It's official – Citroen is building a hot hatch version of the DS3. Back in Issue 1,058, we broke top-secret plans for the pocket rocket. And now, these exclusive spy shots – as well as info from several inside sources – confirm that the model is definitely on the way.
The newcomer will be badged the WRC, in a nod to the fact that five-time world rally champ Sebastien Loeb is driving a DS3 in this year’s series. And with around 200bhp from the same turbocharged 1.6-litre powerplant as in MINI’s Cooper S and JCW, it will certainly have the pace to justify the name.
While exact performance details have yet to be revealed, sources have suggested the car will be faster than our current favourite hot hatch – the Renaultsport Clio 200. This is capable of 0-60mph in 6.9 seconds and has a top speed of 140mph.
Citroen UK product boss Melina Kacherou-Carage confirmed the roadgoing version of the DS3 WRC will be revealed at next month’s Geneva Motor Show.
Sister firm Peugeot has also come up with a rally special. It has released a limited-edition 207 S16 (below) – designed to celebrate Ulsterman Chris Meeke’s victory in last year’s Intercontinental Rally Challenge. However, the upgrades are only cosmetic – under the skin is a basic 120bhp 1.6-litre petrol engine.