Today we consider DS as a standalone brand, but when it was launched in 2009 it was tied to Citroën and was marketed as the manufacturer’s premium line.
The first model to carry the new label was the 2010 Citroën DS3. This three-door supermini offered a variety of petrol and diesel engines, as well as a range of fairings. Personalization was an integral part of its appeal (owners could choose different color combinations for the exterior and interior) with the Mini 3dr being the main target.
At this point, the DSport version we’re interested in here uses the same 1.6 liter turbo gasoline engine developed by PSA Group and BMW as the Mini Cooper. In DSport it made 154 hp compared to 121 hp in the Cooper.
Click here to buy your next used DS3 from Autocar
The Cooper was the car everyone wanted, but the DSport (despite its £ 17,500 price tag) quickly found friends among those who appreciate its roomier, well-appointed cabin, larger trunk, precise steering, neat and responsive handling, the refined and precise manual valued gearbox and powerful engine (0-62 mph took 7.3 seconds).
It looked good too. Personalization created some outrageous color combinations (for example, yellow and black, and baby blue and white, each repeating on the inside of the bezel and seats), but the more conservative ones will be happy to know that sober black and white versions are plentiful. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a bargain, the louder paint jobs seem to be driving prices down.
The DSport features 17-inch alloys, power windows and mirrors, dual-zone air conditioning and Bluetooth. In 2011, the DSport Plus came with more kit, including leather trim.
In 2014, the 1.6-liter engine was increased to 163 hp, but this did not result in any noticeable performance boost. Two years later, in 2016, DS became an independent brand, so that the model became the DS 3 DSport. It had been dropped by the end of the year.
DSport is really just warm, not hot, so those looking for a bigger thrill should check out the 204hp DS3 Racing, launched in 2011 and aimed directly at the Mini JCW. Greased by Citroën Racing, it reached a speed of 0 to 62 km / h in 6.5 seconds. To keep everything in shape, it sat 15mm lower and had a 30mm wider track than the DSport.
There are few used ones, but we tracked down a 52,000-mile 2012 car in orange and black for £ 7,490.
Is racing a future classic? Possibly due to its major performance overhaul and the fact that there are so few (150 at last count). Before you take the plunge, however, you should know that replacement parts for the carbon fiber splitter and other aerodynamic additions are expensive and nearly impossible to obtain if you damage one.
With the creation of the DS brand, racing became performance, now with 207 hp. We found one in 2016 with 56,000 miles for £ 10,990.