Citroen DS Inside

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Citroen DS Inside

Behold the Citroen DS Inside, a concept car that shows how the planned Mini and Fiat 500 rival will look when it goes on sale next year.

The production car will be called the DS3, and it will be the first of a collection of DS models that focus on style and compete with smaller BMWs, Audis and Mercedes.

The DS Inside is a little under four metres long and has design features such as a floating roof (highlighted by a contrasting colour) and a distinctive shark fin panel just behind the rear door.

Expect the car that reaches showrooms in the first half of 2010 to remain faithful to the concept car.

The concept car also shows off a new Citroen badge with redesigned chevrons, while a new DS badge sits in the middle of the tailgate, above a centrally mounted exhaust.

More traditional Citroen-style headlights are complemented by LED lights in the deep front spoiler.

The rear lights are similarly distinctive, as are the chrome slashes on the bottom of the doors.

Inside, the designers have been given free reign to come up with some delightful detailing, from the chrome gearknob and handbrake trim to the conical instruments and low-slung seats, which give a clue to the car's sporty intentions.

The production DS should offer a range of petrol and diesel models, with power outputs from 90bhp to a Mini Cooper S-rivalling 155bhp. Citroen is aiming for a model with CO2 emissions of less than 100g/km, while there's also talk of a microhybrid model, too.

The DS is expected to offer boot space similar to the Mini Clubman at around 265litres.

Plus, just like the Mini and Fiat 500, there'll be myriad ways to personalise your DS3 so no two cars will be alike.

You should be able to choose from 43 exterior colours, 10 seat upholsteries, 25 wheel designs, 15 door mirror housings and eight stick-on graphic themes, which will include eco, art, fashion, heroes and sport.

Although DS models will be more expensive than similarly sized Citroens, we're promised that they'll be cheaper than rivals from premium brands such as BMW and Audi. So we'd expect the DS3 to start at under 12,000 when it arrives next year.

Citroen DS Inside video
See the Citroen DS Inside on video by clicking here

Other cars
Originally shown at last year's Paris motor show, the Citroen GT concept car has also been given an encore.

Read about it at Citroen GT.