 also saw the arrival of the DS 3 Performance hot hatch. It's similar in concept to the limited edition Citroen DS3 Racing, but is now a full production model. It has a 204bhp 1.6 litre turbo petrol engine, stiffer suspension, a Torsen diff and beefier brakes, and is designed to take on the MINI Cooper S.Prices start from around 14,500 for the base DS 3 Chic, while the range tops out at a staggering 25,500. Trims range from Chic, through Elegance and Performance Line, to Prestige and the expensive Ultra Prestige.There are frequent special editions launched with extra kit and exclusive colours and graphics, while the Performance and Performance Black models top the range. The special edition BRM Chronographes is the priciest car in the range, and comes with an exclusive wristwatch.Like MINI, the DS 3 can be personalised with a sale oakley sunglasses huge variety of options and packs, so no two DS 3's need to be alike. It's the same kind of personalisation you'll also find on theFiat 500, setting the car apart next to cheaper superminis.While the DS 3 is designed to take on MINI, it also competes with the Audi A1, the Vauxhall Adam and upmarket versions of the Peugeot 208. The latter is similar to the DS 3 under the skin, and it can be had with five doors, too.Traditionally, Citroen (and DS) favoured comfort over outright driving dynamics. The DS 3 attempted to balance that out at launch with a decent blend of tidy handling and a reasonably composed ride. Unfortunately, as over half a decade has passed since that car's launch, the standard in the sector has risen.The ride on most surfaces is pretty smooth, yet rough roads can cause it to crash and thud into bad potholes. Models fitted with 17 inch wheels are the worst culprits,while there's also a sport suspension option. Both seem to have a marked effect on the ride quality, reflected in reader feedback from the Auto Express Driver Power survey. The 2016 facelift hasn't done much to rectify this. Road noise is also far too evident on all but the smoothest surfaces.Similar criticisms can be levelled at the DS 3 Performance, although stiffer suspension is more forgiveable in a hot hatch. Still, it's firmer than a lot of its more entertaining peers.As for handling, the DS 3 is a big contrast to the soft, rolly Citroens of old. It retains good body control in most situations, just without the last bit of driver pleasing bite that characterises the MINI. Even so, it turns in neatly and the steering weight builds nicely when you press on, while the car's overall balance and stability are feel good and confidence inspiring. Even if it can't match it Brit built rival, it's arguably more fun than an Audi A1.The manual gearshift has quite a long throw, however, while mens cheap oakley sunglasses the steering feels a bit slow in small movements. No complaints with the EAT6 automatic though: this is a full torque converter and suits the DS 3's luxurious character well.The DS 3 Performance builds on the existing car but the firmer suspension helps it feel taut and agile. The front differential keeps it very tidy in the corners with no understeer, while the steering is more direct than the regular car. It's definitely another level of driving fun, but there's some seriously competitive hot hatches around for that price.Lower end petrol engines used to be a bit of a weakness with the DS 3, but improvements in 2014 introduced the new PureTech engines that are a big step on. This 82PS engine is a relatively recent introduction and it's smooth enough, but you're better off with the 1.2 litre PureTech 110 which does have a turbo. This almost doubles its pulling power and nearly halves the engine revs at which this peak torque is produced; as such, it's nearly three seconds faster from 0 62mph. It's a striking step usa oakleys up for a relatively small price jump.The PureTech 110 is the only DS 3 engine available with a self shifting EAT6 gearbox alongside the regular five speed manual. It's a full automatic gearbox, rather than a more compromised automated manual the effect on performance and fuel economy is minimal too.The larger four cylinder 1.6 litre THP 165 only comes with a six speed manual but gives almost hot hatch like performance: 0 62mph takes a swift 7.5 seconds and it will do 135mph. It's not cheap, though, and you'll have more fun with a Ford Fiesta ST for significantly less.The full hot hatch experience comes with the DS 3 Performance's 204bhp 1.6 litre turbo. It boasts a healthy 300Nm of torque, and also gets shorter gear ratios to aid performance. It does 0 62mph in 6.5 seconds, and feels every bit as quick as that figure suggests.The diesel choice is a single 1.6 litre turbo engine in either BlueHDi 100 or BlueHDi 120 guise. The more powerful engine is faster, by a reasonable sounding 1.5 seconds to 0 62mph (it takes 9.3 seconds instead of 10.8) but peak torque isn't that much greater. The biggest advantage to it may be in its motorway optimised six speed manual gearbox the lower power version only has five gears.The DS 3's modern engine range really delivers when it comes to fuel economy. It's the 1.2 litre PureTech engines that are the real standouts every single version, be it 82PS or 110PS power output, five speed manual or four speed automatic, averages over 60mpg. This is extremely impressive and combined with CO2 emissions of less than 107g/km.The more powerful 1.6 litre THP 165 is thirstier, but even its claimed average of 50.4mpg is impressive considering its performance, while the 204bhp version isn't much worse. Like all DS 3 engines apart from the basic PureTech 82, this motor gets S engine stop start as standard, which helps cut fuel consumption and emissions in stop start traffic.If the petrol engines are good, the 1.6 litre BlueHDi diesels take things to another level. The BlueHDi 100 will return 83.
1mpg on the combined cycle, and even in town it claims 74.3mpg. This is combined with CO2 emissions of 87g/km.
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