Find a car review

Make
Model

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

If you're passionate about the world's greatest performance cars, experience the thrill of driving with evo magazine. Try your first 5 issues for £5.

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

Most Popular

Visit/features/17721/the-best-family-cars-that-are-fun-to-drive
Best cars

Best family cars that are still fun to drive

Saloon, hatchback or SUV, family cars come in all shapes and sizes, and needn’t be a snore to drive. These are some of the team’s favourites.
13 Sep 2019
Visit/electric-cars/201750/volkswagen-id3-r-considered-the-next-generation-golf-r
electric cars

Volkswagen ID.3 R considered – the next-generation Golf R

Bosses confirm a hot electric VW is under consideration, and we could see it within the next five years
12 Sep 2019
Visit/abarth/201755/2020-abarth-595-pista-arrives-with-162bhp
Abarth 595

2020 Abarth 595 Pista arrives with 162bhp

The supermini has been given a new Garrett turbocharger, paint options and tweaks inside
13 Sep 2019
Visit/article/201613/goodyear-eagle-f1-supersport-picked-by-porsche
Sponsored

Goodyear Eagle F1 SuperSport - picked by Porsche

Goodyear has many close associations with premium global car brands, but being asked to develop a trackday tyre for Porsche's extreme 911 GT3 RS was a…
14 Aug 2019