Practicality and Boot Space
The driver and front seat passenger are pretty well catered for in this DS, only spoiled by a lack of stowage space for the detritus of modern life. In the back the news isn’t quite so good, and taller occupants will find the roof rubbing against their scalp and legroom a little tight too.
It will be fine for children, but they’re likely to complain about the small windows. The stylised streaks on the bodywork will ruin their view and make I-Spy spotting almost impossible.
The boot is bigger than most hatchbacks but not huge for this class, especially when the seats are folded. A Kia e-Niro is a more practical choice if you need to carry stuff regularly.
As you might expect from a car which considers itself ‘premium’ there is a decent amount of kit top play with on the cheapest Crossback E-Tense. There’s a 7-inch main display, rear parking sensors, flush-fitting door-handles that pop out of the bodywork. You can add plenty of posh-car options if you want to spend the money, from head-up displays to matrix LED headlights and wireless phone charging. You might struggle to get it all to work though as it’s not the most intuitive and some of the switchgear seems designed to look pretty rather than be easy to use.
Perhaps the most impressive tech though is the DS SMART ACCESS which allows you to grant access to your car via the MyDS App. With it you don’t need keys, and can let up to five people drive the car using just their phones. If you fall out you can just take away their access. The bad news is that it doesn’t work yet, but is expected to be introduced soon.
It might not be the best known brand, but DS has the might and expertise of the massive PSA group behind it, which means they know how to make a safe car. The independent crash testing organisation EuroNCAP slammed a few DS3 Crossbacks into walls and rewarded it with a full five-star rating.
As well as a decent score for occupant protection (96% for those in the front) it did well thanks to having accident prevention safety kit fitted as standard across the range. Gadgets like lane departure warning, automatic braking and blind spot alerts are all fitted. The DS3 also has Active Cruise Control so it can maintain a speed while keeping a safe distance to the car in front and keeping the car in the centre of its lane.