The new DS 9 takes the fight to the BMW 5 Series and Audi A6 with a range of hybrid engines
DS has revealed a new range-topping saloon intended as a fresh alternative to the likes of the Mercedes E-Class, BMW 5 Series, Audi A6, Volvo S90 and Jaguar XF.
Called DS 9, it grows the DS line-up to three models, sitting above the DS 3 Crossback and 7 Crossback SUVs as a long-promised halo model for PSA’s premium arm. It’ll be heading to the Geneva Motor Show next month, before heading to UK showrooms towards the end of 2020.
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It sits on the group’s EMP2 platform for larger vehicles, shared with the DS 7 Crossback SUV and the Peugeot 508 saloon. However, the new DS 9 occupies a larger segment than its Peugeot relation. At 4,930mm long and 1,850mm wide it slots into the full-size executive car market, becoming the largest saloon PSA makes.
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There is a fastback element to the car in profile, but it’s more a traditional three-box saloon. The front end takes inspiration from the brand’s latest launches with a large, diamond mesh chrome-effect grille flanked by chrome headlight detailing, vertical LED running lights and DS Active LED Vision headlights, with five separate automatic modes. A chrome strip runs down the centre of the bonnet to the windscreen, too, signifying the model’s flagship status.
The sides of the DS 9 are a mixture of smooth surfacing and strong lines – the sharp shoulder crease contrasts with flush door handles. The back features a compact rear end with trademark DS 3D diamond pattern LED taillights, more chrome detailing, a smooth rear bumper, and a nod to the original 1955 DS in the form of the indicators – they’re mounted high on the car’s C-pillar.
The dashboard and interior are heavily based on the DS 7 Crossback’s, with the only real obvious differences being the door panels, interior vents and a storage space beneath the standard central infotainment display. As on other DS models, buyers will have several interior ‘inspiration’ themes to choose from, each introducing different leathers, materials and interior colours. These are based on the familiar line-up of Bastille and Rivoli themes, using grained leather, Performance Line, which uses black Alcantara, and Opera, which uses red Nappa leather with ‘watchstrap’ style patterning on the seats.
DS promises plenty of room in the back thanks to the car’s 2.9-metre wheelbase. The rear seats can be optioned with heating, cooling and massaging functions, too. DS Active Scan suspension, which uses a camera to read the road ahead and adjusts the damping accordingly, is available.
Elsewhere, DS Drive Assist enables level two semi-autonomous drive functions, combining adaptive cruise control with steering assist and a camera system to pilot the car in a single lane on motorway like roads at up to speeds of 111mph. Automatic parking assistance is also available, as is DS Night Vision, which uses an infrared camera to display the road ahead in clarity on dark and unlit roads. The DS Smart Access smartphone app enables remote control of the car’s locking system.
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Every version of the DS 9 uses an eight-speed automatic gearbox while the engine line-up is heavily hybridised. The launch DS 9 is a plug-in hybrid with a 1.6-litre petrol engine , an electric motor and a 11.9kWh battery, combining to produce 222bhp and capable of 31 miles on battery power alone.
A 246bhp version of this engine follows, as does a range-topping four-wheel-drive E-Tense version with 355bhp. The 108bhp electric motor is the default running gear, with this version of the DS 9 always starting in electric mode. It’s capable of 84mph on the electric motor only, while charging is handled by a 7.4kW on-board system that enables a full recharge in an hour and a half.
A 222bhp front-wheel-drive petrol model with no hybrid assistance comes later. It will be the entry-level model and is expected to kick off the range from around £32,000 when full UK specifications are outlined towards market launch later in 2020.
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