New 2021 DS 4 hatchback on sale now from £25,350

The new DS 4 premium hatchback VW Golf rival features pseudo-SUV styling and the option of a 223bhp 1.6-litre plug-in hybrid powertrain

DS 4 La Premiere

DS has launched the complete DS 4 hatchback line-up in the UK. Until recently, buyers were only able to order the £39,950 La Premiere launch edition version of the new car – but now there’s a full complement of trims on offer, with prices starting from £25,350.

Brace yourselves, though, as the new DS 4 line-up is rather complicated. There’s a choice of three main specifications to choose from, called DS 4, Performance Line and Cross. However, the base-model and Cross variants can also be specified in different equipment lines, called Bastille+, Trocadero and Rivoli.

The cheapest DS 4 Bastille+ commands that headline price and comes fitted as standard with 17-inch alloy wheels, chrome exterior trim and gloss black door mirrors. There’s also LED headlights, rear parking sensors and a 180-degree reversing camera, while inside buyers get cloth upholstery, a seven-inch digital gauge cluster and a 10-inch infotainment system.

Stepping up a rung, the DS 4 Trocadero gets 19-inch alloys, a model-specific chrome radiator grille and some dedicated cloth seats. There’s also some extra tech, with connected navigation and natural voice recognition coming as standard. Prices start from £28,850.

DS’s Rivoli specification bumps the 4’s price-tag up to £35,150, but that increase is mostly because it isn’t offered with the company’s entry-level 128bhp petrol engine. Extras include a unique set of 19-inch alloy wheels, Matrix LED headlights, black leather upholstery and a level 2 semi-autonomous driving mode with adaptive cruise control.

The sporty DS 4 Performance Line features a few cosmetic tweaks to set it apart from the rest of the line-up. The standard car’s chrome trim is swapped for gloss black replacements, while there’s a different set of 19-inch alloy wheels and rear privacy glass.

Other upgrades include black Alcantara upholstery, a perforated leather steering wheel and front and rear parking sensors. Prices for the Performance Line model start from £26,850.

DS also offers a more generously equipped Performance Line+ version of the DS 4 hatch, which adds adaptive cruise control, a head-up display and the improved infotainment system from the DS 4 Trocadero. Prices start from £33,150 but, like the DS 4 Rivoli, that increase is mostly due to the fact that it’s not available with the firm’s entry-level powertrain.

The SUV-inspired DS 4 Cross line-up features a host of rugged styling tweaks, including new front and rear skid plates, black bumpers, model-specific side skirts and gloss black roof bars. This standard specification can also be upgraded with either the firm’s Trocadero or Rivoli option packages.

Cross Trocadero models are priced from £29,450 and come as standard with yet another set of model-specific 19-inch alloy wheels and DS’s Tungsten Diamond cloth upholstery.

Every DS 4 Cross also gets the firm’s extended head-up display system, which DS says is closer to augmented reality than any other system on the market. Navigation instructions are seemingly projected onto the road four metres ahead and 21 inches wide, rather than just onto the vehicle’s windscreen.

The Cross Rivoli is priced from £35,750 (because of the powertrain reasons mentioned above) and gets a black leather interior and its own set of 19-inch alloys. The car’s LED headlights also gain a swivel function which can swing the beam in tandem with the steering wheel up at an angle of up to 33.5 degrees, improving visibility around corners.

DS 4 2021 -2

New 2022 DS 4: engines and drivetrains

The DS 4 is based on the same EMP2 platform as the DS 7 Crossback and Peugeot 3008, which means it inherits a familiar range of powertrains from parent company Stellantis. 

Buyers have a choice of three petrol engines, one diesel engine and a sole plug-in hybrid powertrain. The petrol range opens with a 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbo unit with 128bhp. Above that, there’s a 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbo unit, with either 178bhp or 222bhp. All three engines send drive to the front wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox.

The diesel engine is PSA’s faithful 1.5-litre four-cylinder BlueHDi unit, which produces 128bhp. Like the petrols, it’s fitted with an eight-speed automatic gearbox as standard. Prices start from £30,750 for the DS 4 Trocadero.

The plug-in hybrid option mixes a 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine and an electric motor, for an output of 223bhp and an electric-only range of 31 miles. DS also says the powertrain’s emissions sit as low as 34g/km, which places the car in the UK’s least expensive paid road tax bracket. Prices start from £36,600 in the firm’s cheapest Trocadero trim.

New 2021 DS 4: design and platform

The previous-generation DS 4 was launched back in 2010 as a Volkswagen Golf-rivalling family hatchback, based on the Citroen C4. However, the market has changed in the past decade, so this new model has morphed into a pseudo-SUV in a bid to broaden its appeal.

The DS 4 will face some tough opposition from both traditional premium hatchbacks such as the Mercedes A-Class, and compact crossovers such as the newly reinvented Citroen C4 and the Lexus UX.

The DS 4 measures 4,440mm long, 1,830mm wide and 1,470mm tall. Its front end is inspired by DS’s flagship model, the DS 7 Crossback, sharing the same slim LED headlamps and daytime running lights (98 in total) which cascade down the bumper and blend into the lower air intake.

The Cross gets a rugged-looking SUV redesign with black inserts fitted to the side skirts and the lower section of the front bumper. Buyers will also get roof rails, unique alloy wheels and black window frames, along with an optional advanced traction control system with specific settings for snow, mud and sand.

Performance Line models won’t gain any mechanical upgrades. It does get a sporty visual makeover, though, with black window surrounds, a different front grille and model-specific rear light clusters.

The DS 4’s cabin has gone fully digital, with only a few physical buttons remaining. Three displays dominate the interior – there’s a digital gauge cluster ahead of the driver and a 10-inch screen on the dashboard, which is operated from a new five-inch touch panel on the centro console. The company refers to the set-up as the DS Smart Touch.

DS is also keen to point out the lack of visible vents – the main air outlet has been integrated behind the strip of physical buttons below the main central display. UK trims and specs are yet to be confirmed, but leather, Alcantara, forged carbon and wood are all options for the interior finish.

by: Luke WilkinsonAuto Express

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