DS7 SUV facelifted, drops the Crossback name – new E-Tense 4×4 360 twin-motor PHEV range-topper, 5.6s – paultan.org

The DS7 Crossback – first revealed in 2017 and launched in Malaysia in 2019 – has received a facelift featuring updated design in and out, new lighting, fresh tech and a new range-topping plug-in hybrid variant with twin motors. The Crossback name is dropped for 2022, so the SUV is now simply called the DS7.

The DS7’s face sports sharper lines, the DS ‘wings’ and the grille are larger and the valance has been redesigned with a range of colours depending on the variant. The most obvious changes are in the lighting department, where there’s a combination of new and slimmer DS Pixel LED Vision 3.0 headlamps (increased range and low speed width), and the DS Light Veil LED daytime running lights that are made from 33 LEDs. These are “carried out in the spirit of high fashion,” the French brand says.

At the back, the super distinctive scale-like LED lights remain, but they’re now have a dark metallic finish, and the tiny words on the bridge linking the lights now read ‘DS Automobiles’ instead of ‘Crossback’.

The new Edinburgh and Silverstone 19-inch wheels are fitted with inserts that improve aerodynamic efficiency, and their design magnifies perceived size. The car pictured here, the new E-Tense 4×4 360 range-topper, wears exclusive 21-inch Brooklyn rims with a “sculpted techncial design”. The window surrounds and roof rails can be had in gloss black.

Inside, the updates are in tech and materials. The biggest news is the inclusion of DS Iris System in the infotainment. It brings an all-new interface that DS says is “completely configurable, reactive and seamless,” supported by natural voice recognition. The redesigned 12-inch touchscreen features a menu made up of widgets for accessing functions with a single movement, front and rear views from new high-res cameras, and access to the Mirror Screen over WiFi.

Along with it is a new 12-inch digital instrument panel with displays that can personalised. It sports refreshed graphics for vital information including energy flow on plug-in hybrid variants.

DS cabins are always flamboyant, and materials play a big part. The DS 7 Opera is offered with two Nappa leather colours (Basalt Black and Pearl Grey) and the hide with a “draped effect” is now on the dashboard and door panels. Without seams or joints, it maintains the feel and appearance of natural leather, DS says. There are embossed lines in the style of the DS Light Veil DRLs.

DS says that its high-quality Nappa leather comes straight from cows raised for their meat, living in fields without barbed wire. Interestingly, the seat base and back is created from a single piece of leather, and without a bead of stitching.

Attention to detail is exhibited on the pearl stitching, a steering wheel in full grain leather with a leather covered airbag and trademark cues such as the Clous de Paris embossed inserts and the “watch bracelet” upholstery. Performance Line cars have black Alcantara with “Gold and Carmine” accents. The ambient lighting can be personalised, and it has a new pattern based on the Clous de Paris inserts.

Last but not least, what’s under the DS7’s sculptured skin. There will be three plug-in hybrids with 225, 300 and 360 hp. A 130 BlueHDi option is still available for those who want diesel, and outside Europe, PureTech petrol engines with 130, 215 and 225 hp will also be offered.

The front-wheel-drive E-Tense 225 pairs a PureTech 180 engine and a 110 hp electric motor fitted to the eight-speed automatic gearbox. The E-Tense 4×4 300 and E-Tense 4×4 360 variants combine a PureTech 200 engine to 110 and 112 hp e-motors on each axle. The 360 is tuned by DS Performance.

A new 14.2 kWh battery provides up to 65 km of pure electric range on the WLTP mixed cycle, and up to 81 km on the urban cycle. Charging time is about two hours on a 7.4 kW charger.

The E-Tense 4×4 360’s DS Performance tuning is mostly in optimising energy management. It has a DS Energy Coach application that supports the driver by supervising braking phases to improve energy recovery. The chassis is lowered by 15 mm, the track is wider (+24 mm front, +10 mm rear) and the front brakes are 380 mm discs with calipers by DS Performance. With a 0-100 km/h time of 5.6 seconds, this is a quick PHEV SUV.

Also new are things like DS Active Scan Suspension and DS Night Vision. The trick suspension is a camera-controlled damping system that’s unique in its class, adjusting each wheel independently according to imperfections on the road. DS Night Vision is an infrared camera that sweeps the road and its edges to detect cyclists, pedestrians and animals at distances up to 100 metres. The driver is alerted via the digital meter panel.

The Stellantis brand says that the DS7 is a global car. Built in Mulhouse, France for all markets outside of China (that large market will have its cars from Shenzhen), the order books will open next month in France and deliveries will be in September. The car you see with all the black exterior trim is the La Premiere launch edition.

You can always count on DS going its own way in terms of design. Their cars are not for everyone, but for those seeking to stand out and who appreciate design flair, there’s plenty to pore over here. What do you think of the new DS7?

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