The 4, in either guise, remains more concerned with the ‘design’ bit of the equation than the ‘engineering’.

DS describes the model’s two distinct bodies as complementary versions, which is a roundabout way of confirming that there isn’t a dramatic amount of difference between what is ostensibly the same shell.

Nic Cackett

Nic Cackett

Road tester
I wonder how many people walked away from the DS 4 when they discovered the rear windows didn’t wind down

The most noticeable change is the introduction of the signature DS front end, carried over from the 5 and a suitable replacement for the 4’s previous nose, which was too conspicuous in its retread of the C4’s design (right down to the Citroën grille).

Ridding the 4 of its sibling’s double crest and replacing the headlights does at least bring the model more noticeably into the DS fold, but previous accusations of close similarity to the C4 are still hard to shake.

Bespoke features – not least the relocating of the rear door handles into the window line – remain, yet so does the suspicion that the car just isn’t special enough to look at.

In this respect, the differentiated wheel arch trim, rear spoiler and roof bars do make the Crossback marginally more interesting to behold, even if its 30mm of extra ride height isn’t necessarily apparent on first inspection.

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Mechanically, the facelift hardly gets any more profound. The exclusively front-driven model remains based on the second generation of the C4, so it’s still underpinned by the same outgoing PF2 platform.

Citroën’s chassis-based tinkering has been limited to the conventional passive suspension, where the springs and dampers have been revised in both variants, although it is the Crossback that has gained the softer settings its predecessor plainly needed.

The steering remains a curiosity, using an electro-hydraulic set-up rather than the electrically powered system common in Citroën’s range.

The engines are more familiar. A single turbocharged petrol unit, the 128bhp 1.2-litre three-cylinder PureTech 130, is available in either the 4 or Crossback, but the more powerful 1.6 THP four-pot (in 163bhp and 207bhp guises) is the preserve of the hatch.

Diesel options are split between the entry-level 118bhp 1.6 BlueHDi 120 and the larger 2.0-litre motor, sold as 148bhp and 178bhp variants.

A six-speed manual gearbox is standard (as fitted to our test car), leaving the latest EAT6 six-speed torque converter auto on the options list, unless you first go for one of the most powerful engines.

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