Citroens haven't been sold in North America since 1974, but in many ways their 'forbidden fruit' status makes them even more desirable.

The French maker's current DS range doubly so--inspired by the elegant and beautiful DS that ran from the 1950s until the 1970s, each current DS exhibits typical French design flair with a high-quality feel, placing them a level above Citroen's regular models.

With the Paris Auto Show fast approaching, marques like Citroen are given coverage on a world stage, and this year an electric version of the DS3 subcompact will make an appearance.

The DS3 is Citroen's rival to cars like the MINI Cooper, and just like the MINI E, the DS3 Electrum concept will combine style with emissions-free driving.

While not yet slated for production, the DS3 Electrum points towards Citroen's desire to compete with its French rival Renault on electric cars.

The Electrum uses a two-motor electric drive system and Panasonic 17.5 kWh lithium-ion battery pack, replacing the usual range of gasoline and diesel engines.

Range is quoted at only 75 miles, suggesting that the DS3 is very much aimed at city dwellers. To that end, the company is pushing its ability to fast charge 80 percent in only half an hour.

Unlike the MINI E, which sacrificed its trunk space and rear seats to the electric cause, the DS3 Electrum's drivetrain doesn't intrude at all into the cabin, making it an equally practical prospect to the standard DS3.

Also in Paris, Citroen will be promoting the Electric Odyssey, in which two French drivers are taking a Mitsubishi i-based Citroen C-ZERO around the globe. The duo will be speaking to the public on Citroen's stand.

Click on the link to discover more from the 2012 Paris Auto Show.


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