a win­ner

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Prestige -

Technology

AN 88kW/160Nm 1.6-litre will be com­ing soon with a four-speed au­to­matic, but the first cars to ar­rive are the 115kW/320Nm tur­bocharged 1.6-litre — also used by the BMW Mini and the new Peu­geot RCZ — but with only a six-speed man­ual in the Citroen.

Both ver­sions get sports-tuned pseu­doMacpher­son-strut front sus­pen­sion and flex­i­ble beam rear and vari­able elec­tric pow­eras­sisted steer­ing.

Safety

DISC brakes with ven­ti­la­tion on the front are stan­dard, as are the anti-skid, brake­force dis­tri­bu­tion and brake-boost technology, and sta­bil­ity and trac­tion con­trol.

Crash pro­tec­tion in­cludes six airbags, side im­pact pro­tec­tion and seat­belt pre­ten­sion­ers. Rear park as­sist is a fac­tory op­tion.

Driv­ing

OUR car was kit­ted out with a host of op­tions, and the first we would have crossed off the list was the cen­tre arm­rest, which you have to flip up and out of the way to com­fort­ably use the man­ual shifter.

But you get over that an­noy­ance fairly quickly, once you kick off the line and find that within min­utes you’re en­joy­ing your­self.

The car con­nects with you, with plenty of pick-up from the 115kW en­gine, and the man­ual’s smooth, pre­cise ac­tion makes it fun to use — and even bear­able in peak-hour city traf­fic.

Slightly firm sus­pen­sion helps it around cor­ners, but man­ages to take care of most bumps with­out it skit­ter­ing around. How­ever, noth­ing seems to get rid of the tyre noise.

The lug­gage area is nec­es­sar­ily small, but the rear eas­ily folds flat, of­fer­ing a great load space. The ques­tion will be how the auto goes be­cause the 88kW en­gine is likely to be far less re­spon­sive.

Ver­dict

CHIC and a lit­tle idio­syn­cratic, but a lot of fun.

Smooth: the Citroen DS3 has a style that re­sists the re­cent re­vival in retro cues.

cars­guide.com.au

PRES­TIGE NEWS:

Fer­rari F1 pi­lots Felipe Massa and Fer­nando Alonso have a new car in their garages af­ter their 1-3 fin­ish at Monza. The pair each re­ceived an Abarth 695 Trib­uto Fer­rari.

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