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DS 4: What is the verdict on the compact DS saloon?


The DS 4 three-quarter rear view

In 2021, DS automobiles presented the second generation of the DS 4 compact sedan, which entered a very competitive segment where the Mercedes A-Class and the BMW 1 Series, among others, monopolise the first places. Two years after its launch, what are the sales results of this second generation DS4?

First observation: the DS 4 sold 5,475 units in France in the first half of 2023, putting it ahead of the Mercedes A-Class (3,990 units) and very close to the BMW 1 Series, which is only 44 units ahead. With a 30% increase in sales compared to 2022, the DS 4's sales are recovering, allowing it to return to the top in France. At European level, the second generation DS 4 is still far behind its German premium rivals, with 11,233 units sold in Europe in the first half of the year (up 42%), compared to 44,491 BMW 1 Series (up 31%) and 43,341 Mercedes A-Class. Worse still, the DS 4 sells less than the Cupra Leon (19,277 units), but it does much better than the first generation DS 4, which will allow it to build up a customer base over time that will help its sales grow in the coming years and generations.


Mostly hybrid sales...

When it was launched, the DS 4 gave pride of place to plug-in hybrid engines, in particular 225 hp, which coexisted with petrol and diesel internal combustion engines. The fruit of DS's efforts on low emission vehicles, it is naturally the plug-in hybrid version that makes up the bulk of sales as it represents 44.54% of DS 4 sales ahead of the Puretech 130 (36.55%) then the HDi diesel engine which represents less than 20% of sales.


The DS 4 is therefore mainly sold with the plug-in hybrid engine, a trend that will increase in the coming months with the arrival of the 136 bhp Puretech simple hybrid engine, which will allow the DS compact sedan to be driven even more by hybrid engines before the arrival of the 100% electric version sometime next year.

...and make on the models at the heart of the range

As a French premium model, the DS4 sees the vast majority of its sales made on the core range versions (Performance Line, Performance Line + and Rivoli), which account for 74% of sales, while the entry-level Bastille version only accounts for 6%. Sales. In a range made up of 7 finishes, it is therefore the core finishes that sell the most, with the entry level or top of the range versions being reduced to a minimum.


Customers also enjoy the fact that many opt for options such as the two-tone black Perla Nera roof, chosen by 45% of customers, the sunroof, chosen by 38% of customers (but costing €950) or even the motorised tailgate, chosen by 36% of customers. Finally, customers are also happy with the colour of the bodywork, with Cristal Pearl being chosen by 27% of customers, despite its price of €1,000, closely followed by Platinum Grey (chosen by 22% of customers at a price of €890), then Lacquered Grey (17% of customers).


As we can see, DS 4 customers mainly choose the plug-in hybrid engine and a mid-range finish, but they are not afraid to go through the options box to improve their car's equipment by choosing expensive options such as the two-tone roof or sunroof, or even the Cristal Pearl paint. This should increase the average price of the DS 4 and improve the DS's margins, which, despite lower sales than its rivals, should ensure its generational renewal.

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