CitroŽn DS4 1.6 THP 155 EGS Review
Anything but ordinary

Story by Raymond Lai Photos by Yang and Raymond Lai
17 Feb 2012
 

Citroen expands its DS range with the Golf sized DS4, Raymond Lai checks out the latest in French eccentricity.

Introduction, styling

Not satisfied with just its mainstream model range, Citroen reintroduced the DS name a couple of years back with the stylish Mini rival, the DS3. For the uninitiated, Citroen’s DS moniker is adopted from the original DS, a Citroen model that was in production from the 1950s to 70s. The original DS’ unmistakable looks and advanced technologies at that time have made it one of the most significant cars of the 20th century. Its name was basically derived from the French word ‘d esse’ which means goddess.

Right from the off, Citroen had said that the DS3 will not be the only DS model it will introduce. Now, part deux of the resurrection of the DS name is finally here. The DS4 sits above the DS3 and is basically a Golf sized five-door hatchback with a mix of coupe and crossover SUV overtones. As its ‘4’ moniker suggests, the DS4 shares much in common with the second gen C4 under the skin but has its own unique interior and sheet metal on the outside.

Citroen is considered as the epitome of quirkiness among the three top French car brands. After being lost and confused for a long time in the way they styled their cars (think the Xsara, Xantia and first gen C5), the double chevron brand finally went back to its idiosyncratic and eccentric style with models like the C6, C4 and the C4 Grand Picasso - these cars proved that the good old Citroen has found its distinctive style once again. The DS4 follows in the line of quirky Citroens with its somewhat eccentric looks.

From its looks, it is hard to decipher what the DS4’s closest rivals are. Sure, it’s a five-door hatchback in the mould of the Golf but the hidden rear door handles and bizarrely, the fixed rear windows suggest a coupe while the raised ride height hints at a SUV. The DS4 probably has a wide range of rivals then, from the family hatchback like the abovementioned Golf to crossovers like the Nissan Qashqai and Mini Countryman and affordable coupes like the Scirocco.

Opinions might be split when classifying the DS4 as a crossover SUV or family hatchback but you’d have to agree with me that the DS4 is one cool looking car. At the front, the Double Chevron grille takes centre stage between the wraparound sculpted headlamps while the heavily sculpted bumper features boomerang-shaped LED daytime running lights that are neatly integrated within the fog lamp surrounds. It is from the side where the DS4 looks at its most distinctive. With minimal overhangs, the DS4 has that wheel-at-each-corner stance while the rakish windscreen, gently sloping roofline and hidden rear door handles give it the profile of a coupe. The SUV-like raised ride height is complimented by the heavily flared wheel arches that house purposeful looking 18-inch alloys on the THP 155 model tested here. The creases along the flanks also help to give the DS4 its own unique visual character. The rear is no less distinctive thanks to its wraparound tail lamps that feature boomerang shaped lenses and there are more creases on the rear bumper that compliment those on the sides of the car and front bumper.

Adventurous is the best word to describe the DS4’s overall styling and stance. There’s no doubt that it is a distinctive and interesting looking car that the French ought to be proud of in a sea of Golfs and Qashqais.


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Engine

Engine Capacity 1598cc Turbocharged
Engine Type Inline 4
Bore x Stroke (77 X 85.8)mm
Power 155bhp @ 6000rpm
Torque 240Nm @ 1600rpm
Power to Weight 125 bhp per ton

Performance

Acceleration 9.9s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 214 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 19.6 km/L

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 6 -speed EGS
Drive Type FF

Measurements

Body Type 3 Door Hatch
Dimension
(L x W x H)
(4275 x 1810 x 1533) mm
Wheelbase 2612 mm
Kerb Weight 1240 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity 60 L

Brakes

Brakes (Front) Discs
Brakes (Rear) Discs