These are the first spy photos of the Citroen DS4 crossover testing.
The DS4's styling is set to be previewed by the High Rider concept car, which will be on display at next month's Geneva motor show. It will give the firm a rival to the Nissan Juke and Mini Countryman when it enters production in early 2011.
It uses the new Citroen C4’s platform, itself due to be launched later this year, and is taller and wider than the current C4 hatch at 1480mm and 1820mm, although it is slightly shorter than the current C4 at 4260mm.
However, the styling is much more radical than the C4’s, drawing influence from both the smaller DS3 and the C-SportLounge concept from 2005.
Much of the High Rider’s front-end styling is borrowed from its smaller DS3 sibling, including the grille, headlights, bonnet sculpting and badging, all of which should carry over to the DS4 production car. More radical design features, such as its fog lights, 19-inch alloys and fabric roof, are unlikely to feature.
The DS4’s Engines are likely to be borrowed from the next C4 range and a version of the concept’s diesel-hybrid powertrain should also make production. The electric motor sits on the rear axle, providing extra power and torque to the rear wheels under certain driving conditions. The diesel engine drives the front wheels ensuring the car is four-wheel drive.
The DS4 will be further removed to the C4 than the DS3 is to the C3 and its origins are less obvious than the DS3’s. It will be pitched as a more refined and luxurious model within the C4 range, which includes hatchback and Picasso models, rather than the DS3’s billing as a sporty, more dynamic version of the C3.
The DS4 is scheduled to go on sale early next year, before a C5-based DS5 arrives later in 2011.