DS 3 Crossback

The DS 3 Crossback is a compact SUV that’s very big on style. It stands out in any crowd and is unique in its design with a diamond theme throughout. Customers can choose from a number of well equipped trim levels and there are diesel or petrol powertrains at launch.

The good

Unique styling and outstanding comfort levels

The bad

Controls can be overcomplicated in their layout

Tech Specs

Price from
Combined Fuel up to
0-62 from
8.2 seconds
max speed up to
co2 from

Test Drive

DS 3 Crossback PureTech 130 automatic Performance Line

The song declares that Diamonds are Forever and if that’s true then the DS 3 Crossback could be around for quite a long time.

That’s because wherever you look on the all-new compact SUV, you are greeted by diamond shapes and glittering surfaces giving the car all the sparkle you expect from a premium marque.

The DS marque parted company with Citroen back in 2014 to form its very own brand. But one thing is clear – whatever emblem is or was on the front of the DS 3 – there’s no denying its all-round appeal complete with distinctive shark fin and floating roof design.

And now that sporty hatchback has a larger sibling in the shape of the DS 3 Crossback, an SUV that’s bubbling over with technology that can also put in a very decent shift when it comes to performance.

The DS 3 Crossback is impossible to ignore due to its eye-catching, dynamic styling with some very premium features along the way. The door handles, for example, sit flush to the car’s body and pop out as you approach the car. Drive away, look in the side mirror and they’ll be flush to the bodywork again. Then there’s the jewel-like headlights, smart athletic lines and that shark fin and floating roof side view that’s so distinctive. The DS monogram on the tailgate, a bi-tone colour roof, along with 18-inch Monza black onyx diamond cut alloys complete the look.

Move inside and it’s uniquely styled and unlike any other model out there. There are touch-sensitive diamond-shaped tiles on the dashboard that offer shortcuts to functions such as the music, navigation, hazard lights, climate control, car settings and phone contacts. Additional buttons control the audio volume, air circulation and front and rear screen de-misters – these are also diamond shaped. There is a push button starter button with red outline (diamond again) and the window controls are rather unusually positioned either side of the gear lever, along with the parking brake – you’ll never guess the shape!

On-board techno teats are plentiful and include the likes of smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, air conditioning, Bluetooth connectivity and our test car also featured an optional Advanced Technology Pack, costing £850, that added connected 3D navigation, a 10-inch HD touchscreen, voice recognition and wireless charging.

Our front-wheel-drive car, in sporty Performance Line trim, was priced at £25,955 although a number of optional packs saw the final cost reach £29,555. It was powered by a three-cylinder, 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox. It could sprint from 0-62mph in 9.2 seconds and maxed out at 124mph. According to the latest WLTP figures, the DS 3 Crossback can deliver combined fuel economy of 45.6mpg with carbon emissions of 111g/km.

The comfort levels are high and although all the snazzy buttons and switches can be a tad mind-boggling initially, you soon get to grips with the quick key access to various functions.

On the performance front, the driver can switch between drive modes called Eco, Normal and Sport that alter the manner in which the car behaves, and for added fun there are steering wheel-mounted paddles to control the gear shifts manually.

Although the DS 3 Crossback may not be quite so fast out the starting blocks as some of its rivals, it handles beautifully with the emphasis on comfort rather than dynamics. That said; it’s no slouch and can be pushed hard into corners with a degree of confidence. The road-holding is assured and the car feels well planted at all times.

The engine note does become a little raspy at higher speeds or when firing through the gears manually which kind of adds to its appeal, but generally the car feels well protected from any road surface or outside noise intrusion.

Another plus factor of note is the highly effective suspension set-up that does a very thorough job of smoothing out all but the most severe bumps and dips along the way.

It’s a car that can effortlessly clock up high motorway mileage and then in busy, congested traffic, the DS 3 Crossback is beautifully agile and easy to manoeuvre. The excellent all-round visibility is a bonus when driving through city centres with cars, cyclists and pedestrians darting out from all angles.

This is certainly a vehicle that would suit any growing family as there is ample space for four adults to travel in comfort, provided the front seats are not pushed back too far. And storage options are good too with a boot capacity that ranges from 350 litres to 1,050 litres with the 60:40 split-folding rear seats dropped flat. Additional storage options include a glovebox, deep door bins, a compartment next to the driver’s right knee and cup holders.

All in all, when you also take into account the generous level of top quality safety equipment, the DS 3 Crossback is quite the all-rounder. In fact it would be fair to say it’s a pure gem!

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