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DS E-Tense Performance, the influence of racing


NEWS – Associated before the coronavirus with the world of trade fairs, the concepts have not disappeared. The latest from the young luxury brand of Stellantis is an electrical technology laboratory.

DS, it seems to us, missed the boat when this label, which designated a parallel line of premium models, cut the umbilical cord with Citroën in 2014 and decided to strike out on its own. At the time, to stand out in a particularly competitive universe, choosing electric power to become the French Tesla was a daring bet, but not meaningless. It is not obvious that DS would have sold many fewer vehicles than at present. As a bonus, the new brand would have played the role of a technology laboratory for the whole group.

A single-seater chassis

GREG

With four Drivers’ and Constructors’ titles won in the Formula E (FE) electric single-seater world championship, its legitimacy in this market could not be called into question. Finally, on the production front, DS entered through the back door with a DS3 Crossback that shares its electric platform with the Peugeot 208. It is only from 2024 that DS will only launch vehicles electrical. The DS4 E-Tense will be the first model of this new generation of zero-emission vehicles. It is not excluded that this vehicle benefits from the expertise acquired in Formula E and from the test bench that constitutes the E-Tense Performance, the brand’s latest concept.

GREG

Launched last year, the design of this coupe prototype, which we were able to follow, gives clues to the style of future DS models, but also to future technological developments. As much for cost reasons as for deadlines, the DS Performance and style office teams started from an existing base, the 2015 E-Tense concept, on which only the monocoque carbon cell was kept. The new front and rear bonnets prepare the evolutions of the DS style. This study is especially valid for its technology which owes a lot to the world of competition.

Gregory Lenormand / DPPI/Gregory Lenormand / DPPI

The engineers have grafted the running gear and electrical systems of the DS FE21 single-seater entered in the current FE championship, the final of which is scheduled for Marrakech on July 2, onto the existing structure. Both electric motors come from the FE. That of the front of 340 hp is combined with that of the rear of 475 hp borrowed from the third generation of single-seaters which will come into force in 2023. With the trifle of 815 hp, the DS E-Tense Performance thus becomes the car the most powerful of the Stellantis group. Those responsible for the project announce breath-taking performances for the pilot: only 2 seconds to reach 100 km/h. A vigor which would result largely from a controlled mass. Barely 1,250 kilos.

An experimental battery

Gregory Lenormand / DPPI/Gregory Lenormand / DPPI

The relative lightness of the DS concept is based not only on the carbon structure and bodywork, but also on the adoption of a battery weighing barely 250 kilos. Developed by Saft and placed at the rear in a central rear position in a carbon-aluminum composite casing, these accumulators present solutions that could enable the world of electricity to make significant progress. The partners remain silent on the technology, but both the battery chemistry and the cooling system are innovative. Thermal management, one of the key factors in battery performance, relies on a custom-designed cooling system. Cells and electronics are immersed in a fluid that regulates temperature.

Gregory Lenormand / DPPI/Gregory Lenormand / DPPI

By avoiding overheating, this system permanently guarantees the perfect performance of the battery. This has a capacity of barely 25 kWh. For comparison, that of the DS3 Crossback E-Tense provides 50 kWh. If the engineers dispensed with installing a large battery, it is because the concept has breathtaking regeneration power: up to 600 kW. About six times higher than what the best electric models on the market offer. Finally for recharging, thanks to the 800 V installation, the power reaches 350 kW. Five minutes are enough to fill up. Through the DS concept, we already perceive that the world of electrics is becoming more tamed every day. He is still far from having revealed all his secrets

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DS E-Tense Performance, the influence of Formula E


NEW – The lessons of the competition benefit a new electric berlinetta delivering 815 horsepower.

Electric technology is perhaps a boon for French manufacturers to compete with German and Italian brands in the field of power. Judge for yourself: the latest creation from DS, the French luxury brand of Stellantis, manages to deliver the impressive power of 815 horsepower. It’s still only a concept, but the E-Tense Performance berlinetta heralds both the evolution of the brand’s stylistic codes and the evolution of electrical technologies, particularly in terms of battery and energy recovery power. . At the same time, this concept testifies to the existing technology transfers between the DS Performance competition department which has won several titles in the FIA ​​Formula E championship and the series. The engineers did not start from a blank sheet to develop this new vehicle but from the E-Tense concept of 2016.

© Laurent Nivalle

A laboratory car for the technologies of tomorrow, this concept thus benefits from the lessons of competition. The aluminum chassis comes from the single-seater which defends the colors of DS in Formula E. But the power surpasses that of the car of Jean-Eric Vergne and Antonio Felix da Costa. While that of the electric single-seater does not exceed 358 horsepower, the E-Tense concept reviewed and corrected by the Performance department displays a whopping 815 horsepower thanks to the adoption of two electric machines, 250 kW (340 hp) at the front and 350 kW (475 hp) at the rear. In fact, the E-Tense is a four-wheel drive vehicle. The manufacturer announces a torque at the wheels of up to 8,000 Nm.

¢ LAURENT NIVALLE

The real feat of this technological demonstration is to display a regeneration capacity identical to the power, ie 600 kW. This is how this vehicle exempts the driver from having to brake in most cases. This performance also avoids the need for a large battery. Thanks to its carbon shell, the E-Tense berlinetta manages to stay below the 1,300 kg mark. Installed in the rear central position, the battery developed by Saft, a subsidiary of Total Energies, innovates with cells that inaugurate a new chemistry. Its capacity does not exceed 25 kWh. The technology also introduces a liquid cell cooling system with a unique fluid.

This concept is not only used for the development and fine-tuning of the traction chain that will equip electric vehicles from 2024. The design of the grille announces the stylistic developments defined by the team of Thierry Metroz’s team and that will be found on the next vehicles of the French manufacturer.

© LAURENT NIVALLE

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The 2021 list of the most stolen cars


NEWS – According to the weekly Auto Plus, which compiles insurance statistics, the Toyota Prius was the most stolen model last year, ahead of the DS7 Crossback.

In its February 4 edition, our colleague Auto Plus publishes the results of the most stolen vehicles over the past year. Good news: vehicle thefts have not experienced the rebound that we might have feared after a year 2020 marked by multiple confinements and curfews which had deterred thugs. However, 122,700 cars and motorized two-wheelers combined still disappeared in 2021. A sad score comparable to previous years highlights Auto Plus. The weekly stresses that 336 vehicles are still stolen every day. It’s still too much. “Mouse theft” remains the modus operandi most used by thieves. In eight out of ten cases, they resort to this method of burglary theft through over-the-counter equipment on the Internet. To track vehicles and locate them, Auto Plus reveals that criminals use the AirTag (Apple) that owners of an iPhone use to find their personal effects. This tracer the size of a 2 euro coin is thus concealed on the targeted car.

The weekly survey reveals that the Toyota Prius, which has become one of the favorite models of taxis, is also the best seller of car thieves. Interest in this hybrid vehicle stems from traffic around its catalytic converter. The rare metals – platinum, palladium and rhodium – which make up this equipment and whose prices soar, feed a sector. Since the thugs saw the pot in the street, the best parade, according to Auto Plus, is to block access by parking his vehicle against the wall. The Japanese manufacturer appears a second time in the top 10 with the small SUV C-HR (7th place).

According to the Auto Plus survey, French models are favored by thieves. Eight of them appear in the top 10. The DS7 Crossback luxury SUV remains the most stolen French vehicle, taking second place on the podium. Relatively easy to steal, this model would be very popular with drug traffickers and would feed a sector in Africa. This SUV is ahead of the Renault Mégane RS on the third step of the podium. It is ahead of two other models from the Diamond firm: the Clio IV and the Mégane IV. Then comes the second generation of the Peugeot 3008. The DS3 ranks 9th ahead of the current Peugeot 208.

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Béatrice Foucher, the goddess of electricity


PORTRAIT – After having studied at Renault, overseeing the launch of the Zoe, she piloted the high-end brand DS and the acceleration of the ecological transition.

“I ‘feel like I’m smarter when I’m in an electric car ”, doe Béatrice Foucher. She is not going to say the opposite. Renault had entrusted him with the marketing of the Zoe in 2012. “We had to take out the oars to sell it, but it was a great adventure. I could never have imagined that I would one day launch a vehicle at the Leclerc supermarket in Pont-l’Abbé, in the presence of Michel-Édouard Leclerc and Carlos Tavares. It was so improbable. ”

She won’t say it, but her experience of the electric car, which adds to a golden CV – she ticks all the boxes – must have weighed in the balance when the Stellantis group, resulting from the merger of PSA and Fiat Chrysler , entrusted him, in January 2020, with the orders of the DS brand, becoming the third woman at the time to hold these positions, with Mary Barra (General Motors) and Linda Jackson (Peugeot).

Its roadmap: accelerate the international development of the young label and lead the transition …

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DS4, a cousin of the C5 X that knows how to distinguish itself


Developed in parallel with the new top-of-the-range car from Citroën, on the same platform, the next compact from DS, however, succeeds in clearly distinguishing itself.

This cannot be seen but the next DS4 shares its platform with Citroën’s new top-of-the-range and even with the next Peugeot 308. The three vehicles have been developed in parallel from the EMP2 structure which allows a large amplitude of dimensions in playing on the wheelbase and a wide variety of silhouettes. This is just the beginning: Stellantis intends to draw inspiration from the Volkswagen group by developing as many vehicles as possible from Italian brands from this platform. This technical Meccano induces a new industrial organization.

Quite a symbol: the DS4 will be produced in Germany, on the land of the models to which it wants to make life difficult. A sacred challenge which the second DS4 in history tackles with the arguments of a well-proportioned line and a particularly neat finish, in line with the brand’s other achievements.

Like the first DS4 born under the Citroën label, the new model takes the risk of causing trouble

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The DS7 Crossback, the most stolen vehicle of 2020


NEWS – According to the weekly Auto Plus, the family SUV of the French luxury brand was the most stolen vehicle in 2020.

It is a trophy which DS, the young high-end brand of the Stellantis group resulting from the merger of PSA and Fiat-Chrysler, would have gone well. According to the weekly Auto Plus, which compiled data from insurers, the DS7 Crossback was the most stolen vehicle in 2020. The health crisis which led to the confinement of France last spring put a stop to the increase in vehicle theft recorded in late 2019 and early 2020. Finally, vehicle theft fell by 13% last year. If we can only be congratulated, another 121,000 cars have been stolen, or 330 per day.

The surprise of this new blacklist is obviously to see the DS family SUV occupy the first place with 194 vehicles out of 10,000 insured. It suffers from the vulnerability of its opening system. It would take just 1 minute 30 to open and steal the DS7 Crossback with an electronic box. Launched in 2017, the DS7 Crossback would supply large luxury SUV traffic networks. The DS3 and DS5 also remain popular with thugs since they are respectively in 7th and 8th rank of the most stolen vehicles.

Renault on the podium

Renault

French models are decidedly very popular with thieves since the Renault Mégane RS and Clio IV frame the DS7 Crossback on the podium. The two models of the diamond firm are victims of their success. Easy to open and start, these vehicles are very popular on the second-hand market. The Mégane RS is one of the most powerful vitamin compacts. As for the Clio IV, the French favorite for a long time, it was still the most stolen vehicle last year. In 4th place on this blacklist is another Renault, the Mégane 4. The French compact sedan is ahead of the Smart Fortwo and the BMW X6. The city car built for a few more months in Hambach in Moselle supplies a parallel network of spare parts.

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DS4, a new compact full of promise


NEW – With this new model produced in Germany, the young luxury brand of Stellantis wants to carve out a prominent place in the compact sedan market.

Quite a symbol. The DS4 will be produced in Germany, on the land of the models to which it wants to make life difficult. A hell of a challenge which the second DS4 in history tackles with the arguments of a well-proportioned line and a particularly neat finish, in line with the brand’s other achievements. Like the first DS4 born under the Citroën label, the new DS model takes the risk of causing trouble with its raised silhouette, halfway between a sedan and a crossover. Camped on 720 mm diameter wheels mounted on rims up to 20 inches, the latest creation of DS exceeds an Audi A3 Sportback and a BMW 1 Series, respectively 5 cm and 4 cm in height. It’s not nothing.

Victor Jon Goico // Studio Goico

Within the style of the Stellantis group, we are betting that this type of architecture will gradually supplant that of the SUV for questions of aerodynamics and compliance with future increasingly draconian carbon footprint reduction objectives. In terms of size, the DS4 is also one of the longest in its category with a length of 4.40 meters. The styling team led by Thierry Metroz took advantage of the release of this new vehicle to unveil a new light signature which uses adaptive and directional LED Matrix lights embellished with two illuminated claws which descend along the front bumper.

Victor Jon Goico // Studio Goico

The sides are hollowed out, the shoulders are muscular and the roof drops like that of a coupe. Three versions are planned: DS4, DS4 Cross and DS4 Performance Line. Each of them is entitled to a particular typing. The DS4 Cross model will be aimed at a more adventurous clientele with the lower part of the shields painted in matt black, the gloss black grille, its roof bars and its body-colored roof.

DS

The treatment of the passenger compartment is a real revolution. The dashboard takes us into a new world with a large 10-inch digital screen perfectly integrated into the front. It is completed at the bottom of the central console with a small 5-inch touch screen allowing the calligraphy of letters. A head-up display completes the equipment that DS has always wanted more refined with seats in leather or suede (depending on the version), the clous de Paris guilloche finish and a brown ash wood decor.

DS

From the EMP2 platform revisited for the benefit of an increase in rigidity and a reduction in weight, it combines proven engines from the band of PSA components. The DS4 will be marketed with three petrol engines of 130, 180 and 225 hp, a Blue HDi diesel engine of 130 hp and a plug-in hybrid version of 225 hp borrowed from the Peugeot 508 and the SUVs Peugeot 3008, Opel Grandland X, Citroën C5 Aircross and DS7 Crossback. According to the manufacturer, this model would allow an electric range of 50 km. Its electrified technology would not hinder the volume of the trunk announced at 430 liters. The DS4, which wants to become a benchmark in its category in terms of comfort, will integrate the DS Active Scan piloted suspension already seen on the DS7 Crossback and continuously adapting thanks to a camera that anticipates irregularities in the roadway.

The new compact sedan will be marketed in the fall of 2021. It will arrive a few weeks after the large DS9 road.

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DS, when French luxury cars go green


At the head of DS design, Thierry Métroz, keen on craftsmanship, draws an additional source of creativity from the bucolic atmosphere of the former hunting lodge of the Ferté-Vidame test center.

At least one to two days a month, sometimes more, Thierry Métroz is unreachable. Not that the DS design director does not want to be disturbed but due to a lack of network, because his smartphone does not pick up. On these days, it is usually found in a clearing of Perche on an 800 hectare property. Bordered by a 12-kilometer wall, it is located a stone’s throw from the ruins of the Château de la Ferté-Vidame. The estate, not too far from Paris and the Quai de Javel factory, was acquired by André Citroën between the wars. Died in 1935, the industrialist did not see the double-chevron firm set up its technical and prototype testing center there in November 1938. During the war, an attic of the farm was used as a hideout for prototypes of the 2 CV ( which will not be rediscovered until the end of the 1970s). The tracks of La Ferté were also widely used for the development of the DS and its famous hydropneumatic suspension, at the dawn of the fifties.

»Discover the whole of F, Art de vivre

“GRAIN NOURISHED” PROTOTYPES

SDP

At the beginning of the XXIe century, this place extends its field of action, becoming an annex of the new design pole erected by PSA within the DNA (Automotive Design Network) in Vélizy. Determined to dust off the rafters, Jean-Pierre Ploué, the new Citroën design manager, is having a modern building entirely glazed at La Ferté-Vidame. Next to the La Faisanderie hunting lodge, this extension welcomes designers for a new kind of work session. Cradled by the cooing of birds and intoxicated by the scents of the woods, the stylists give birth to a design that Ploué qualifies as “grain fed”. This makes the Franc-Comtois Thierry Métroz smile, his oldest accomplice and fellow student at the Besançon School of Architecture and Olivier de Serres in Paris (ENSAAMA), debauched from Renault to drive the Citroën style then, to from 2012, that of the DS line became the luxury brand of PSA.

SDP

Since then, the latter has become, with his teams, an assiduous user of La Ferté facilities. “Very early in the development process of a new car, we bring in the styling models in foam or clay [argile, NDLR],at scale 1. We roll them by securing them to an electric skateboard, in the middle of the vehicles of the current range and the competition. This allows us to see things that could escape us on a screen or on the DNA terrace. This studio even has technical facilities for modeling new pieces during the day. ” The designer praises these sessions which contribute to the cohesion of the team. “Sometimes the pavilion is used for brainstorming sessions on future projects. Getting oxygenated in the green and finding yourself in another environment feeds our imagination. ”

SDP

Thierry Métroz and DS: a straightforward merger. The two letters symbolize the French art of living and defend the know-how of French luxury through noble materials and craftsmanship and excellence. Universes that speak to this Bisontin, who grew up with a passion for watchmaking and marquetry. “It’s a return to my first love,” he says.

The La Faisanderie hunting lodge in the grounds of the Ferté-Vidame test center. SDP

Through finishes that borrow their name from mythical places in Paris (Bastille, Rivoli, Faubourg and Opéra), the DS creations feature, in particular, the guilloche of certain metal parts, the pearl stitch stitching and the bracelet motif of the upholstery in leather. The emphasis on craftsmanship is combined with the latest technology. “Reconciling craftsmanship and technology, hot and cold is what is most difficult.” To meet this challenge, Thierry Métroz relies on a team of 45 people as passionate as they are talented. With the ambition of becoming “the Vuitton of the automobile”.

The DS Style Team. Laurent Nivalle

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