Premium quality has met sub-100g/km CO2 with the arrival of Citroen‘s DS5.

In diesel-electric hybrid form, rather than the standard petrol and diesel models also available, and in the lowest Dsign trim level, the DS5 gets under 100g/km so, until next April, will be in the lowest 10% BIK band thanks to diesel hybrids not being subject to regular diesels’ three-band BIK penalty. Dstyle and Dsport models come in at 107g/km thanks to having larger wheels.

Mating the 163hp 2.0-litre diesel to the 37hp electric motor gives the DS5 a 74.3mpg official figure, as well as the ability to run on electric-only power for short periods at up to 37mph.

There’s a specific ZEV mode for running short distances on electric, or if the battery has recouped enough charge, the car will automatically run in serene electric silence on light throttle at urban speeds. The hybrid motor smoothes out the gear changes from the EGS automatic transmission that we’ve complained about in other, regular installations, and the electric system transforms the shift completely, and banishes the previous jerkiness.

The interior matches up to any rival. Forward visibility is good thanks to a split A-pillar, but the narrow back window means rear visibility is less so. There’s also a little less interior space in the rear than you might expect from what looks like a large executive model on the outside, and the hybrid system munches 140 litres of boot space versus the conventionally powered models, offering 325 litres against 465 litres. There’s also a lack of cupholders and little in the way of interior stowage.

Decent performance from the combined 200hp of battery and diesel means the DS5 is plenty rapid enough, and the car drives well, all of which make it an appealing development that gives Citroen a shot at making sales in the upper medium segment that it has found increasingly difficult in recent years.

Citroen DS5 Hybrid4 DSign
P11D price £27,545
Model price range £22,345-£32,145
Fuel consumption 74.3mpg
CO2 (tax) 99g/km (10%)
BIK 20/40% per month £46/£92
Service interval 20,000 miles
Insurance (1-50) group 26
Warranty 3yrs/60,000mls
Boot space 325 litres
Engine size/power 1997cc/163hp
37hp electric
Top speed/0-62mph 131mph/8.3secs
On sale March 2012
Score 8/10
Verdict Attractive new DS model
with very impressive