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Petrol-only Citroen DS5 launched in Oz

And that makes three: The DS5 completes Citroen’s DS premium range.

Citroen DS5 last hurrah for importer as French brand rights set to switch hands

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Citroen logo10 Sep 2012

LIKE its French sister company Peugeot, Citroen has elected to leave its hybrid powertrain tucked up at home in Europe for now, instead launching its premium DS5 mid-sized five-door hatch in Australia in a single petrol-powered variant.

Concerns about the ability of the hybrid powertrain to handle the hot Australian summer have prompted Peugeot to defer the local launch the Hybrid4 powertrain in its 3008 and 508 RXH until its engineers can complete their hot-weather testing regime, and now Citroen has followed suit with its DS5 hybrid.

Other powertrains might follow later – provided the new local Citroen importer wants them.

The DS5 is the last Citroen hurrah for the current importer, Ateco Automotive, which is negotiating the transfer of the local distribution rights for the marque to rival Syme Darby early next year.

That deal would put both Citroen and Peugeot under one roof for the first time in this country.

Based on the same platform as Peugeot’s 3008 and Citroen’s own Picasso people-mover, the DS5 completes the DS range for Citroen Down Under, joining the DS3 and DS4 in the local line-up.

The well-equipped DS5 is priced at $47,990 (plus on-road costs) – a $3500 premium over the $44,490 C5 Exclusive sedan – and will target buyers who might otherwise consider the Volkswagen Passat, Honda Accord, Audi A4 and BMW 3 Series.

In France, the DS5 is offered with a range of four powertrains – two diesels, one petrol and one diesel-electric hybrid – but the only engine to be offered at launch in Australia is the 1.6-litre turbo-charged petrol four-cylinder widely used in existing PSA Peugeot-Citroen models, including the C5 and DS4.

A co-development with BMW, this version of the engine develops 115kW of power at 6000rpm and 240Nm of peak torque between 1400rpm and 4000rpm.

Mated exclusively with a six-speed automatic transmission and driving the front wheels, the engine propels the DS3 from standstill to 100km/h in a sedate 9.7 seconds.

Fuel consumption is a claimed 7.3 litres per 100km on the official combined test cycle, while CO2 emissions are said to be 169 grams per kilometre.

Originally unveiled at last year’s Frankfurt motor show a year ago, the DS5’s strong suit is its spacious and versatile five-seat cabin, along with a boot that can hold 465 litres of luggage.

The interior design is said to have been inspired by an aircraft cockpit, with overhead switch-gear running down the centre of the roof.

Also overhead is a sweeping three-piece glass roof, with electrically powered sun blinds to control the light and heat.

The centre console is said to hide a humongous 13 litres of storage in two compartments, and includes a cooled area for drinks.

Standard equipment includes keyless entry and start, head up display, reversing camera, electric-adjustable driver’s seat with heating and massage function, dual-zone climate control air-conditioning, automatic lights with auto high-beam headlight switching, rain-sensing wipers and sat-nav.

Given a five-star safety rating by the European New Car Assessment Program (ENCAP), the DS5 gets a cornering light function that Citroen says will increase visibility by up to 75 degrees when turning.

The DS5 rides on 18-inch alloy wheels and MacPherson strut suspension at the front and independent with trailing arms at the rear.

Five paint colours are offered – black, silver, white, grey and blue-silver. All come with leather interior, in brown or black.

2012 Citroen DS5 pricing*
DS5 (a)$47,990
*Plus on-road costs

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