Ds 4 Hatchback
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Review Of The Citroen DS4 Hatchback
JTNDY2VudGVyJTNFJTNDaWZyYW1lJTIwd2lkdGglM0QlMjI1NjAlMjIlMjBoZWlnaHQlM0QlMjIzMTUlMjIlMjBzcmMlM0QlMjJodHRwcyUzQSUyRiUyRnd3dy55b3V0dWJlLmNvbSUyRmVtYmVkJTJGTWtiNFhleGd0cFUlMjIlMjBmcmFtZWJvcmRlciUzRCUyMjAlMjIlMjBhbGxvdyUzRCUyMmF1dG9wbGF5JTNCJTIwZW5jcnlwdGVkLW1lZGlhJTIyJTIwYWxsb3dmdWxsc2NyZWVuJTNFJTNDJTJGaWZyYW1lJTNFJTNDJTJGY2VudGVyJTNFThe new Citroen DS4 Hatchback is an ideal car for young families who want a premium-looking, top-quality car – but who can’t afford premium prices. Its interior is easy on the eye and comfortable and comes well-stocked with all kinds of useful standard kit. And despite being a hatchback, it looks more like the most affordable family coupe you’ll buy this year.
Citroen is in the form of their life at the moment, and the DS4 is further evidence of this. It stands out in the showroom, and its levels of luxury aren’t what you’d normally associate with the quirky French brand – they’re more what you’d associate with BMW.
OSV takes a closer look to see if it’s all style and no substance in our 2017 Citroen DS4 Hatchback review.
On The Road
The DS4 looks very different from the standard C4, but once you’re up and running you’ll soon recognise its origins. Because whilst Citroen have worked hard to improve this car’s classy image, it still shares its underpinnings with its sibling.
However, there have been a few modifications. For one thing, the DS4 gets raised, stiffer suspension, while its power-steering system is different. There is also less body lean as you approach bends with enthusiasm, and the car, in general, has more agility.[vc_single_image image=”54495″ img_size=”article-image”]Its steering suffers from the same problem as the C4 – it doesn’t have much feel. As such, we’re not exactly sure what kind of driving dynamics Citroen were aiming for here – and we’re not convinced that Citroen had it fully sussed either. It’s not comfortable enough to be a crossover, nor is it fun enough to rival the Ford Focus. I
And while there is the option of an automatic gearbox, we recommend sticking with the manual, as it’s cheaper and good enough.
In terms of its engines, the diesels are your best bet if you want to keep costs down. The Blue HDi 150 model can do 0-62 in just under 9.0 seconds, and has enough power in its tank to make motorway overtaking look easy. It’s more expensive than the BlueHDi 120, but makes more sense if you’re to be spending a lot of time on lengthy journeys. Both engines are, moreover, free to tax.
With the creaking 1.6-litre petrol engine finally out of the way, a new 1.2-litre PureTech 130 opens the petrol engine in fine fettle. It has plenty of power and urgency from low rev range, and feels willing and keen all the time. It’s also remarkably refinement and further proof of how sophisticated modern-day petrol engines are.
However, a 0-62 time of 9.9 seconds might be too slow for some. If so, there’s the option of a 1.6-litre THP 165, or a THP 210, which produces 197bhp, and which can get you from a standstill to 62mph in 8.4 seconds.
Citroen DS4 Hatchback Interior, Design & Build
[vc_single_image image=”54496″ img_size=”article-image”]The standard C4 offers a decent view of the road ahead, but the DS4 can offer a better one, thanks to its raised suspension. Add in the panoramic windscreen fitted above your heads, an interior feels very accommodating.
At times, it even feels luxurious. Because while the dashboard is shared with the C4, it’s got some nicer touches, such as the LED lights that run along the base of your windscreen, as well as instruments that light up in different colours. There is a variety of sophisticated trim finishes on offer too.
We do have some criticisms with the cabin. A massive rear screen pillar means rear visibility is poor, while engine noise is intrusive. The stereo controls are also a bit too fiddly, while the steering wheel comes with one button too many and could have been much simpler.
Equipment & Safety Of The Citroen DS4 Hatchback
Standard equipment is good across the range, with even the entry-level models getting 17” alloys, a leather-trimmed steering wheel, LED daytime running lights, electric front windows and cruise control. The Prestige model adds a brushed aluminium trim for extra luxury, plus sports seats, keyless entry and 18” alloys.
If you can afford it, the Performance model comes with a bit more spice, and has black alloys, a black roof and customised paint options.
Euro NCAP have crash-tested the car and awarded it 5/5 for safety. It scored particularly well for safety assistance technology and adult occupant protection, while its standard safety kit includes electronic stability control, 6 airbags, and ISOFIX child-seat mounts.[vc_single_image image=”54216″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”]
Costs Of The Citroen DS4 Hatchback
Prices for the new car start out from £20,500 and rise to £27,500. For more information on our leasing deals, you can check out our page here.
In terms of its running costs, the diesel engines are cheap enough to run – but some rivals are even cheaper. However, average returns of 74.3mpg from the BlueHDi 120 are hard to argue with. Moreover, this engine is also exempt from road tax. As is the BlueHDi 150 diesel, which returns fuel economy of 72.4mpg.
And despite offering significantly more power, the automatic BlueHDi 180 is good for returns of 64.2mpg. Road tax is £30 per year.
Pros and Cons Of The Citroen DS4 Hatchback
It’s a hatchback, but looks more like an effortlessly stylish coupe.
Citroen has removed their badge, which further strengthens its premium feel. Unless you knew, you’d have no idea this was a Citroen.
Plenty of Standard Kit
And to even further enhance its premium feel, Citroen have stocked it with a generous amount of standard kit. You get the likes of LED daytime running lights, cruise control, 17” alloys and a leather-trimmed steering wheel.Bit Cramped In The Rear
Practicality is this cars biggest issue, and things are tight in the back.
Not Much Fun
Its second biggest issue is that, despite looking like it would house plenty of driving dynamics, it doesn’t.
Citroen DS4 Hatchback vs Kia Cee’d vs Ford Focus ST Line
Let’s see how the car fares against its rivals in the comparison section of our Citroen DS4 Hatchback review.
Citroen DS4 Hatchback vs Kia Cee’d
Ten years ago, Kia Hatchback’s probably weren’t on your shortlist. In 2017, the Kia Cee’d should be in the top three.
Why? Many reasons, starting with how it drives. It’s refined and composed, and nip through busy streets with ease, thanks to good visibility and light controls. It’s not as entertaining as some rivals, but it’s worth remembering how far Kia have come in just ten years.
Refinement is an especial area of improvement. Take the Kia Cee’d Hatchback out on the motorway and you’ll be hearing a whisper of exterior noise except the faintest of hums from the engines. And in terms of handling, the Cee’d is as sure-footed as cars come.[vc_single_image image=”54217″ img_size=”article-image”]However, to keep the level of expectations that we’ve just built up, you’d need to avoid the base-level 1.4-litre 98bhp petrol engine. Sure, it’s smooth and eager, but ultimately it can’t cope with this car’s weight.
If you must go for a petrol engine, take a look at the quicker 1.6-litre 133bhp unit that can do 0-62 in less than 10.0 seconds or the turbocharged 1.0-litre three-pot unit that’s slower than the 1.6, but which comes in two sizes (99 and 118), and suits the character of the car well.
The diesels will prove to be the most popular, though. Out of the two, the 1.6-litre makes the most sense. Whereas the 1.4 CRDi struggles with overtaking, the 1.6 is nice and responsive, and can do 0-62 in 10.2 seconds.
Moreover, the 1.6-litre diesel is cheaper to run. It’s free to tax and can return fuel economy highs of 78.5mpg. Contrast this with the 1.4, which is good for 67.3mpg, and the 1.0-litre 3-cylinder petrol, which is good for 57.6mpg.
Moving over to the exterior and interior, both give the car an upmarket feel. The design is smart and slick, the build quality is excellent, and the robust materials suggest that this is a car that will last.
The dashboard is simple and clean-looking, and comes with a driver-focused wraparound design. The switchgear is chunky, a trip computer is standard across the range, while Kia has spared no expenses on soft-touch plastics. It’s all really pleasing stuff.
And you’ll keep on smiling when you find out how usable the Kia Cee’d Hatchback is. The bot measures 380-litres and can be extended to 1,318-litres by folding down the rear seats, while storage spaces included an air conditioned glove box and massive door bins.
Citroen – £20,500 – £27,500
Kia – £15,300 – £25,000
Citroen DS4 Hatchback vs Ford Focus ST Line
[vc_single_image image=”54218″ img_size=”article-image”]The new Ford Focus ST Line is the raunchier version of the standard Ford Focus Hatchback. Despite being more expensive than its more sensible sibling, it still offers plenty of value for money.
Ford’s are rarely exciting these days. They’re often among the most entertaining cars to drive in their respective classes, but they hardly give you chills. The Ford Focus ST Line Hatchback is capable of giving you chills, however. It mixes the raw, untamed power of its engines with responsive and accurate handling for a thrilling driving experience.But while we could wax lyrical about this car’s handling prowess all day long, let’s move swiftly onto the engines. A turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol unit is the sole petrol choice. It delivers up to 247bhp, and can thrust you from a standstill to 62mph in 6.5 seconds.
It’s a powerful engine that soon settles down once you’re up and running, but it’s not always so easy to exploit the power, thanks to the turbocharger. For extra cash, you can ask Ford to tweak performance so that power goes up to 272bhp, and the 0-62 time goes up to 5.7 seconds.
There is also a diesel engine to choose from, a 2.0-litre TDCi unit. Is it out of place with this car? Not quite. It’s got enough power in its tank to get you from a rest to 62mph in 8.1 seconds, and like the petrol engine, it emits a raspy, sporty growl that could get those hairs standing up on the back of your neck.
The diesel engine also helps to keep running costs respectable, and can return an impressive 67mpg while costing just £20 a year to tax. The petrol engine is nowhere near as thirsty as it once was, but returns of 41.5mpg and an annual yearly tax bill of £180 are unlikely to appeal to cash-conscious buyers.
Yet despite so much whirlwind performance on offer, the Ford Focus ST Hatchback is a comfortable car. The suspension never feels too harsh, while engine noise is nicely subdued when you want to just chill on winding roads.
Inside, the dashboard isn’t as classy as you might expect, and it feels a bit cluttered. Plastic quality also doesn’t reach high standards, while the materials are probably about right for this price range.
In terms of practicality, the car is hit and miss. The boot measures 316-litres when all the seats are up, and comes with a flat floor and wide opening for the tailgate. However, interior space is worse than last time, despite the dimensions being stretched. The glove box is reasonably sized, but the door bins should be bigger.
Overall, it’s a sportier alternative to the DS4 but less usable.
Ford – £25,000 – £28,700
Verdict Of Our 2017 Citroen DS4 Hatchback Review
OSV have been championing this car for a while and for good reason. It’s effortlessly entertaining to drive, somehow defying all that colossal weight. We can only believe that this is the handiwork of an alchemist.
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