THE perfect car for women should have a pink dashboard, a cosmetics kit and LED lighting that makes it easier to apply.
Before you fire up your keyboards and prepare your email to The Champion’s editor that’s not me being sexist for the sake of an intro. That’s the genuine specification of a three-door hatchback you’ll be able to order in a couple of week’s time.
I haven’t been on enough political correctness courses to work out whether or not the DS 3 Givenchy Le MakeUp is patronising to the opposite sex or just brilliant brand placement. Girly cars with pink upholstery are nothing new (take a bow, Fiat 500), and nor is marketing your upmarket bit of motoring with a fashionable label (the Range Rover Vogue, for all its blokey off-road credentials, was originally named after the fashion magazine). But blending the two is genuinely brave stuff.
The encouraging news is the basic package is genuinely good stuff. I’ve driven several DS3s – admittedly when they were badged as Citroëns rather than a posh French brand in their own right – and all had an enticing blend of consummate handling, plucky engines and energetic, youthful styling. It’s exactly the sort of fun-filled family car I’ll hop into for a cheeky B-road blast.
But – and here’s the rub – I can’t help feel sorry for the bloke whose car breaks down one Monday morning, with no public transport to hand. The only way of getting to the office on time is to borrow the other half’s DS 3 Givenchy Le MakeUp, and all his mates are going to see him driving it. It’s a car named in honour of make up, for heaven’s sake. Our poor friend – who might as well walk to work wearing a short skirt for the same effect – is going to feel like an utter berk driving it.
That’s my problem with gender-specific cars. Women are far brighter human beings than most males are and are perfectly capable of adapting any car to their needs without the need for pink upholstery and in-built cosmetic kits, and don’t need manufacturer help. It also begs the question of where the bloke equivalent is – a DS 3 The Lad Bible with an in-built fridge full of Carlsberg and some Liverpool season tickets is just about as ludicrous, but that won’t happen any time soon.
The DS 3 is a brilliant car – but chucking make up and silly pink trim at it doesn’t improve it one jot.