Citroen DS3 – the best car of 2010?

The Top Gear car of the year has been announced, and it came as no surprise to some to see a humble small car top the charts ahead of the supercar elite.

This is because the winner wasn’t an ordinary supermini; instead it was the excellent Citroen DS3, the car credited with propelling Citroen from run-of-the-mill French manufacturer to desirable and relevant car maker within weeks.

But don’t take our word for it. The Citroen DS3 has impressed some of the top decision-makers on what is ‘cool’ or not.

The DS3 was the only car to finish on Stuff magazine’s prestigious Cool List, and even finished ahead of the must-have iPad in the final list.

Its impressive looks are topped off with a range of customisable options never before seen on a small car, and the huge improvements to the interior over the C3 are evident throughout.

TopGear said: "DS3 has pulled off that heady mix of ability, excitement and affordability that’s impossible to ignore. It walks so many fine lines so delicately and so comprehensively that it’s hard to find a chink in the armour. The TopGear Car of the Year is a small, thoughtful, affordable, stylish, fun little hatchback. It’s the people’s champion."

High praise indeed, and it is a sentiment repeated by several European Car of the Year judges when the DS3 was included on the final shortlist before finishing in the top five best European cars of 2010.

Citroen raised a few eyebrows when it announced it would be reviving the old DS line of cars for 2010, and there were a number of sceptics about how successful a Mini-rival would be, but the DS3 has outstripped all expectations.

Fun, stylish, economical and with go-kart handling, the DS3 is, as Citroen explains, the ‘must-have model in its class’.

The DS4 will arrive in Perrys showrooms early next year, followed by the DS5 later in the year. This trio of upmarket Citroen models have reinvigorated the brand and introduced it to a new, younger, type of buyer.

The Top Gear award is the latest in a line of honours the DS3 has picked up in its first 12 months, but it is guaranteed to not be the last.

To find out more about the Citroen DS3, read our Citroen DS3 review. Alternatively, take a look at Citroen DS3 prices or book a Citroen DS3 test drive.