Eight years ago, Citroën has spun off the DS brand and introduced the first model of the new sub brand at the time with the 3 DS. While the vehicles initially as Citroën DS were marketed, the chevrons of the models has disappeared from the beginning of 2015 and they were henceforth only still as their descent from Citroën models could thus DS but are still not completely hidden. Now DS wants to cutting himself completely: stand-alone models and an independent dealer network DS sets out to conquer the premium customers.
The first vehicle of this brand important step DS 7 is the SUV cross back. It has its world premiere before journalists in Paris on 28 February 2017 and is shown to the public for the first time at the Geneva Motor Show 2017 (March 9-19). We could make us advance a picture of the new car at the French plant of the DS parent company PSA Sochaux.
The team of DS wants to connect automobiles under Director General Yves Bonnefont craftsmanship with innovative technologies to represent French expertise in this way. This means when the DS 7 cross back a high elaborate production, to ensure a rigid and thus smooth vehicle, the use of high-quality materials for five different, very high quality equipment and last but not least the use of latest technology, you can pack in such a car.
The first impression when we are faced with the car in an empty production hall: Well done! DS has on 4.57 metres in length (for comparison: the rival Audi Q5 is 4.66 meters) put a fancy SUV on the wheels. The vertical front fascia with the 'DS wings' effectively uses a hexagonal grille with diamond effect in scene. The new LED lamps, which consist of four modules, immediately fall into the eye. The lateral line is almost like from a Coupé and the rear is fitted with a special lighting, because the three dimensions designed LED rear lights look like dandruff. Indicators reinforce the premium character with light. Brands can not better such as Jaguar and Infiniti.
Shine the front opening of the car with the remote key set like gemstones LED headlamps in purple-red and revolve then eye-catching around 180 degrees to perfectly illuminate the road from now on while riding in one of five modes: by "Parking" "City" and "Country road" and "Motorway" down to "high beam", where the beam width and width is strongest.
Already the outer appearance of the DS 7 cross back is a stunner, so the design of the Interior sets it again one, both the shape and the selected materials can see right off the bat. The lines are named after "Bastille", "Rivoli", "Faubourg" and "Opéra" as a tribute to the city of Paris. In addition the sporty "performance line". Nappa leather, real wood, Alcantara and grainy leather used as materials, which dashboard, door panels, consoles and seats are provided.
The vehicle dimensions are 4.57 meters in length, 1.62 meters in height and 1, 89 meters in width. The trunk holds 628 litres. The sense of space in the DS is 7 cross back front rear so generous that one seems to sit in a larger vehicle. This talk also of the long wheelbase and short front and rear body overhangs. Also the seating comfort is high: so were selected foams with high density and relatively wide seats designed. The front seats are heated and equipped with a massage and ventilation function. In addition, also the rear seats are electrically adjustable.
One may find it maybe cheesy, the other beautifully: together with the French watchmaker of BRM Chronographes which was designed B.R.M. R180 exclusive watch. They perched up on the dashboard and turns the engine start itself to peel like from a box. We like it!
Also the two 12-inch screens are inside, the one in the Middle, the other behind the steering wheel. The Central screen controls the navigation, the connectivity and the so-called mirror-screen function. The second, customizable screen takes over the function of a digital instrument of cluster. Here also the information of the optional night vision system DS night appear vision: an infrared camera front in the grille detects pedestrians and animals up to a distance of 100 meters ahead of the vehicle. The driver sees the environment ahead of the vehicle in the instrument of cluster display, people and animals are color highlighted by Red markers. Such a system is offered automobiles for the first time according to DS in the C-segment.
This cross back embeds in the DS 7 almost all current security systems DS: so there's an Adaptive Cruise Control with stop function, which works up to a speed of 180 km/h. An active lane Assistant has a progressive Countersteering, to keep the vehicle in its lane. A park pilot detects suitable spaces in a drive-by and automatically controls the car in the gap the driver must not give gas or draw. The system "DS driver attention monitoring" monitors the driver with an infrared camera, as well as driving and behavioral patterns, and it indicates a possible fatigue.
Finally a high quality audio system with French Hi-Fi specialist focal DS, the developed sources a room-filling sound from fourteen speakers. In the acoustic-Studio of the PSA plant in Sochaux, we could test its quality already. And even though it was still prototypes at an early development stage, the result was quite convincing.
Finally, we could take the quality control in the production in judicial inspection. To get a possible rigid body, this is made for the first time in PSA in a combination laser welding and gluing. That will later lead to a correspondingly high running smoothness. And the attachments, as the outer skin of the body supplied by suppliers are checked on a specially-made, 12-ton body bench with laser technology on fitting accuracy. The smallest deviations, the parts will be rejected to ensure an optimal body structure with small gaps. Here, by the way, the large, drawn wide tailgate, which is made of plastic for weight reasons is particularly problematic.
The DS 7 cross back end of 2017 and early 2018 launches three petrol and two diesel engines in the market. The three-cylinder PureTech 130 with six speed manual transmission is started. To 180 and the THP 225 come as gasoline of the THP, both combined with a new eight-speed automatic transmission. There's the BlueHDi 130 with six speed manual transmission or the eight-speed automatic transmission and the BlueHDi 180 with eight-speed automatic transmission for the diesel engines.
Early 2019 the engine range is extended to an all-wheel drive hybrid model, whose total capacity is 300 HP. The plug-in hybrid powertrain consists from a gasoline internal combustion engine with 200 HP and two electric drives with respectively 80 kW fitted front and rear. To get an eight-speed automatic transmission that cross on the front between internal combustion engine and electric motor is built and a compact lithium-ion battery with a capacity of 12 to 13 kWh and an output of 90 kW, which is installed in the floor of the vehicle, as well as an electrified rear axle. Pure electric car can go up to 60 kilometers.
An active suspension, which scans the road ahead with a camera, should recognize a continuous damping control road bumps and anticipate them. Here, the camera mounted behind the windshield is connected electronically with the front and the rear axle. Together with four inclinometers and three accelerometers, she analyzed the road condition and the reactions of the vehicle (including speed, steering angle and brake). The data is transmitted in real time on a computer, which independently controls each wheel. He continuously adapts the suspension hardness according to the information provided. Thus DS wants to build on the great times of its vehicles with Citroën.
We think that DS automobiles with the DS 7 is cross back on a very good path. By the year 2022, six newly developed vehicles to complement the range. These include a smaller crossover (comparable to the Audi Q2), an even larger SUV and the occasional limousine. Soon the number of pure DS sales houses should be raised also, to provide a Premiumerlebnis not only when driving, but also in the sale. The young brand, we keep our fingers crossed! (ph)