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Alex Ward

Renault Megane faces uncertain future

The future of the Renault Megane is in doubt, senior company bosses have revealed to Auto Express. The Megane has been a staple of the French firm’s lineup since it was launched back in 1995 but dwindling sales and an increased focus on developing electric vehicles have called into question the model's future. Laurens van den Acker, Renault’s design chief, told Auto Express that the company is looking at whether the development costs assigned for the Megane could be better used elsewhere. “Inevitably, once we’re starting to add a range of EVs to our line-up, some of the other vehicles are going to have to go because we just can’t afford to develop all of this at the same time,” van den Acker explained. “The Megane is in a segment that’s increasingly under pressure. You have to put your money where the future of the market is.” Sales for the Megane have been falling steadily since 2010 where 465,732 examples were sold across Europe. That figure has more than halved in less tha..

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The greatest hot hatchbacks of the 2000s

First emerging in the 1970s, hot hatchbacks showed a generation of drivers that they could get their motoring thrills without having to spend astronomical amounts of cash or sacrifice family car practicality. The segment quickly flourished, and has been a permanent, popular fixture in the car market ever since. By the 1980s there was a wealth of hot hatches to choose from, with greats like the Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk2 and the Lancia Delta Integrale among them. Fast forward through the 90s – taking in highlights such as the Ford Escort RS Cosworth and Peugeot 306 GTi-6 – and we arrive at the 2000s. The millennium was widely seen through the spectrum of fast-moving technology, and so it was with the cutting-edge new hot hatches that arrived between 2000 and 2010. There were plenty of gems over the course of the decade, and we’ve revisited our archives to pick out our favourites. For something a bit more retro, check out the greatest hot hatchbacks from the 1980s, or the best hot hatch..

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Coronavirus: support for car finance customers announced

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has announced a package of measures to support car finance customers who are struggling to meet their payments during the coronavirus crisis. The UK’s financial regulator has told motor finance providers that they must provide a three-month payment freeze to any customers facing temporary financial difficulties as a result of the crisis. Plus, if these drivers still need to make use of their car, the FCA says the firm should not take any steps with a view to ending the finance agreement or repossessing the vehicle. Motor finance providers have also been warned not to make “unfair” alterations to PCP or PCH agreements. One example the organisation gives is recalculating a final balloon payment based on the temporary depreciation of a car’s value caused by the coronavirus crisis. Finally, in cases where a customer wishes to keep their car at the end of a PCP agreement but is temporarily unable to afford the final balloon payment due to the crisis..

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Porsche reveals retrofit modern infotainment screens for classic models

Porsche has launched a pair of new retrofit infotainment systems compatible with almost all of its heritage vehicles built between 1965 and 2005. Collectively called the “Porsche Classic Communication Management” (PCCM) system, the two units add a range of digital features to the German brand’s most analogue vehicles - most notably Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connection - and are official Porsche Classic parts. For vehicles built between 1965 and 1998 (so, that’s the 914, 924, 928, 944, 959, 968 and the first five generations of the 911), Porsche offers a 3.5-inch infotainment system which fits a standard DIN-1 head unit mount. It’s an updated version of the Porsche Classic Radio Navigation system, and can receive DAB+ radio while adding a host of modern-day convenience features such as handsfree calling, voice control, updated satellite navigation, bluetooth connectivity and Apple CarPlay. Android Auto is not available on the 3.5-inch PCCM though. image image image image image I..

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