The DS 3 was launched in 2009 as a rather effective rival for the Mini and Fiat 500.
Citroën quickly followed that up with the DS 4 and DS 5. Both were based on older-generation PSA Peugeot Citroën platforms and suffered for it.
When the DS brand was officially spun-off as a stand-alone company last year within the PSA combine, it looked a bit confused and hastily executed.
However, DS accounted for 508,000 sales up to August 2015 and the future looks a lot better organised. By 2020, there will be six DS models on sale and five of them will be all-new.
DS has a long way to go, but with PSA’s excellent EMP2 platform to play with and an impressive engine line-up, it might yet manage to carve out a profitable niche.
Indeed, DS claims the recently facelifted 5 has prompted 75% of buyers to opt for the top two trim levels. It’s this kind of uptake of showroom options (and therefore high-end margins) that really makes a premium brand.
I understand that future models will have money and effort expended on their interiors and exteriors, rather than hard-fought investment cash being used to get into a Germanic technology war.
A luscious all-leather interior might appeal to many customers who care nothing about the specification of the rear axle.