Citroen DS Line: together at last

The Frankfurt Motor Show is one of the largest motor shows in the world and a perfect opportunity to for car makers to showcase their future plans.

This year, the show is bigger than ever, with Ford, Land Rover, Peugeot and Fiat all confirming exciting new cars for their show stands.

Meanwhile Citroen’s stand will not feature an all-new model, but it be the setting for the culmination of several years hard work for the brand in launching its DS Line.

A lot has been said about the Citroen DS3, Citroen DS4 and Citroen DS5 – but Frankfurt will be the first time all three will appear together as fully functioning road cars.

The DS Line is an interesting one for Citroen. Designed to create a range of more upmarket, premium cars, it has been an unrivalled success. The cars look great, are of a sufficiently high quality and above all else, have helped to increase perceptions of the brand as a young, exciting one.

To celebrate the success of the DS Line, and the first appearance of the three cars together, here’s a quick rundown of just what it is and the differences between the individual cars.

What is the Citroen DS Line?

The Citroen DS Line is a name taken from historical Citroen cars including the popular executive car from the 1950s to the 1970s, the Citroen DS.

The name was taken by Citroen and placed on three new cars, loosely based on Citroen’s current range of cars but with styling twists.

The result is three more premium, more attractive and more desirable cars in the UK.

Citroen DS3

The first of the Citroen DS Line was the DS3, launched back in 2010. The Citroen DS3 is a supermini which goes up against the likes of the Ford Fiesta. However, because of its superb stying, it is more likely to attract buyers from Mini.

The Citroen DS3 is also the fun car in the line-up, offering hundreds of colour options (the roof can even feature graphics) and a quirky but colourful interior.

Such was the success of the nippy DS3 it was the only car named on Stuff Magazine’s Cool List (ahead of the iPad!) and was named Top Gear Car of the Year 2011.

It is also the most frugal in the range, with Airdream+ versions offering sub-100g/km of CO2 emissions.

However, there is also a hot hatch version, the superb 200bhp Citroen DS3 Racing, complete with sporty makeover to the styling and plenty of performance. The Racing even inspired the DS3 World Rally Car for 2011.

You can read our Citroen DS3 review here

Citroen DS4

The Citroen DS4 looks completely different to any Citroen gone before. Based on the Citroen High Rider concept, the hatchback is roughly a Ford Focus rival but features a uniquely raised ride height and certain aspects of SUV styling.

Launched in 2011, the car could even be described as a crossover because of its unique styling. There’s no denying the car looks great, but the design does mean rear passenger windows do not actually open.

Packed with technology, the car also features premium touches such as leather door handles and aluminium pedals.

The Citroen DS4 seems entirely separate from the DS3, but both offer something completely unique in an ever more uninspired market.

You can read our Citroen DS4 review here

Citroen DS5

The latest car to join the DS Line is also the only one to feature anything other than a petrol or diesel engine under the bonnet.

As the number suggests, the Citroen DS5 is larger than the DS4 and falls into the large family car category alongside the Ford Mondeo. Halfway between an estate and a hatchback, the car is arguably the best-looking in the DS5, matching classy looks with a premium-feeling interior.

It also comes with a diesel-electric hybrid powertrain. Or in plain English, a 2.0-litre diesel engine which drives the front wheels and an electric motor to drive the rear wheels.

This means the car is four-wheel drive and, due to the battery charging the motor, lower fuel consumption than many of its contemporaries.