Cost & verdict

DS 3 review

Manufacturer price from:£16,270
What Car? Target Price:£13,807
Search new deals
DS 3
Review continues below...
11 Nov 2015 00:00 | Last updated: 31 Aug 2018 14:19

In this review

Cost & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

DS DS 3 hatchback running costs

The DS 3 isn’t cheap to buy, even next to other premium rivals such as the Mini 3dr. Decent dealer discounts make it more affordable and, unlike many of Citroën’s mainstream models, it holds its value reasonably well, if not quite as well as a Mini hatch or Audi A1.

With the exception of the automatic model, all of the DS 3’s engines are impressively efficient and two of the diesel versions emit less than 100g/km of CO2. The 1.2 Puretech 110 petrol comes in at 100g/km, which is also pretty good for benefit-in-kind tax for anyone thinking of running one as a company car.

DS DS 3 hatchback equipment

All DS 3 models have a decent standard of kit, but every version is expensive compared with rivals. The entry-level Chic gets a 7.0in touchscreen, a DAB radio, Bluetooth and air-con, but it is only available with the weaker Puretech 82 engine. For that reason, we would recommend stepping up to Connected Chic to get a better choice of engines.

Performance Line is hard to recommend because it's mainly style-focused, so there's not any extra additional equipment for the premium you pay, while the range-topping DS 3 Performance hot hatch is the best version of the car to drive and comes with all the equipment you need, but it's expensive.

DS 3

DS DS 3 hatchback reliability

The DS 3 did pretty poorly in our most recent reliability survey, showing an average of 53 faults per 100 cars. Although DS didn’t appear as a manufacturer in that survey, sister brand Citroën did and was rated near the bottom, in 28th place out of the 32 brands included. Not a great showing all round.

DS DS 3 hatchback safety and security

Stability control and six airbags may be standard, but automatic emergency braking is standard only on the top Prestige and Performance Black trims, and either optional or not available at all lower down the range. That is one of the reasons it was awarded just three stars when tested by Euro NCAP in 2017, but there were other factors. These include poor head and chest protection for rear-seat passengers and a strong risk of whiplash for those in the front and rear, while the protection offered to children was also rated poor.

Security experts Thatcham Rsesearch awarded the DS 3 four out of five for its resistance to being stolen and three out of five for its resistance to being broken into. All models have deadlocks: an alarm is standard for the top three trims only.

open the gallery250 Images


Much to like, but the crashy ride stops it being the best

  • Lots of style for your money
  • Strong and efficient engines
  • Classy cabin
  • Not as good to drive as a Mini
  • Rear-seat space isn't great
  • Versions with big wheels don't ride that well
There are 6 trims available for the DS 3 hatchback. Click to see details.See all versions
Connected Chic
This is our favourite trim because it keeps the price down but gives you access to better engines in the range. Standard equipment is good, adding to the Chic trim 17in alloys, climate control, rea...View trim
Fuel Diesel, Petrol
What Car? Target Price from
Average Saving £2,463
View Trim
Parthenon Cream
This model has an exclusive Parthenon Cream exterior colour and topaz roof, as well as front and rear parking sensors and a reversing camera. Otherwise the spec is the same as Connected Chic...View trim
Fuel Petrol
What Car? Target Price from
Average Saving £2,583
View Trim
Performance Line
This sporty trim level isn’t cheap and is difficult to recommend because the only upgrades it gets over Connected Chic are style-focused, including different 17in alloys, a spoiler and some light D...View trim
Fuel Diesel, Petrol
What Car? Target Price from
Average Saving £2,892
View Trim
Black Lezard
As well as everything Connected Chic trim comes with, you get special styling upgrades, leather seats, power-folding door mirrors, xenon headlights, automatic lights and wipers and – wait for it –...View trim
Fuel Petrol
What Car? Target Price from
Average Saving £2,991
View Trim
Ines de la Fressange
Comes with everything the Connected Chic trim has, plus power-folding door mirrors, xenon headlights, climate control, rear parking sensors and automatic lights and wipers. The main difference is a...View trim
Fuel Diesel, Petrol
What Car? Target Price from
Average Saving £3,114
View Trim
Cafe Racer
We are yet to try out this variant...View trim
Fuel Petrol
What Car? Target Price from
Average Saving £409
View Trim