PSA Group’s premium brand DS Automobiles has revealed the DS 9 sedan, that’ll take on the likes of Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Audi A6 and BMW 5 Series. It’ll be available with the brand’s E-Tense plug-in hybrid technology. According to DS, the car is “created in France and produced in China”, and will be sold in markets around the world.
Built on an updated version of EMP2 (Efficient Modular Platform 2) architecture, the car measures 4.93 metres long, 1.85 metres wide and yet-to-be-disclosed high. It has a wheelbase of 2.90 metres.
As for the design, clearly, the designers have put their heart and soul into creating a stunning fastback-style automobile, which becomes more apparent when you take a look at some of the intricate details on the interior. While it adopts the brand’s design language that we’ve already seen in other DS models such as DS 3 and DS 7, the DS 9 somehow looks even more special.
Besides the 3D-effect grille and DS Active LED Vision headlamps, the car also gets what DS calls ‘Clous de Paris’ sabre, in guilloche metal. Exclusive to DS 9, it apparently is a distinctive and identifying feature. My favourite detail, however, is a light/reflector that is on top of the C-pillar – on either side of the rear windshield.
The silhouette plays out with a line that’s unbroken. From the leading edge of the bonnet to the trailing edge of the boot. The sides are smooth and finely sculpted with the flush-fitting door handles incorporated perfectly in the same colour. The headlights are connected to the rear lights with a pure and sharp character line to give the silhouette its tension. The cone shapes, as in the original 1955 DS, play a simple part by extending the roof as well as housing the taillights. – Thierry Metroz, Design Director
As mentioned, the designers’ effort can really be appreciated when you take a look at the DS 9’s interior. The dashboard is completely swathed in Nappa Leather while the roof lining and the sun visors are covered by Alcantara. The seats are upholstered in grained leather and as you’d expect, there are multiple leather options to choose from.
The attention to detail includes crystal-shaped touch-sensitive buttons and of course, the watchstrap-like design in between the air vents. The timepiece rotates 180° for added drama. Also, notice the detailing on the engine start/stop switch. Depending on the variant, other features include multi-coloured ambient lighting and Focal Electra audio system.
More features include DS Active Scan Suspension (which uses a camera, level sensors, accelerometers and drivetrain sensors), Adaptive Cruise Control, DS Park Pilot, and DS Safety which includes DS Night Vision, DS Driver Attention Monitoring, DS Active LED Vision, Blind Spot Monitoring, Automatic Emergency Braking and extended Traffic Sign Recognition.
The aforementioned DS Active LED Vision has five lighting modes that activate automatically –
Parking, Town Beam (width of the beam increases after 5 seconds of driving), Country Beam (focused ahead from 50 km/h), Motorway Beam (range increased from 110 km/h), Adverse Weather (the power of the modules increases and intensity of the main projectors is reduced). The “turning headlight” function and High Beam (automatic switching of road lights and sidelights) complete this feature.
Moving on to the business end of the story, the DS 9 is powered by a PureTech 1.6-litre 4-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine and an electric motor. The motor, through an 8-speed automatic gearbox, can deploy a maximum of 80 kW (110 hp) and 320 Nm. The combined output, however, is 225 hp. The motor draws juice from a 11.9 kWh battery pack.
To maximize efficiency, the DS 9 by default starts off in Electric mode. The top speed in this mode is claimed to be 135 km/h (84 mph). As you’d expect, there’s also a Hybrid mode that depending on the driving conditions, chooses 100% electric or 100% petrol or a combination of both. There’s also a Sport mode that combines both ICE and e-motor and switches to a sporty mapping that adjusts the throttle response, gearbox, steering and active suspension to deliver an enjoyable driving dynamics.
The DS 9 comes with a 7.4 kW on-board charger that is claimed to charge the battery in 1 hour and 30 minutes.
The 225 hp model will be joined later by 250 hp FWD and 360 hp AWD E-Tense variants. In China, however, the 250 hp E-Tense will be offered at launch. A 225 hp sole PureTech petrol engine model will also be available.