DS 5 review - French premium offering doesn't quite hit the mark - DS 5 interior and tech

Style and character in spades, but DS still has work to do if it's to dethrone the traditional premium brands

Evo rating
Price
from £26,350
  • Unique design inside and out, comfort, refinement
  • Far from being a driver’s car, ride could be improved further

In many respects, the DS 5’s cabin is its most appealing feature. The first thing you’ll notice when stepping inside is how high you appear to be sitting – very crossoverish – and the second is the unique view out of the front.

With the front windscreen at such a rake, DS Automobiles (Citroen, in reality) has seen fit to split the A-pillar in two to enhance visibility – one element flanks the windscreen, the other the leading edge of the door. The glass panel in between is actually ideally placed to squint around corners and the pillars themselves seem relatively narrow, so visibility isn’t compromised.

Subscribe to evo magazine

Experience the thrill of driving with evo magazine. Subscribe now and get your first 5 issues for £5 or buy the latest issue in all good newsagents!

It’s relatively good in all directions in fact, and combined with the ‘cockpit roof’, which has an individual glass panel above each front occupant and a larger sunroof above the rear passengers, there’s a glassy feel to the cabin. Our only concern is that taller passengers may struggle for headroom, as the complicated roof arrangement seems to intrude quite significantly.

The dashboard itself looks fairly good, as does the leather and brushed metal steering wheel and the fighter plane cockpit-style instruments. The seats are very comfortable too and between wheel and seat there's good adjustment, though rear passengers don’t have quite as much room as you’d expect.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

It’s a refined, relaxing environment too. Noise levels are minimal on all but the poorest surfaces, with relatively low wind noise and not too much engine grumble disturbing the cabin. Combined with the unusual view out the front and the squashy seats, it feels a little like piloting a TGV train.

The cabin is let down by a few ergonomic oddities, however. One is the flat-bottomed steering wheel, which feels unusually large. Another is the 7-inch touchscreen, which is a bit pokey by modern standards, mounted at precisely the right angle to make it impossible to read when it’s sunny outside, is a little too far away not to have to stretch, and feels old-hat to use. The placement of some buttons and switches is daft too – the hazard button is an even greater stretch away than the touchscreen, and the rotary heating controls (good!) are squashed behind the gear selector (bad!).

Advertisement
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/ferrari/201950/new-ferrari-roma-612bhp-198mph-gt-car-joins-the-range
Ferrari

New Ferrari Roma: 612bhp, 198mph GT car joins the range

Ferrari has expanded its GT car range with the V8 powered Ferrari Roma
14 Nov 2019
Visit/maserati/granturismo/201792/maserati-granturismo-zeda-run-out-model-revealed
Maserati GranTurismo

Maserati GranTurismo Zéda run-out model revealed

It’s out with the old, in with the new as the final GranTurismo paves the way for Maserati’s ambitious electrified future
12 Nov 2019
Visit/mclaren/201626/mclaren-elva-revealed-new-open-top-speedster-adds-to-top-tier-ultimate-series
McLaren

McLaren Elva revealed – new open-top speedster adds to top-tier Ultimate Series

It’s the lightest McLaren Automotive model yet, packs 803bhp and will cost from just under £1.5m
13 Nov 2019
Visit/features/22907/hyundai-i30-fastback-n-versus-the-col-de-turini
Hyundai i30 N hatchback

Hyundai i30 Fastback N versus the Col de Turini

We take the Hyundai i30 Fastback N up the Col de Turini, a 31km stage of the Monte Carlo World Rally Championship
19 Jul 2019