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DS 5 vs. Citroen DS 23 Pallas: it was better before?

August 8, 2019


This year, the Citroën DS is turning 60 and the DS5 "restyled" becomes the first model of the new DS brand. Filiation is cleverly cultivated. The argus wished to celebrate this passage of witness on the place even of the birth of the original DS.


Forty years after the end of the production line, the Citroën DS returns to its birthplace in Paris with its heiress: the DS 5 . Times have changed, the factory of Javel who assembled from 1955 to 1975, 1 456 746 Citroën DS is no more. This industrial temple built just one hundred years ago, became in 1992, a place to walk: the park André Citroën . This pleasant place in full Paris welcomes the DS of yesterday and today. The latter is a DS 5 Edition 55 , a limited series that refers to the DS of 1955. The loop is complete.  

The ultimate DS and DS5

Do not be fooled by appearances, the DS 5 is shorter than the DS 23 Pallas


We called the original Citroën DS and its great-great-granddaughter, the DS5 . The first is a model DS 23 Pallas of 1973, the second is the new DS5 which just arrives in concession. 

Both are the latest developments of their kind. The DS 23 Pallas is in a way the ultimate development of the DS, with its rotating headlamps and the last dashboard of the DS.


 It is the passenger of the DS 23 Pallas who is in charge of the car radio.


The 2015 DS 5 releases a 7-inch touchscreen GPS


While the "new" DS5 - especially no longer call it Citroën DS5 - since now DS is a full-fledged brand in the PSA group, adopts a new grille, full LED headlights and connected technology. It is the embodiment of the French premium and as the new slogan "avant-garde spirit" says. Each of our two protagonists of the day has the best of its time. 


A style at the forefront for the 2 DS

The DS5 is shorter (4.53m) and taller (1.50m) than the DS 23 Pallas (4.80m and 1.47m). The wheelbase of the modern DS is short (2.73m) compared to the 3.12m that separates the axles from the old one.


The carinated and rotating headlights appeared on the 1967 vintage.


The classic DS always has its effect, witness the eyes of passersby of all ages and especially that of children, who have eyes only for her. The Citroën DS is and will always be this charismatic car that marked its era on Thursday, October 6, 1955 when it unleashed the crowd of the motor show. 

Module of three LEDs and flashing scrolling DS5 restyled 2015


The DS5 is also an atypical car. If his official presentation in April 2011 at the Shanghai show was not as resounding as that of his great-great-grandmother, the car is nonetheless a rolling concept-car with a silhouette without equal. Mixed with coupe and minivan, the DS5 stands out for its flamboyant, sculptural style and graphic details. 

DS 23 vs DS5: futuristic cockpits


The dashboard DS 23 Pallas no longer has the formal purity of the DS 19 of 1955, it is more opulent. It has been padded to gain safety.


The tachometer in the center contains a braking distance indicator on dry ground: 80 m at 100 km / h, 150 m at 140 km / h and 250 m at 180 km / h.


The door without frame of the DS 23 opens, it is necessary to step over the wide spar of the chassis then to fall into a ultra fluffy chair. A feeling of comfort that is more today the furniture of living room than the automotive world. Preventive for your sitting, the Citroën DS is also for your feet since the thick carpet on the ground has an almost spongy character. The driving position sitting as on a chair obviously testifies to another era. 

The furniture is very sculpted and ergonomics may surprise at first, but the DS5 does not lack originality. Throughout its history, Citroën has accustomed us ...


Three counters also for the DS5 but with obviously much more information compiled


Taking a seat on board the DS5 requires less gymnastics than for the DS 23 however the surprise comes quickly. The advanced windshield like that of a minivan with side windows gives a forward vision less clear than on board the old whose very fine amounts are today hardly reassuring. The glass roofs above the front seats, split by a console on the ceiling of the DS5, are immediately thought of the cockpit of an airplane. However, unlike the Citroën DS driven by Fantomas who deploys its wings and takes off, the DS 5 will remain riveted to the ground and will not take off ...  


Start a DS: almost a ceremonial

Queen of the road for over 20 years, the Citroën DS erases all imperfections of bitumen


A frail pedal for the accelerator and a mushroom for the brake, to dose with moderation.


To begin, the ignition key is inserted to the left of the steering column. A position quite usual for owners of Porsche 911, but is much less on a sedan. Then, it is the handling of the gearshift lever that starts the starter. Two functions in an accessory that reflect the avant-garde philosophy of the DS for which engineers have brainstormed to innovate in every detail. After unlocking the parking brake with a left foot-operated switch - a device that is still in the news at Mercedes - all you have to do is smoothly accelerate to a senator's train. It should be kept in mind that any support on the "mushroom" which acts as a brake pedal will stop the car as soon as possible.   

With its new grille "DS Wings", the DS 5 2015 is no shortage of pace.


The window regulator controls on the center console are rather unusual, the DS 5 has its own vision of ergonomics.


The free hand key of the new DS5 can stay in your pocket, no need to insert it into the dashboard. Then press the start button , prominently under the needle watch that seems from another era in this new DS5cantor of touch and digital, taking care to keep your foot on the brake pedal. As a precaution, the DS5 writes all safety instructions in red on black in the instrument cluster. Then position the gearshift of the new automatic gearbox EAT 6 on D (read our test of the new DS5 2015), and the electromechanically controlled parking brake will unlock automatically. You are ready to ride. I almost forgot to adjust the exterior mirrors for not having found the order on the door against the same as that of the other levées panes. The first is located to the left of the steering wheel on the dashboard where precisely most German manufacturers implement the controls of the headlights. The seconds are located at the bottom of the central console whose design recalls the furniture of modern Porsches.    

Longitudinal engine almost in the front center position for the DS 23 Pallas obviously gasoline. Diesel crossbar on the axle of the DS5


Back benches: Chesterfield or watch strap?

Wide and comfortable seats separated by an armrest at the rear of the DS 23 Pallas who knows how to receive.


There is plenty of space behind the Classic DS . It is not for nothing that General de Gaulle adopted it as an official vehicle but also for his personal use. The "great" Charles could live there without hindrance his meter ninety-six. As at the front the seats and the carpet are soft at wish, the depression in the chair makes it possible to improve the guard to the roof. The light is not lacking either and the vision is 360 degrees. The high side windows, the panoramic rear window and the long rear deck provide this clarity. However the tapered shape of the DS whose tracks are wider at the front than at the rear, this in order to magnify the virtues of the front wheel drive, gives narrowness to the rear seats. 

The leather saddlery watch strap style is an exclusivity of the brand DS.


Getting off the DS 23 to settle immediately in the DS 5 is a rewarding experience for the latter. The contrast is striking and the stiffness of the sit as a folder surprises. This is only a relative feeling because in use the saddlery of the DS5 is nothing of a board of wood. The concept of comfort has evolved well in 60 years. Another complaint against the DS5, rear windows - whose controls are positioned at the end of the console between the front seats - that do not go down entirely. This obliging François Hollandeto greet the crowd on the day of his inauguration by a specially arranged sunroof. Finally, the DS5 is 27 centimeters shorter than its "ancestor" is less generous for legroom. The "modern" DS retains its revenge by offering more width and a glass roof - so fixed for ordinary mortals - above the rear seats. 

See you in 2075 to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the DS 5!

The line of the DS continues its journey with the new DS 5.


At the end of this meeting, it is obviously not a question of declaring the one or the other winner but simply to evoke the continuity and legitimate filiation between the so-called DS today classic and the new DS5. Each in its own way marks the automotive landscape of its time, each with its definition of avant-garde. Remains a question in 60 years what aura will he remain at the DS5. gives you an appointment in 2075! We were there 60 years ago find back the presentation of the DS 19 in 1955 in L'argus de L'Automobile and Locomotions. 




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