The race to capture a piece of the subcompact model market pie has attracted French automaker, Citroën, to release its new DS4. The letters “DS” – short for “Deesse”, which is Goddess in French – befits its elegant profile. The new coupe-like model has all the practicality of a four-door sedan, a sports utility ride height with slightly compressed cabin space and an aesthetic appeal of a five-door hatchback.

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Like its predecessor, the DS4 prides itself on inheriting creative technologies with a flair for French luxury. The 1.6-litre direct fuel injection four-cylinder engine was developed in collaboration with BMW Group which offers the best compromise between performance and fuel efficiency. Boosted by a twin-scroll turbocharger, the award winning hatchback (2011 Auto Bild Design Award), is packed with 155hp at 5,800 rpm with 240 Nm torque available from 1,400 rpm to 4,000 rpm, granting a top speed of 214 km/h and accelerating from 0-100 km/h in 9.9 seconds.

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Despite its “sports utility” stature at 1.53 metres and 1.81 metres wide, the DS4 did not have to sacrifice size for road handling.  Fastened to a set of MacPherson type suspension at the front and a flexible transverse beam at the rear with anti-roll bars, shock absorbers and spring carefully calibrated to meet different road conditions, the dynamic hatchback performs amicably in both ride comfort and road handling.

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Inside the cabin space, a host of luxurious features including massaging front seats, ‘spatialisation’ capable sounds system, and intelligent climate control functions is juxtaposed against a lavish well-crafted interior, including ‘Habana’ leather seats, panoramic windscreen, adjustable colour instrument cluster and adjustable lumber support. Voted as “The Most Beautiful Car of the Year” at the 26th International Automobile Festival, the Citroën DS4 is gaining traction in the market for small luxury cars.

Citroen has put together a mini-series featuring interviews with its design team on the conceptualisation of the new DS range. Discover how Thierry Metroz, Design Director for Citroen, and his team helped to re-create the DS line for the new century.

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