Driven: 2020 DS 7 Crossback Is The SUV You Never Knew You Wanted

What on Earth is a DS, proper? That appears to be just about everybody’s response when confronted with this surprisingly trendy compact SUV. However let’s run it again a decade or so and see how the French model got here to be.

It’s the 12 months 2009 and I’m sitting in what I feel was a showroom or some kind of enormous retailer in downtown Paris, together with a handful of different automotive journalists. We’re all there for the worldwide launch of Citroen’s personal premium model, the DS.

I’ll admit to being skeptical, and for good purpose. It’s powerful to launch new premium manufacturers within the automotive trade, and while you do handle to get some traction, it will possibly take a long time earlier than you might have any success globally. Simply ask Lexus…

Not lengthy after that occasion, I acquired to drive the primary ever DS mannequin, which was the DS 3 – truly, Citroen DS3 to be exact.

It wasn’t all that good. It wasn’t sporty, it wasn’t significantly well-made and it seemed quirky. I truly thought this model would by no means get off the bottom to be sincere with you. However then DS moved from being unique to Citroen, to changing into extra unbiased throughout the PSA Group umbrella roughly 5 years in the past. Thus, DS Automobiles was born.

Learn Additionally: DS7 Crossback Gains Front-Wheel-Drive E-TENSE 225 PHEV Variant

Since then, they gave the world the DS Four and 5, in addition to a brand new DS 3. Sadly, all of them had been primarily based on previous-gen PSA Group technology, and once more, they seemed quirky. Now nevertheless, the head of DS Vehicles dawns the moniker DS 7 Crossback, and in contrast to with earlier fashions, its designers targeted on consolation, construct high quality and on-board expertise. I’m right here to let you know that to my literal astonishment, that is an unbelievably good automotive for the cash. However extra on that later.

Is it good trying although?

No matter you need to name it, it’s undoubtedly not quirky or bizarre. It truly appears very “German” from some angles and that’s a extremely good factor, as a result of on this trade, should you can’t beat them, you higher bend over backwards to affix them.

Personally, I discover it moderately good trying, with beautiful headlight tech and taillight graphics. These jewel-like rotating LEDs within the headlights are stunning to have a look at everytime you begin or cease the engine – effectively, the people who find themselves exterior the automotive will get pleasure from them at the very least.

Evaluate it to an Audi Q5, BMW X3 or Mercedes GLC and you would argue for any one in every of them being one of the best trying mannequin of the group. Now, whereas it’s true that the DS 7 is ever so barely smaller than these three German crossovers, it’s nonetheless a lot nearer to them in measurement than it’s to their smaller counterparts, the Q3, X1 and GLA. Right here’s a fast measurement comp between the GLC and the DS7.

Mercedes GLC

– wheelbase 2,873 mm (113.1 in)
– size 4,656 (183.Three in)
– width 1,890 mm (74.Four in)
– peak 1,638 mm (64.5 in)

DS 7 Crossback

– wheelbase 2,738 mm (107.Eight in)
– size 4,570 mm (179.9 in)
– width 1,895 mm (74.6 in)
– peak 1,620 mm (63.Eight in)

So whereas it’s not fairly so long as the Mercedes, it’s truly a bit of wider, giving it loads of presence for this section. Then there’s the trunk quantity at 555 liters (19.6 cu.ft), which is equivalent to what you’d get with a BMW X3, and a bit bigger than within the GLC. Fold the backseat and you find yourself with 1,752 liters (61.9 cu.ft) within the DS 7, which is about 100 liters (3.53 cu.ft) greater than within the BMW or the Mercedes.

Usually we wouldn’t be speaking this a lot about rivals. This isn’t a comparability check. Nevertheless, given the dearth of recognition and international data about not simply this mannequin, however the model as effectively, it’s solely honest to enter as a lot element as potential.

It drives effectively sufficient

The DS 7 isn’t as sharp to drive as one thing like an X3 or a Q5, however then once more it doesn’t must be. All it must do is be snug, protected and secure, which it truly is. It feels very sturdy and straightforward to drive and maneuver round city. You’ll be able to’t even fault it at freeway speeds, particularly with the Stage 2 semi-autonomous programs holding you within the middle of the lane always. It truly drives rather a lot just like the GLC. Not significantly sporty, however very snug and planted.

The engine on our check automotive was a 222 HP (226 PS) 1.6-liter turbocharged gasoline unit mated to PSA’s 8-speed automated gearbox. We sampled this transmission earlier than, when we drove the latest Peugeot 508. Energy is distributed completely to the entrance wheels, as it’s in any DS 7 Crossback mannequin variant apart from the brand new E-TENSE.

So what can we let you know in regards to the powertrain? It was alright, however not the happiest of marriages. Your entire setup can really feel a bit jerky because you typically must rev it rather a lot with a view to entry the engine’s peak torque output optimally. So as an alternative we might suggest the 174 HP (177 PS) HDi diesel unit, which even has an additional 100 Nm (74 lb-ft) of torque.

In any case, the 1.6 petrol engine additionally produces 300 Nm (221 lb-ft) of torque and might get you from zero to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 8.2 seconds, earlier than maxing you out at 234 km/h (145 mph).

DS additionally claims that the 7 Crossback can common l/100 km (39.2 mpg) on the freeway, however that’s extraordinarily beneficiant, as is the official declare of seven.1 l/100 km (33.1 mpg) mixed. Add about 2 l/100 km on common and also you’d get nearer to its real-world efficiency. So it’s extra like 25.Eight mpg on the freeway, give or take.

Absolutely that is simply an overdressed Citroen, proper?

, that’s what I assumed initially, however got here away very shocked. Simply to ball-park it, I’d say that the supplies inside are about 90% pretty much as good as within the X3 and Q5, about the identical as within the Volvo XC60 and truly a bit higher than within the non-facelifted Mercedes GLC.

So sure, it is a correct premium product, with just about all surfaces being soft-touch, aside from some tougher plastics beneath the dashboard – primarily in locations you hardly ever contact and even have a look at. As well as, the particular DS Inspiration Opera Alezan Brown leather-based, a 2,145 euro ($2,400) non-obligatory further, actually made this automotive’s inside really feel costly.

Then there’s the tech, and that is the place the DS 7 Crossback ought to be capable to win nearly anyone over, as a result of in a means, you’re getting X5 ranges of driver help and comfort options for lower than X3 cash.

So, we drove the Grand Stylish specification, which already got here with twin zone local weather management, full LED headlights, panoramic roof, heated entrance seats, backup digicam, leather-based steering wheel, automated wipers, wi-fi charging to your cell phone, therapeutic massage seats, ambient lighting and an excellent deal extra.

The choices listing was much more spectacular with the likes of the DS ConnectedCAM, DS Night time Imaginative and prescient, panoramic roof, HiFi Focal Electra stereo, DS Related Pilot and Driver Consideration Monitoring. All of the Level 2 self-driving tech labored completely on the freeway, making the DS 7 a extremely snug and protected cruiser.

Large bang to your buck

In Romania, this actual configuration prices 42,336 euros ($47,500), with out taxes. Within the UK, which is a bigger and extra well-liked market, you should purchase an entry-level DS 7 Crossback from £32,740 OTR ($40,723), whereas an entry-level BMW X3 would set you again upwards of £41,485 ($51,600).

In Germany, which is Europe’s largest market, pricing for the DS 7 Crossback kicks off from 33,040 euros / $37,090 (taxes included), whereas this flagship Grand Stylish spec prices upwards of 44,790 euros ($50,282), and that’s with no choices. Be at liberty so as to add the 1,400 euro ($1,571) Night time Imaginative and prescient system and its 46,190 euro ($51,854) price ticket will truly fall in need of what you’d spend on an entry-level BMW X3, which is priced from 46,300 euro ($51,977) – and never accessible with Night time Imaginative and prescient. You want an X5 for that.


The thought you can purchase one totally loaded premium compact SUV for the worth of one other model’s entry-level variant simply has to make buying a DS 7 a no brainer.

Certain, some would argue that it’s not as quick or enjoyable to drive as a BMW or an Audi, which even have a way more diversified engine vary. Nevertheless, you don’t purchase a compact SUV for a similar causes you’d a sports activities automotive or perhaps a sports sedan. A majority of these automobiles are alleged to be enjoyable to drive, snug, protected and handsome, and the DS 7 Crossback ticks each single a kind of packing containers.

So whereas it is probably not one of the best automotive in its class, it would simply be the one price having most. Too dangerous it’s not accessible within the U.S., though as soon as the PSA-FCA merger is finalized, who’s to say the DS 7 received’t be crossing the Atlantic?

Pictures: Sergiu Tudose / CarScoops

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