(Pocket-lint) - The Citroën DS3 is a car that turns heads. The compact hatch brings dramatic design to Citroën's line, with the company shifting more than 200,000 DS3 models since the launch in March 2010.

The latest addition to the range, announced at the Paris Motor Show in November 2012, is the Citroën DS3 Cabrio.

The new model will be hitting the streets in the UK around March 2013, but we laid eyes on one for the first time today, to have a little play with that cabriolet roof. Unfortunately it wasn't available to drive and, given the typical January weather in the UK, that's probably not a bad thing.


The big difference, besides that sliding roof, is the change around the back. As the this is principally a hatchback design, the boot/trunk has been adapted to accommodate the sliding roof. Rather than the conventional door you'll find on the rest of the DS3 models, or a saloon-style solution, this lid lifts up.

Partly, we guess, that's because of the challenge of fitting the hinges anywhere else, but it has the added advantage that you can reverse park close to something and still be able to open up the back. The design also means that you don't lose a huge amount of boot space as you do in some folding-roof designs.


You can open that roof as far as you like, and the rear window will neatly fold itself flat on the rear parcel shelf, with the brake light of the top edge dropping down so it can still be used. It's very neat.

There will be a choice of colours for the roof, which takes 16 seconds to close fully. The best bit is that you can do this while driving at up to 75 miles per hour.


Inside it's very much the DS3 you already know, with its bold, eye-catching design. It might be a little more suited to St Tropez than St Ives, but starting from around £15,000, it’s a smart little cabriolet.

Pictured here is the Citroën DS3 Cabrio DSport THP 155 6-speed manual version. Prices start from £19,000 for the DSport trim.

Writing by Chris Hall.