The Citroën DS3 was unveiled at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show as one of the new-generation chic performance hatches. Looks very good and is said to drive even better.

Consumers hit hard by a global recession are downsizing. But are they downsizing style and features too? Not so, said the Citroën DS3 after its Frankfurt 2009 introduction.

Billed as one of three DS Line products set to hit the market in the next few years, the DS3 is the smallest and the one with the most emphasis on looks. After all its chief rivals, the MINI and Alfa MiTo are ramp models in their own garages.

The DS3 lives up to the fashionable world with its radical front end, the floating roof and the B pillar "shark fin" effect. Even the interior exudes a higher-class sophistication (optional a scented air-freshener, fitted with a premium chrome-finished control) combined with youthful apparatus like the MyWay satellite navigation system and Bluetooth connectivity.

Citroën are keen to point out that it also handles itself impressively on the road and uses its engines to full effect. Speaking of engines, under the bonnet are three THP petrols worth 71kW (95hp), 89kW (122hp) and 112kW (152hp). Two diesels making 67kW (91hp) and 82kW (112hp) respectively will also be on sale.


Gallery: Citroen DS3 in the Metal at Frankfurt