CITROEN’S recently launched DS4, the second car in the up market DS line, has something to live up to for it has already been voted “Most Beautiful Car of the Year” along with other top awards.
The new DS line started with the DS3 which made an immediate impact on the market and was one of the most impressive Citroens of the modern era I have driven.
DS4 is based on the Citroen C4 but it has been transformed into a completely different car with cool styling although calling it the most beautiful car of the year is a bit over the top especially as there other new cars still to be launched in the last quarter of 2011.
Citroen is obviously hoping for the DS4 making as good an impact as the DS3 for as well as aiming it at rivals like the Golf, Qashqai and Mini Countryman it has also listed up market cars like the Audi A3 and BMW 1 Series as “key rivals”.
So it was with considerable interest that I started my test drive of the DS4 in the DStyle HDi 160 six speed model costing £22,950 - the range starts at £18,150.
It was powered by a 2.0-litre diesel engine producing 163bhp with a very smooth six speed manual gearbox, a top speed of 132mph, a zero to 62mph time of 9.3 seconds and a combined fuel consumption of 55.4mpg - the on board computer recorded consumption as about 10mpg less than this figure.
As mentioned earlier the DS4 is a good looker and is equally as good inside where it has a very comfortable and user friendly interior.
This includes the controls and instrumentation although I found the speedometer difficult to see in certain light conditions but fortunately there is also a digital speedo which is much easier to see.
An unusual feature about the rear of the five door car is that the windows are fixed and it is not possible to open them - I can’t think of another car of this type with fixed rear windows.
The DS4 makes for an enjoyable and lively drive with positive steering and firmish suspension with a sizeable boot under which is a space saver spare wheel.
There is a huge windscreen and plenty of standard equipment including daytime-running headlamps but the excellent xenon headlamps were an optional extra on the test car.
The DS4 did not create such an immediate impact on me as the DS3 but it is an attractive car from the latest Citroen stable which indicates that the famous French manufacturer is once again making desirable cars with flair and style.
My Verdict: Another impressive up market DS Citroen.
Model: Citroen DStyle DS4 GDi 160.
Engine: 2.0-litre four cylinder diesel.
Output: 163bhp @ 3750rpm.
Transmission: Six speed manual.
Top speed: 132mph.
Acceleration: 0 to 62mph 9.3 seconds.
Fuel consumption: 55.4mpg combined.
CO2 emissions: 134g/km.