DS Automobiles, which is the luxury brand owned by Groupe PSA, has just revealed their latest creation, which a large saloon car that’s roughly the size of a Mercedes-Benz E-Class or BMW 5-Series and has an E-Tense plug-in hybrid powertrain. Exciting.
The DS9 certainly offers up a welcomed change from the monogamy that is German luxury saloons. The large French sits composed at 4.93 metres long and 1.85 metres wide and is constructed on a newer version of the EMP2 or Efficient Modular Platform 2 architecture which has a longer wheelbase, not used with a saloon car before, and greatly benefits rear passengers.
Styling and design flair is probably one avenue that allows the DS9 to break the tie when it comes to choosing a saloon in its segment. The DS9 has a steeply raked rear windscreen, fastback style but lacks frameless side windows like on the new Peugeot 508. The flagship saloon is also described by the brand as having an “expressive” front fascia which includes the parametric design of the grille with its three-dimensional diamond effect. Further, it has DS Wings and a ‘Clous de Paris’ sabre on the bonnet, the first time this DS interior signature is used outside the cockpit.
As mentioned in the on-set, the DS9 will be powered by a plug-in hybrid powertrain setup called E-Tense. The launch powertrain comprises a PureTech turbocharged petrol-fed engine and an electric motor with an 11.9kWh battery pack. Together they make 168kW of power and has a zero emissions range of between 40 and 50 km when measured on the WLTP cycle. The electric motor, through an eight-speed automatic gearbox, can deploy up to 80kW and 320Nm.
Shortly after launch, two more powertrain options should become available to most buyers. First up, it’s a two-wheel drive version with 187kW with added range capability and is available to Chinese buyers at launch. The second power unit on offer is an all-wheel drive version with 269kW of power on tap. Brilliant!
The DS9 also has an energy recovery system on board that recharges the battery pack when decelerating and braking. This is further amplified by an enhanced braking function selected by pulling back the gear selector and an E-Save function which guarantees there’s always selected levels of battery-stored energy to do chosen parts of the journey in EV mode.
The DS9 is loaded with a host of tech including DS Active Scan Suspension which uses an optical sensor to scan the road ahead along with other sensors and accelerometers, prepares the dampers for what’s ahead and is described by the brand as a “21st Century DS Suspension” which is a nod to the 1955 Citroen DS which employed a revolutionary hydropneumatic suspension system.
Still on the subject of tech, safety, is also of paramount importance to DS and the 9 shows it. DS Safety is a suite that combines DS Night Vision, DS Driver Attention Monitoring, DS Active LED Vision, blind spot monitoring, AEB and traffic sign recognition. Moreover, it comes with DS Park Pilot which is a system that detects a parking spot and get you in it – all at the touch of a button. It also receives DS Drive Assist which is a level-2 autonomous driving system that’s usable at speed of up to 180 km/h.
According to the DS9’s manufacturers, the large saloon will be sold worldwide and will be produced in the People’s Republic. No prices have been quoted thus far. Watch this space for more updates on the large French.