I will try my best to provide detailed info on various cars and what is like to live with them, I have already produced a few for Jaguar-car-forums, I will do my best to be unbiased, but it will be hard for some cars. I will re-produce press releases and copy from other motoring news.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

TMW - The flagship DS range of cars from the PSA Group is topped off with the DS5, a great car, so why does it not sell better ?

The DS automobiles brand, which has split from Citroen, has a trio of cars for sale in the UK, and the top of that range is the DS5, within that are three distinct models, the Elegance, performance line and Prestige and a hybrid 4x4 on top of that, the model we have today is the DS5 Prestige BlueHDi 150 S&S, six speed manual, in a stunning Whisper Purple, unfortunately the colour looks black unless you look at it with the sun on, or bright light, otherwise you really struggle to tell what colour this is.

On first glance when the car arrives, you are stuck by how large it is, and how stylised it is, with that silver slash from the front to the door and the kink that goes a few inches up the side, the split rear window on the tailgate, an old trait used before on another Citroen.

When you open the door you get a hint of aircraft, with the central stack in the roof with various buttons which activate the HUD, and the three, yes three, covers for the three stage glass roof. Once you get the car into the position that you are happy to be in, by moving the electric seats and the steering wheel, you slide into the seat, which actually is sat quite high, more SUV height, that luxury saloon, and that’s not an issue.

With the roof stack, and the central stack you feel very cosseted and quite claustrophobic, but in this car that’s not a problem, as there are so many other things for you to look at, like the really good sat-nav system, decent infotainment set up, the various settings for MPG, speed and eco mode, which is just a timer for when the car is at a standstill.

Once you start the car, by pressing the button below the art deco style clock, the car fires up to a roar, it is rather noisy, more so than I expected, but once inside, and driving along the noise goes from intrusive to becoming part of the excitement of driving this piece of French Flair.

The car in question is one that tries to compete with the likes of the Mondeo and Passat, to the C-Class, 3-Series and A4, does it work, well, yes and no, in terms of quality, build, equipment levels and price, yes, definitely, where it fails to compete is pure and simple, they have the market well and truly sewn up between them, so getting a car in there, and be successful, along with decent pricing, residuals and cost of ownership, this car is left wanting, and really that is a huge shame.

People do not look at this car, instead they immediately go for the German brands, and as I have said enough times before, these German brands are NOT as good as they pretend to be, we won’t even mention the VW diesel scandal, the Mondeo, took so long to come to the UK, that it lost its way, and became an instant overnight, out of date car, which is where the DS 5 should have jumped on the band wagon, and pushed the car for all its might, and tried to take some market share for the car.

The DS 5 is a brilliant car, there is no other word to describe it, you feel like you are flying a jet fighter, the car shifts, very quickly, and it has equally good brakes to bring the car to a safe and competent stop, without feeling like you are not in control.

This model comes with a host of added equipment:- 
  • Cruise Control
  • TPMS
  • Front and rear parking sensors
  • Sat Nav
  • Trip Computer
  • Reversing camera
  • Hill start assist
  • ABS
  • EBD
  • EBA
  • ESC
  • Auto handbrake
  • eTouch emergency assistance system
  • Keyless entry and start
  • Auto activation of hazard lights
  • Front armrest storage
  • Leather pack
  • 3-Part glass sunroof with sunblind’s
  • Front and rear electric windows
  • DAB Digital radio
  • USB Socket
  • Bluetooth
  • Mirror Link
  • LED Daytime running lights
  • DS LED Vision Xenon direction headlights
  • Auto lights
  • 18" Alloys 
Just a very small amount of the standard kit on the car, so you can see that it is very well specified, and can fight it with the best of them and come out on top.

Our car here today came with very few additions but they were:-
  • Metallic Paint £600
  • Metal Effect Interior Trim Finishers
  • Colour Heads Up Display (HUD)
  • Electric Comfort Pack £500
  • Grey Leather £0.00 
The car is also quite friendly to the environment, considering its size and weight, the model here runs 113g/km Co2, which is not bad, however the range does start at 103g/km Co2, it can cruise quite happily at over 100mph, and it tops out at 127mph, whilst taking 10.6 seconds to get from standstill to 62mph, quite slow compared to other cars in the class, but then who actually does drive it like the road testers do?

Fuel consumption is claimed from DS Automobiles as really very good 
  • Urban Cycle 4.4litre/100km    64.2mpg
  • Extra Urban  3.8litre/100km    74.3mpg
  • Combined     4.1litre/100km    68.9mpg 
These are claimed figures, and I didn't manage to get to the high numbers, but according to the trip computer I did manage to get high 40's on a run to Malvern, where we had a bespoke tour of Morgan Motor Company, (post to come shortly) and this included motorway, city and country road driving, and getting stuck in a large traffic jam in Malvern.

Personally I would have preferred to have driven an automatic, as most people who would buy this type of car would opt for the EAT6, which is a great auto box once you get used to the way it needs to be driven, one of our own cars is the C4 Cactus with the EAT6, and for the first few days it was like a kangaroo driving, but now you can drive the car very smoothly, and that’s what would be in this car as standard.

Driving the car and you feel like you are in something very well made, ergonomically the car is great, with everything easily to hand, you never have to reach about for anything, I did have issues with the roof toggle switches when I first got the car, but once I got used to where there were and which switch did what, there was no problems.

Pulling away from junctions is not an issue for the car as there are bags of torque to get you moving, and the well to heavily weighted power steering never diverts from where you point it, no torque steer here.

Now the negative points, and there is one that’s just too big to ignore, and that’s depreciation, this car drops like a stone, but then the big Citroen models generally have, which makes the DS5 a brilliant buy second hand, which then begs the question, would I have one, too right I would, the car has all the toys, the build quality and looks that some of the supposed quality brands would dearly love to have, and fail to achieve.

The car runs, stops and performs faultlessly, has loads of boot space, my only issues are the dark interior for the rear seat passengers, but that can be rectified by the triple glass roof, and the double glass tailgate, this can be an issue if you slam it shut with something in the way, and crash that’s the tailgate window broken, but being careful should alleviate that.