If you had to write a list of Citroen’s greatest assets, innovation and style would be right at the top. Citroen revived the DS badge to give its designers more space to express both qualities in an attempt to appeal to an increasingly style-conscious market. The DS3 is Citroen’s answer to the MINI and as such is aimed firmly at the lucrative premium supermini market.
First things first, the DS3 Cabrio isn’t a pure convertible as the sides of the roof stay put, instead you get a full length retracting roof which, when completely open, concertinas into a space above the boot lid. The benefits of this are that the Cabrio is barely any heavier than the standard car and maintains the good looks with the roof up. On the downside the roof obscures rear visibility when down and doesn’t look as posh as a full convertible.
Thanks to the roof configuration the interior will be familiar to any DS3 owner and the boot is only reduced by 40 litres which leaves a sensible 245 litres. This puts the MINI’s 125 litres to shame and makes the DS3 Cabrio a more usable everyday proposition. You also get the option of opening the roof in stages, leaving the rear window in place, and it will operate at up to 75mph.
Under the bonnet is a 1.6-litre turbodiesel engine producing 100bhp at 3,750 rpm and 187 lb ft of torque at 1,750 rpm. The torque ensures that in-gear performance is sensible whilst the inherent efficiency of a diesel unit means that great fuel consumption can be achieved. The convertible supermini market is much more about looks and cheap running costs than performance, so this engine makes perfect sense here.
The DS3 Cabrio offers more interior space and more boot space than its rivals, looks good, is decent to drive, and is very efficient. If you want a chic small convertible with five seats and a sensible price tag the DS3 is a great option.