Adding fizz to what is now the affordable hot hatch bang is the Citroen DS3 DSport.
In what is already a crowded ring, the sub $35,000 performance car sector will soon be oozing with choice with anticipated releases of the Toyota 86, Hyundai Veloster Turbo and Ford Fiesta ST amongst others.
The French hatch is run by a modified version of the 1.6L turbocharged Prince engine – lovechild of a BMW-PSA joint venture. Maximum torque is available from just 1400rpm, however the ability to translate this to the road is harder than that of its most famous competitor and its DSG gearbox – the Polo GTI. The engine is the mated with a traditional three pedal 6 speed manual gearbox that can feel notchy and disengaged for a car of this focus and Citroen have not included any automatic or dual clutch options.
What they restrict in transmission choices, however, they return in trim options. The colour of the roof, dash, wheels and even gear-lever can be customised to the owner’s specifications.
These interior preferences are easily found outside and in where quality plastics and purposeful design cues catch drivers’ attention; a floating dash shade, polished satin metal surrounds and vanishing B-pillar.
Those interested in the DS3 Dsport will have to ignore various aspects of the competition. The DS3 is by no means the fastest of its segment, does not have the best badge reliability record and is definitely not the cheapest to service or maintain defying latter day servicing intervals with their own 10,000km/6 month schedule.
However, when comparing spec sheets between this and its rivals, the DS3 is always close to being the fastest, economical and prestigious and prospective buyers game enough take the leap to test drive will be persuaded by its finish, individuality and charm to become owners.