A new vehicle which turned a lot of heads while in my company was the DS7 Crossback, many of which asked the question; what is it?
My reply was that the DS is a French car brand which was reborn in June 2014. The ambition by DS is to embody in the automotive industry the French luxury know-how. Driven by its outstanding heritage and avant-garde spirit, DS perpetuates the values of innovation and distinction inherited from the first DS, launched in 1955. Designed for customers looking for a means to express themselves as individuals, the DS Collection comprises a variety of models headed by the DS 7 Crossback.
As I discovered with my week with the DS7 it stands out with avant-garde design, refinement and attention to detail, advanced technology and dynamic serenity. The DS7 Crossback ushers in the second generation of DS models which are committed to high-performance hybrid and electric cars and next year the DS 7 Crossback E-TENSE 4×4 Hybrid will be launched.
My test car was in Prestige trim finished in Cumulus Grey which did give the overall touch of quality aided by the nineteen inch Roma grey diamond cut ally wheels. On climbing onboard I immediately had the feeling of luxury and my eyes went to the stylish B.R.M clock perched high on the dash and when the engine is switched off the clock simply folds down. This newcomer simply bristles with a touch of diamonds and everything is majored on style. It is simply a car that when you travel in it you get a great feeling, perhaps rare today. There were many surprises with the DS7, for example it was powered by a 1.6 litre petrol engine which felt more like a two litre, however turbo charging did provide that extra boost and output is a healthy 225bhp. The eager power unit allied to an eight speed automatic transmission with seamless gear changes. Performance wise, rest to 100kph (62mph) in an effortless manner in just over eight seconds and where legal a top speed of 227kph (141mph). There was stopping power aplenty, from the servo assisted, X-split circuit system, complete with ABS, EBD and ESC.
On the practical side, there is room aplenty for five to travel in comfort with the added bonus of an extremely comfy ride thanks to the first rate suspension set up. Boot space is 618 litres and if the need arises, the rear seat backs can be dropped in true hatchback style. Looking ahead and the first model of the second-generation DS range, DS 7 Crossback, the Premium C SUV with innovative savoir-faire, opens a range of six global vehicles with one launch per year and the DS brand has presented its next new ‘Premium B SUV’, the DS 3 Crossback, the high-tech style icon, and with its 100% electric version E-TENSE. Available next year, the DS 7 Crossback E-TENSE 4X4, the PHEV hybrid power train by DS and DS 3 Crossback E-TENSE, the first ever full electric DS car which delivers the strategy of electrification availability over the entire range. For its discerning customers, who demand personalisation and exclusivity, DS has created ‘ONLY YOU, the DS experience’, as a programme of exclusive services for a unique brand experience. I attended the Paris Motor Show and not unexpectedly DS were making quite a big shout re the DS family and I could see that this brand means a lot to the French in a way which the premium brands mean to Germans. I have to admit I was rather taken by the DS7 Crossback, it is always good for the industry to welcome something fresh and new.