In-depth Reviews

DS 3 hatchback (2016-2019)

"The DS 3 stands out in the upmarket supermini market thanks to its practicality, style, fun-to-drive character and well built interior"

Carbuyer Rating

2.9 out of 5

Owners Rating

3.2 out of 5

Read owner reviews

Pros

  • Stylish inside and out
  • Quite cheap to run
  • Good to drive

Cons

  • Quite expensive to buy
  • MINI is more fun to drive
  • Only available as three-door

With a significant set of revisions, the Citroen DS 3 morphed into the DS 3, becoming the first model in the standalone DS brand. It’s positioned as a chic, fashion-conscious and more upmarket brand than Citroen that culminates in the DS 7 Crossback – France's first luxury SUV.

The name has heritage; the original Citroen DS was a beautiful and technically advanced car launched in the 1950s, and the brand is designed to capture some of that magic.

The DS 3 is a small hatchback positioned as an alternative to upmarket supermini rivals such as the MINI Hatchback, but its glamorous looks inevitably pitch it against other fashion-led models like the Fiat 500 and Alfa Romeo MiTo. It also competes with the likes of the Ford Fiesta and Volkswagen Polo for buyers’ attention – and wallets.

The DS 3, like the Citroen version before it, sells in big numbers, and a range of options makes it tempting for many buyers. Interior and exterior customisation appeal to those who want to make their DS 3 reflect their personality.

The DS 3 is more than a pretty face, though. It’s more practical than the Fiat 500, although like that model, it’s hobbled slightly by a three-door-only bodystyle.

The DS 3 range has been slimmed down considerably for the 2019 model year but the models still offered represent good value, and you can have a well equipped DS 3 for less than £20,000. The entry-level Connected Chic model packs cruise control, air-conditioning and a touchscreen infotainment system, sat nav and 17-inch alloy wheels.

The range is topped by the DS 3 Performance Line, which while offering no increase in performance over the Connected Chic model does look the part with both exterior and interior upgrades. There are also two special-edition models, called Cafe Racer and Forever, which add a few design and interior trim tweaks.

Just one engine is now offered in the DS 3 – the three-cylinder 1.2-litre 109bhp PureTech petrol – and it can only be had with a six-speed automatic transmission. It’s claimed to return 44.8mpg, and has CO2 emissions of 114g/km, which places it in the 26% Benefit-in-Kind (BiK) tax bracket.

Most Popular

Engine management light: top 5 causes of amber engine warning light
Engine management light: top 5 causes of amber engine warning light
Car technology
22 Jun 2022

Engine management light: top 5 causes of amber engine warning light

Top 10 cheapest electric cars 2022
2021 Citroen Ami
Best cars
16 Jun 2022

Top 10 cheapest electric cars 2022

Top 10 best electric SUVs 2022
Skoda Enyaq charging
Best cars
24 Jun 2022

Top 10 best electric SUVs 2022

More on 3

New DS 3 Crossback 2019: price, specs and release date
2019 DS 3 Crossback front
DS 3 hatchback
11 Feb 2019

New DS 3 Crossback 2019: price, specs and release date

DS’ stylish small SUV will start from £21,550, with an electric version due later in the year
Top 3 stylish superminis for £10,000 – Citroen DS 3 vs MINI Cooper 3dr vs Renault Clio
Renault Clio
18 Jul 2018

Top 3 stylish superminis for £10,000 – Citroen DS 3 vs MINI Cooper 3dr vs Renault Clio

Dear Carbuyer: I'm looking for a stylish automatic hatchback to use around town. What can you recommend for up to £10k?
Stylish DS 3 Café Racer goes on sale in limited numbers
DS 3
14 Jun 2018

Stylish DS 3 Café Racer goes on sale in limited numbers

1960s motorcycle culture inspires DS 3 model limited to 150 examples in UK
DS to unveil all-electric SUV later this year
DS 3
22 May 2018

DS to unveil all-electric SUV later this year

September's Paris Motor Show to host reveal of first all-electric DS
DS 3 Cabrio convertible (2016-2019)
DS 3 Cabrio convertible
3 Apr 2018

DS 3 Cabrio convertible (2016-2019)

"Stylish, good to drive and surprisingly practical, the DS 3 Cabrio has what it takes to beat the Fiat 500C"

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
23 Mar 2022

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Electric car charging station
Tips and advice
5 Nov 2021

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Car buying
17 May 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
20 Jun 2022

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors 2022
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022
Ioniq 5
Best cars
25 Apr 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022
Nissan Leaf front
Best cars
3 May 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022
Audi RS 3 driving - front view
Hot hatches
24 Jun 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022