DS has produced some really good cars since becoming a luxury brand all of its own and dropping the Citroen tag.

And this new baby SUV of the range, the DS3 Crossback, keeps that going.

It’s a rather distinctive, futuristic looking thing that appeals to those who want something with some real character.

It’s not a car for people who don’t want to stand out, at least a bit.

There are several versions.

First up is Elegance and that gets you 17in alloys, rear parking sensors, hill start, emergency braking, lane keeping system, electric parking brake, electric windows all round, keyless start, air con, touch screen system, Bluetooth and USB, digital radio, smartphone integration auto lights and the like.

So even ‘base’ spec is full of luxury and tech.

Next is Performance Line, which adds sporty touches looks-wise, including alcantara seats inside, sports pedals and such.

Prestige gets front parking sensors, auto air con, a bigger touch screen and sat nav.

Ultra Prestige tops it out with 18in alloys, more safety kit, a rear camera, head-up display and a swanky version of keyless entry which opens and locks the car very neatly as you approach or walk away.

There is also the beautifully named La Premiere Limited Edition, which gets active cruise control, wireless phone charging and a top end sounds system.

Ours was the Performance Line equipped with the 155hp Pure Tech petrol engine.

It had plenty of go, and was rather lively in sport mode. Eco mode does dull things down a fair bit, but is good for cruising and means you can achieve mid-40s on the motorway, which stacks up well with the claimed 45mpg on the combined cycle.

You can also choose lower-powered petrols, namely the 100 and 130, which get to 52mpg and 47 mpg respectively. All are 1.2 capacity.

As is the trend at the moment, there’s only one diesel, the 1.5, 100hp, BlueHDI, which sees MPG up to 62 to the gallon.

It’s a great drive attached to the excellent eight-speed automatic gearbox. It’s incredibly smooth, never over revs and always finds the right gear, which is more than can be said for some automatics, even in this day and age.

A nice light manual is also available on the 100 petrol and the diesel.

It’s a very comfortable ride, as you’d expect, and handles tightly and feels pretty engaging.

The interior is excellent, with our model boasting alcantara trim that gave a real feeling of enclosed safety and comfort.

It’s all triangles and angles as far as switchgear goes, which gives the DS3 a real identity, even if perhaps it’s not to everyone’s tastes.

Rear space, it has to be said, is tight. This is, after all, a fairly small car, but the boot offers decent amounts of load-carrying space

There were a few niggles for me - over the shoulder visibility is a little tricky due to the rear door design, I found it hard to get my left leg comfortable and the boot doesn’t quite pop up enough to make it easy to open, at least on our tester.

For those that don’t want a particularly big car, but love a bit of individuality and luxury and that certain something that only the French manufacturers can do, many happy miles will be had in this.

Prices start at £21,555 for the 100hp petrol, up to £33,955 for the La Premiere.