DS Automobiles, the premium French label under the Stellantis group’s umbrella, is developing a new addition to its expanding lineup: a flagship electric crossover recently spotted testing for the first time in Europe. While the upcoming model’s name remains a mystery, possibilities like DS 8 or DS 9 Crossback have been suggested in the past.
In the past, you say? Well, yes, as Citroen’s slightly quirky, somewhat premium and undeniably French offshoot hinted at its intentions to introduce a luxury coupe-crossover back in 2020 with the futuristic DS Aero Sport Lounge concept. At the time, DS design chief Thierry Métroz confirmed that the study was “a prelude to our next creations” teasing what lay ahead.
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Since then, the French automaker hasn’t divulged any specific details, but the camouflaged prototype we spotted during winter testing showcases a high-riding, fastback body with a sharply sloping roofline – much more than the aforementioned concept. With its coupe-crossover proportions, the model could be DS Automobiles’ electric interpretation of the Peugeot 408 and the Citroen C5 X fastback crossovers.
From the spy photos, we can see that the new DS flagship sports slim headlights with the characteristic LED fangs extending on the front bumper. While the grille seems to be covered, the lower bumper intake handles cooling duties. The side profile reveals a sleek rear end, complemented by slim taillights at the back.
The car is expected to ride on Stellantis’ new and flexible STLA Medium architecture, recently introduced in the Peugeot E-3008 and set to underpin various models from 4,300mm (169 inches) to around 4,900mm (192 inches) in length. While it seems like a fitting platform for the new DS model, it’s worth noting that the Peugeot 408 and Citroen C5X currently utilize the older EMP2 platform.
In any case, the mildly posh Stellantis brand has committed to exclusively introducing EVs and PHEVs starting in 2025, aligning with the anticipated launch of the DS 8 / DS 9 Crossback, or whatever other moniker the French opt for. The photographed prototype showcases a fully electric powertrain, possibly shared with the forthcoming Peugeot E-408.
The platform allows for electric power outputs ranging from around 210 horsepower in single-motor versions to well over 300 horsepower for dual-motor applications with all-wheel drive. Additionally, it supports battery sizes of up to 98 kWh, offering up to 435 miles (700 kilometers) of range between charges. However, given the existing technology, DS could also opt to offer a plug-in hybrid version as an alternative.
As for the timing of the introduction, we might witness the unveiling of the new DS flagship as early as the last quarter of this year. However, an early debut in 2025 is also a possibility.