DS4 revealed as ‘avante-garde’ premium hatchback rival to Audi, BMW and Mercedes

French car maker DS has revealed details of its new DS4 model as it looks to make an impact in the premium hatchback segment.

Positioned to go up against the Audi A3, BMW 1 Series and Mercedes-Benz A-Class, the DS4 is the fourth model from the brand and is due to go on sale in the UK in November.

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As with other DS models striking styling is central to the DS4’s character with a cab-rearward design, swooping coupe-like roof and bold front end dominated by a 3D-grille, two lines of LED running lights and standard fit adaptive matrix LED headlights. Wheels up to 20 inches will be available and a more “dynamic” DS4 Performance Line will sit at the top of the range with black exterior trim, wheels and an exclusive paint finish.

As well as the Performance Line and standard DS4 model, a DS4 Cross variant is designed to muscle in on crossover territory with dark lower body cladding, gloss black finish to trim parts and roof rails and a single-tone paint finish in place of other models’s two-tone. It also gets an exclusive traction control system with sand, snow and mud modes.

The DS4 Cross has a more rugged outward appearance (Photo: DS)The DS4 Cross has a more rugged outward appearance (Photo: DS)
The DS4 Cross has a more rugged outward appearance (Photo: DS)

The DS4 is built on the EMP2 platform which underpins several other models from DS, Peugeot, Citroen and Vauxhall, and features petrol, diesel and plug-in hybrid drivetrains.

PureTech petrol engines in 128, 178 and 222bhp are supplemented with a 128bhp four-cylinder diesel. All versions come with an eight-speed automatic gearbox as standard.

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The E-Tense PHEV uses a 178bhp turbo petrol engine and 109bhp electric motor to offer a combined output of 222bhp, delivered via an eight-speed automatic transmission. All-electric range from its 12.4kWh battery is quoted at 30 miles.

No electric model has been confirmed but the platform is capable of supporting a pure EV drivetrain.

The DS4’s interior aims to display DS’s premium segment credentials with high-quality materials including Alcantara, forged carbon, wood and Nappa leather, and new upholstery techniques including hidden stitching. DS says the cabin’s shape is inspired by a shell to be a curving single “comfort zone”, with high-density foam seats, ambient lighting, hidden air vents and a 14-speaker Focal sound system.

A 10-inch screen sits at the heart of the internet-connected infotainment system and offers a personalisable interface inspired by smartphones. It is controlled by a combination of voice, gestures and a five-inch “Iris” touchscreen in the centre console.

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Standard technology on the DS4 includes active scan suspension which uses a camera to monitor the road ahead, anticipate changes in surface and alter the adaptive damping to cope. Night vision is also featured, using an infrared camera to detect hazards outwith the reach of the headlights and project a warning on the dashboard and head-up display.

Level two assisted driving brings adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assistance, semi-automatic overtaking, speed adjustment for corners, anticipated speed recommendations from signposts and blind spot warning for hazards up to 75 metres away.

No prices have been announced but DS says it will be “competitive” with its key rivals, all of which start at around £23,000 to £24,000.

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