Citroen DS5 tested

By RIZAL JOHAN | 5 June 2014
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If you are different from the rest, then Citroen’s range-topping DS model is probably the car for you.

The Citroen DS5 is the flagship model of the French automaker and it is, without a doubt, a piece of art.
And you do not have to be a car enthusiast to see that.
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Just by looking at the beguiling exterior design will set you wondering whether it is a state-of-the-art station wagon or a hatchback (it is a crossover between the two, actually).
Even motoring journos are amazed at the car’s design because, more often than not, it is more akin to a concept car that travels auto shows around the world without ever going into production.
Yet, lo and behold, Citroen’s premium offering is available at RM188,888 (on-the-road with insurance).
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Its sleek and aerodynamically sculptured body is aesthetically pleasing, whether you are looking at the bold front fascia, the large headlamps with daytime running lights, or the chrome-finished ‘sabre’ running from the bonnet to the A-pillar.
Usually a car with this much stuff going on has the tendency to be over-designed.
But that’s not the case with the DS5 as its styling is refined with elegant touches all round.
If you thought it looked cool outside, wait until you get in because it is just as amazing.
The cabin is basically a cockpit with its aviation-inspired centre console and driving position.
It has front and rear sunroofs with rear passengers enjoying a much wider sunroof.
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You have seats as big as sofas covered in leather with a bracelet confection (that’s the folds which look good enough to eat).
And there are overhead controls in the upper central console for the sunroof and head-up display (HUD) including compartments for your sunglasses (preferably aviators of course, maybe Citroen should include that as an option).
Now when I say aviation-inspired, perhaps you think driving the DS5 is like piloting a jet fighter.
Of course, it isn’t but it does feel like it especially when its colour HUD emerges from the dash.
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It is right in your line of sight, so with a little bit of imagination you could conjure up a crosshair with a horizon line projected on it when in actuality it displays driving speed and navigation information.
Another thing that’s aviation-inspired are the controls.
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Everything is placed centrally including the power window switches.

There is quite a bit going on at the centre dash with the display screen, rectangular timepiece, push start button and an array of controls for the radio, CD player and dual zone climate control.
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It may look all over the place at first but then you realise that Citroen has compartmentalised every bit of space to make it as artistic and functional as possible.
And then there’s the flat-bottomed four-spoke steering wheel which is rather large but has a really nice grip to it.
The DS5 offers a relaxed, smooth and comfortable ride with its cosy seats, pliant suspension and smooth gear changes.
The cabin is well insulated, keeping NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) levels to a minimum and I really enjoyed the sound quality from the Arkamys audio system with 10 Denon speakers.
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Plus there’s plenty of room for rear passengers and space in the boot too with 468 litres.
The DS5 has a turbocharged 1.6 litre engine which churns out 154hp at 6,000rpm and 240Nm of torque at 1,400rpm.
It takes 9.7 seconds to go from 0 to 100kph but the availability of maximum torque at low revs means you can pull away effortlessly.
I was also pleased to learn that the DS5 handles pretty well in corners.
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My only gripe would be the narrow visibility of the rear windscreen but other than that, it has useful features like a reverse camera, front and rear parking sensors and an automatic rain sensor.
And you have a lot of safety features too with six airbags, anti-lock braking system (ABS), electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD), emergency brake assist (EBA) and electronic stability program (ESP).
The DS5 is a car that captures the finer points of art, design and auto engineering and put it all in a practical and functional package. 


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