Renault Clio V6: Retro Road Test

Renault Clio V6: Retro Road Test

Renault Clio V6: Retro Road Test

This is what happened when Renault was going through one of its off-the-wall phases and decided to stick a V6 engine into the Clio supermini. It wouldn’t fit in the front, so the rear seats had to come out, and a 3.0-litre motor slotted in above the rear wheels.

It’s a hot hatch that was described as a ‘classic’ even when it was new – with many astonished that it even made production. The first-generation model developed a reputation for being particularly lairy, while the phase-two cars (like the one tested here) had some input from Porsche and are more desirable.

What are its rivals?

The Clio V6 was the fastest hot hatch money could buy when it was new. Potential buyers might also consider the Alfa Romeo 147 GTA or SEAT Leon Cupra R, but neither were anywhere near as bonkers as the Renault. In reality, it was closer to being a Porsche 911 in a supermini body than a hot hatch.

What engine does it use?

The Clio V6 was launched at a time when mainstream French cars were available with a 3.0-litre petrol V6. It was already used in models such as the Laguna, Vel Satis and even Espace people carrier, not to mention the Peugeot 406 and Citroen Xantia.

By the second generation model, power had been boosted to 255hp, thanks to a revised cylinder head and induction system.

What’s it like to drive?

What’s it like to drive?

First impressions: this feels like a 12-year-old Renault Clio. The interior is drab, while you sit far too high up – but that’s all par for the course when it comes to hot hatches. Start it up and the sound isn’t exactly thunderous, either.

It only starts to feel a little special when you put your foot on the clutch and select first gear. The clutch is Land Rover Defender-heavy, while the gearbox feels snickety in a way you don’t expect from a Clio.

Pull away and – huge turning circle aside – it all feels a bit, well, ordinary. There are creaks and rattles (and bear in mind this is a cared-for 20,000-mile example), the steering seems surprisingly light and uncommunicative, while you keep telling yourself that it’ll make up for it as soon as you hit a stretch of national speed limit road and open it up.

Does is get better? Well, sort of. It sounds good as you (slowly) rev towards its 7,500rpm redline, but the performance isn’t up to the standard of modern hot hatches. It’ll hit 62mph in 6.0 seconds – an astonishing figure back in the early noughties, but something we’re all too used to now. The V6 feels lazy by today’s standards, too. It’s just not as frantic as you might expect from its appearance.

At least, being mid-engined, there’s none of that torque steer we associate with hot hatches of this era. It feels like it has an abundance of traction, and the later models don’t have the same reputation for being a handful that the early ones did.

Unfortunately, the manic excitement promised by its looks doesn’t really come. Period reviews of the car suggest it takes a little time to get into the rhythm of the Clio V6. And being spoilt by the instant gratification of modern hot hatches probably doesn’t help its case in 2016. It didn’t leave us buzzing with exhilaration, though.

Reliability and running costs

Reliability and running costs

The Clio V6 isn’t as unreliable as you might think, although finding a good specialist willing to work on it might be tricky. The position of the engine makes DIY maintenance difficult, and insurance companies are likely to be a little wary if you’re young or have a number of crashed hot hatches to your name.

You’d be lucky to achieve 20mpg and a tank will be emptied in less than 300 miles, meaning it’s more of a B-road blaster than a continent crosser.

Could I drive it every day?

With prices as strong as they are (and rising), and numbers of the later 255 model hovering at around 150 on UK roads, it’d be a shame to drive one of these every day. And why would you want to, frankly? The interior is pretty grim for spending a large chunk of your life in, and the novelty factor of driving a two-seat mid-engined Clio every day would soon get boring. If you want a sports car as a daily, buy a Porsche Cayman. A Clio V6 is best kept for occasional use. Or just to admire in the garage.

How much should I pay?

How much should I pay?

If you’re after one, this example we’ve driven is currently on sale at 4 Star Classics for £34,995. For that money, you expect the very best – and, to be fair, this is probably it. With just 20,000 miles and not a mark on its bodywork, it could be a safe investment, even at nearly £8,000 more than its retail price when new.

A budget of slightly more than £20,000 will pick you up an early phase-one model (these have a reputation for being even friskier, so be careful), while a useable phase-two can be bought for around £28,000.

What should I look out for?

Obvious ones are signs of abuse and crash damage. Even the latest V6 Clios are more than 10 years old now, and in Renault hot hatch years that’s a long time if it’s been ragged from cold, missed services and chucked into the odd hedge sideways.

With the engine where it is, even checking the oil isn’t particularly easy, so some owners just don’t bother. Take it for a good test drive. Do all the gears select easily (if not, there might be synchromesh issues), and do the brakes stop the car in a straight line without any untoward noises?

Inspect the bodywork – damage can be pricey to fix – and check the wheels for signs of kerbing. The slightest nudge can knock out the tracking.

Should I buy one?

Should I buy one?

A budget of £35,000 buys you a lot of car. You could treat yourself to the brilliant Ford Focus RS, fresh out of the factory, and have a couple of grand left over. Or, on the secondhand market, how about a mint Lotus Exige, a more useable Porsche Cayman, or even a three-year-old BMW M3?

None of these have the novelty factor of being an ageing French supermini from a time when Renault was bonkers enough to use a mid-engined V6. Do you want to be different that much? Only you can make that call.

Pub fact

Rumour has it, when the Clio V6 was being developed, Volkswagen heard that a 3.0-litre Clio was being produced. Not to be outdone on the efficiency stakes, the Lupo 3L was rushed into development – with the goal of consuming just three litres of fuel per 100km. The result was a very different car to the Clio V6…

Thanks to 4 Star Classics for the loan of the Renault Clio V6

Red cars called Mick Hucknall - and other best and worst car names

Red cars called Mick Hucknall – and other best and worst car names

Red cars called Mick Hucknall - and other best and worst car names

Apparently we’re a nation who like to name our cars – with more than half of young adults aged between 25 and 34 admitting to the dubious act.

That’s according to research by Fiat – makers of the 500, the car the most likely to sport eyelashes over its headlights. Probably.

Weird and wonderful names discovered by the car manufacturer include Thor the Thunderbolt, The Anti-Christ and a red car named after Simply Red singer, Mick Hucknall.

Other bizarre names include Turtle, The Mummytruck, Stig, Sexy Rexy, Keith, Mudslick, Hedwig, Kim John Brum, Popeye, and Marv.

The survey found that 27% of adults name their car, while one in 10 men describe their motor as “like a person.” That’s a trifle worrying.

Fiat UK’s brand communications manager, Toni Gaventa, said: “Our cars take us on wondrous journeys and enable us to have unbelievable experiences – it’s little wonder we have such a close bond to them and name them. Cars are more than just transportation – they are extensions of ourselves and represent our personality and there are no cars on the market that have more personality than a Fiat.” Er… OK then.

He goes on to say that celebrities are the biggest source of inspiration for car names, and one in five cars are given a ‘gender-neutral’ name. Apparently this anthropomorphism goes as far as not wanting to offend non-binary vehicles.

Dying to know what the top names are or perhaps looking for inspiration for your own set of wheels? Here you go:

  1. Betty
  2. Percy
  3. Alfie
  4. Fred
  5. Herbie
  6. Matilda
  7. Bumble
  8. Optimus
  9. Harry
  10. Florence

Hyundai i20 Turbo Edition quick review: is it rally good?

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Visit the microsite for the new Hyundai i20 Turbo Edition and the Korean firm will do its best to convince you that the turbocharged supermini is packed with racing DNA. “Discover the road-going i20 lurking beneath the exterior of Hyundai’s latest World Rally Car,” it says.

You’ll have seen the advertisement: the i20 WRC car gets down and dirty on a forest stage, before making its way through a sleepy village and a petrol station car wash. The question is: has the Hyundai i20 Turbo left its “racing DNA” in the autowash? Read on to find out.

Prices and deals

The headline price is £12,795, but given the fact that the majority of customers will pay monthly, the more relevant cost is £165 per month.

For this, you’ll need to part with a deposit of £2,970 plus VAT and be restricted to 8,000 miles a year. That should be enough for a few special stages, mind.

What are its rivals?

The i20 Turbo Edition lines up against some fierce competition, not least the all-conquering Ford Fiesta. But a recent price hike means that Fiesta prices start from £13,545 – or £14,545 if you opt for the 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine.

Other rivals include the Vauxhall Corsa 1.0-litre Turbo, Skoda Fabia, Mazda 2 and Volkswagen Polo.

What engine does it use?

The “racing heart” of the Hyundai i20 Turbo Edition is its 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder engine. The 998cc unit develops 100hp at 4,500rpm and 127lb ft of torque between 1,500 and 4,000rpm.

How fast?

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Floor the “racing throttle” (actually, Hyundai hasn’t used this line), and the i20 Turbo rockets to 62mph in 10.7 seconds – 0.5 seconds quicker than a Fiesta 1.0 EcoBoost with an equal amount of power.

The top speed is 116mph – 4mph more than the Fiesta. In reality, the i20 Turbo feels even faster, helped in no small part by the delightful/irritating (delete as applicable) thrum of the three-cylinder engine.

Will I enjoy driving it?

In short: yes. Beneath that rather sombre – read: disappointingly normal – exterior lies a car that’s genuinely good fun to drive. There’s a hint of old-school turbo lag to get through, but once the turbocharger has woken from its slumber, it’s playtime.

It doesn’t beg to be taken to the redline, like say the Suzuki Swift Sport, but it’s surprisingly eager and there’s a thumping load of mid-range torque. Furthermore, the steering is nicely weighted, while the five-speed gearbox is a joy to use. Whisper this: but this is an i20 you can buy with your head and your heart.

Fuel economy and running costs

Hyundai claims you could achieve 72.4mpg on a combined cycle, but you should take that figure with a pinch of racing salt. Over the course of a week, the display was showing a figure of 37.7mpg, although admittedly we spent the majority of the time exploring those rally credentials.

CO2 emissions of 104g/km puts the i20 Turbo Edition in VED band B, which means no road tax in year one, followed by £20 for each year thereafter. As you’d expect, the i20 comes with Hyundai’s excellent five-year warranty.

What’s the interior like?

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Peek inside the Hyundai i20 Turbo Edition and you’ll find a pair of Sabelt racing seats, a tall sequential gearbox lever, paddle shifters on the steering wheel and a multi-point roll cage. It feels every inch the rally-bred road car.

Actually, none of this is true. Instead you’ll find the standard i20 interior, with Hyundai making no effort to make this special edition feel any more, well, special. We think this is a missed opportunity. It’s pleasant enough, but hardly inspiring.

Is it comfortable?

Yes, it’s comfortable, but we’d be prepared to sacrifice a little comfort in exchange for more in the way of fireworks. As it is, the i20 feels surprisingly grown up, with plenty of space in the front and rear. There’s a hint of body roll if you attempt too many ‘hard rights’ and ‘easy lefts’ at full pelt, but the seats offer plenty of lateral support to keep you in place.

Is it practical?

In the boot you’ll find 301 litres of luggage space, which extends to 1,017 litres with the 60:40 rear seats folded down. 

There are many pockets and storage compartments, including a place for your smartphone in front of the gearlever, two cupholders between the front seats and generous door bins. Rear seat passengers will also find plenty of legroom and headroom.

Tell me about the tech

The Hyundai i20 Turbo is generously equipped, including a 7-inch touchscreen sat nav, a free seven-year TomTom Live subscription, Bluetooth, DAB radio, parking sensors, steering wheel controls, auto lights and a rear-view camera.

A Magneti Marelli engine control unit and direct communication with the works team engineer are both optional. Probably.

What about safety?

The Hyundai i20 was awarded a four-star Euro NCAP safety rating when it was tested in 2015, scoring 85% for adult occupants, 73% for child occupants, 79% for pedestrian safety and 64% for safety assist.

Standard safety equipment on the i20 Turbo Edition includes hill-start assist, six airbags, lane departure warning system and ISOfix child seat anchorage points.

Which version should I go for?

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Hyundai is limiting the i20 Turbo Edition to just 1,000 cars, but you’ll be able to choose from six different colours, including Passion Red, as tested. Sadly, the colours are a little sombre, with even Passion Red more ‘garden centre café’ than it is ‘rally stage service area’.

Sorry to make a big thing of this, but this was an opportunity for Hyundai to capitalise on its rally pedigree. Some additional badges, an interior makeover and some subtle tweaks to the suspension could have made a good car great.

As it is, you’re left with a measly Turbo Edition factory sticker on the door frame.

What’s the used alternative?

The previous generation Hyundai i20 was introduced in 2009 and is the most obvious used alternative. Prices start from as little as £1,700. Buy a later car and the i20 might still be covered by the five-year manufacturer warranty.

Other used options include the Kia Rio, Mazda 2, Suzuki Swift and Vauxhall Corsa.

Should I buy one?

Don’t let our misgivings about Hyundai’s lack of effort to add a touch more WRC to this special edition put you off, because the i20 Turbo Edition is a thoroughly good car. We often found ourselves nipping out for a quick drive, because it’s properly fun to drive. If there’s a hint of petrol running through your veins, you’ll love the turbocharged three-pot engine.

It’s also seriously well equipped and offers tremendous value for money. It might not be as sharp as a Ford Fiesta, but it offers a nicer interior and is a touch quicker on the straights. We really enjoyed our week with the i20 Turbo Edition and would recommend it to anyone who is in the market for a supermini.

Pub fact

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The Hyundai i20 WRC car is powered by a 1.6-litre turbocharged engine developing 300hp. Unlike the road car, it features four-wheel drive and a six-speed transmission, and can sprint to 62mph in under 4.0 seconds, reaching a top speed of 139mph.

Five stars: best used cars for £5,000

Five stars: best used cars for £5,000

Five stars: best used cars for £5,000

This week, we set ourselves a challenge to select 20 used cars for £5,000. Having an open brief is a bit of a mixed blessing, as without a specific theme we’re left with an eclectic mix of cars. On the plus side, there should be something for everyone. We’ve only been window shopping, so inclusion does not represent an endorsement.

Honda Accord

Honda Accord

It would be too simplistic to suggest that if you have £5,000 to spend on a used car you should start with the Honda Accord and go from there. But the fact remains: the Accord is one of the most reliable cars on the planet. What’s more, they tend to be owned by caring owners who stick to the service schedules.

This 2007 Accord appeals for a number of reasons. It’s got a petrol engine, it’s a decent spec, it’s only done 52,772 miles and it’s available through a Honda main dealer.

Buy this car on Auto Trader

Audi TT

Audi TT

If the Honda Accord doesn’t light your fire, an Audi TT might provide a little more spark. A budget of £5,000 will secure a thoroughly decent early TT, with the 1.8-litre turbocharged engine the most common unit.

But we rather like this 3.2-litre V6 TT built in 2004. The 3.2-litre unit was added to the range in 2003 and gave the TT the pace to match its good looks. The DSG transmission was an option and is found on this car, along with an enviable list of equipment.

Buy this car on Auto Trader

Volkswagen Golf GTI

Volkswagen Golf GTI

In 2005, the Volkswagen Golf GTI rediscovered its mojo with the launch of the Mk5. Gone was the lardy Mk4, replaced by something with a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine and a completely new chassis. Quite simply: this was one of the best all-rounders you could buy.

To our eyes, a white three-door Mk5 Golf GTI is a thing of beauty, which is why we love the look of this 2005 car. The DSG gearbox won’t appeal to all, but it’ll reach 62mph 0.3 seconds quicker than the manual version.

Buy this car on Auto Trader

Subaru Legacy 3.0R Spec B

Subaru Legacy 3.0R Spec B

Sleeper or Q-car – whatever you call it, the Subaru Legacy 3.0R Spec B is a car for those who prefer to go unnoticed. Available in wagon or even more discreet saloon guise, this Legacy packs the kind of punch that could leave a BMW or Audi driver weeping at the traffic lights.

Its 3.0-litre ‘boxer’ six-cylinder engine develops a meaty 245hp, yet it looks – to the untrained eye – like a regular Subaru wagon. All this for less than £4,500. You just need to factor in the cost of fuel and road tax, the latter of which being £500 a year. Ouch.

Buy this car on Auto Trader

Skoda Octavia

Skoda Octavia

The Skoda Octavia has always been a more practical and better value alternative to the Volkswagen Golf and they make terrific used buys. Opt for a decent trim level – like the lavish Laurin & Klement version – and a car that’s been well cared for and it could be the best used car you’ve ever bought.

The want is strong for this one: a 2010 car in Laurin & Klement trim and with a 1.8-litre petrol engine that gives it junior vRS credentials. What’s more – aside from a faulty brake light – the MOT history is completely unblemished.

Buy this car on Auto Trader

Volvo C30

Volvo C30

Be still our beating hearts. If the styling of the Volvo C30 doesn’t tempt you, take a moment to consider that T5 badge. It means this design-led coupe is powered by the same 2.5-litre petrol engine you’ll find in the Ford Focus ST. A thinking man’s Focus ST, if you like.

Being picky, we’d prefer the R-Design spec to the SE, but with just 60,000 miles on the clock and what appears to be an immaculate bodywork, we’re finding it hard to resist this sexy Swede.

Buy this car on Auto Trader

Honda Jazz

Honda Jazz

Don’t knock it: the Honda Jazz is popular for a reason. Not only is it one of the most practical superminis on the planet, it’s also brilliantly reliable.

This 2010 Jazz has covered a mere 13,000 miles in six years, so there’s plenty of life left in its 1.2-litre petrol engine. You just know it has been driven slowly and has never missed a service.

Buy this car on Auto Trader

Porsche Boxster

Porsche Boxster

There are many sports cars available for £5,000: pick and choose from the likes of the Mazda MX-5, Toyota MR2 and MGF. But time and time again, the idea of a £5,000 Porsche Boxster rears its head.

We like the look of this 986 as it’s powered by the more desirable 3.2-litre engine, while we suspect any issues might have been ironed out by the time it has passed 147,000 miles. If you’re looking to buy a £5k Boxster, take a specialist with you.

Buy this car on Auto Trader

Inspired? Click through our gallery on MSN Cars to find more cars you can buy today for £5,000

Electric van range HALVES when fully-loaded

Electric van range HALVES when fully-loaded

Electric van range HALVES when fully-loaded

Research by a fleet management company has discovered that the electric range of a plug-in van could HALVE when it’s actually used to carry loads.

The study, carried out by Arval, found that a fully-loaded electric van lost more than 85% of its range over a 33.58 mile course. The same van, carrying nothing, lost just 45%.

“This is a great example of the operational factors that fleets looking at operating electric vans may have to consider,” said Arval UK’s commercial vehicle consultant, Eddie Parker.

“The loss of range is significant at almost 50% and shows that, if you were expecting a fully laden EV commercial vehicle to reach anywhere near the stated range, then you would be disappointed.”

The 35.58-mile test route was designed to represent typical van use, says the company, consisting of 16.8% urban road, 32.5% rural, 21.5% carriageway and 29.2% motorway.

The van travelled between 30 and 70mph, driven by the same driver, with the air-con and non-essential electrics turned off.

Despite the worrying research from Arval, Parker says it shouldn’t put people off electric vans entirely.

“We undertook this test in response to requests from customers who were looking to gain an operational understanding of this kind of vehicle.

“The fact is that, in general use, few vans of this type would ever be fully laden. A typical load for most uses would be much nearer the 50% mark, where the loss of range is much less pronounced. For this reason, we believe the study shows that there is a wider application for EVs than may at first have been thought.”

The popular Nissan E-NV200 electric van has an official NEDC range of 106 miles and features a number of features to extend the range – including regenerative braking and an advanced route planner to help pick the most efficient route.

Parker added: “Of course, all vehicles lose range when fully laden. A diesel van with a full payload would typically see its range reduced by around 35%.”

Nissan Micra

Nissan will help you find friends to buy a car with

Nissan MicraNissan has launched a new shared car ownership scheme that is 100% digital and uses social media channels to match up groups of compatible sharers.

The scheme, called Nissan Intelligent Get & Go Micra, will launch in Paris in April 2017. Other cities, such as London, are expected to follow.

The firm argues it has the potential to “transform the traditional car sharing industry”. This is through the use of social media profiling: Nissan will use social algorithms to pair up suitable groups of people to co-own a Micra.

Nissan Intelligent Get Go Micra

With an added layer of geo-location tech, Nissan believes the new scheme will create a car sharing scheme that works for everyone. Members will pay monthly based on how much they use the car, so they “can expect no nasty surprises”.

The advantage of using social media is that co-owners will be paired up with like-minded people. They’ll likely be a similar age, live in the same area, share similar music tastes and so on: all important considerations when cars are used by multiple people.

And because you’ll know the other people in your co-share group, there’s more incentive to keep the car clean and tidy for others.

Everyone also enjoys much lower cost of ownership – insurance, servicing, smartphone app and in-car tech functions are all included in the price. Bose Personal Audio is also included: this uses speakers in the car’s headrests to enhance sound quality.

Nissan chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn launched the new Nissan Intelligent Get & Go Micra scheme at the Web Summit in Lisbon, Portugal this week. “We are moving toward a future where car usage may be more flexible, social and shared,” he said.

“At Nissan, we’re pioneering new ways to allow drivers to enjoy the freedom and financial benefits of shared car ownership.”

The Nissan initiative comes a week after UK car insurer Admiral announced it would use Facebook profiling to help younger drivers get discounts on car insurance – a scheme quickly BLOCKED by Facebook itself.

It is not yet clear if Nissan plans to use Facebook profiling in its Micra car-sharing scheme. 

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor Show

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor Show

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowThe classic car season might be drawing to a close, but there’s still time to buy a modern classic for spring 2017. We’ve selected the best on offer at the Silverstone Auctions NEC Classic Motor Show sale, including many icons from the 1980s and 1990s.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowLamborghini Countach LP400 S: £350,000 – £400,000

A Bianco White over red leather Lamborghini Countach: you can’t get more 80s than that. All you need to complete the effect is some Jan Hammer on the cassette player, a pair of red braces and a couple of shoulder pads. The LP400 S was launched in 1978 and featured a host of mechanical and exterior upgrades.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowPorsche 911 Carrera 2.7 MFI: £240,000 – £280,000

According to Total 911 magazine, the 911 Carrera 2.7 MFI is the best impact bumper Porsche 911 of all time. The bumpers were introduced to satisfy US safety regulations, and weren’t exactly welcomed with open arms. The magazine claims “the Porsche 911 Carrera 2.7 proved that Zuffenhausen’s G-Series cars could still excite”. This 1975 car was restored in 2015, although “every effort was made to preserve as much of the original car as possible”.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowPorsche 911 Turbo ‘Flachbau’: £130,000 – £150,000

From a Porsche 911 famous for its bumpers, to one famous for its nose. This is a 930 Turbo ‘flatnose’ or ‘Flachbau’, so called because of its streamlined nose. It was inspired by the 935 race cars and a mere 50 were built for the UK market. It was actually destined for North America, but a cancelled order led to it leaving the factory as a right-hand-drive model.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowPorsche 911 Turbo SE ‘Flachbau’: £100,000 – £120,000

‘Flatnose’ Porsche 911 are like buses: you wait an age for one to come along and then two appear in the same auction. Actually, 911 Turbos share little in common with buses, other than, perhaps, the location of the engine. This 1985 ‘Flatnose’ was registered to Porsche GB and wore the famous 911 HUL number plate. This was the cover star of Car magazine, January 1986, with the accompanying line of “Into the red in second, the speedo shows 95mph.”

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowMercedes-Benz 190E 2.5-16 Evolution II: £100,000 – £115,000

We conclude our Porsche triple-bill, but remain in Stuttgart for this Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.5-16 Evolution II. The ‘Evo II’ upped the ante, with 235hp as opposed to 195hp offered by the original Evolution, helping to deliver a top speed of 155mph and a 0-62mph time of 7.1 seconds. Only 502 units were ever produced and the one offered by Silverstone Auctions is number 28.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowBMW M3 Sport Evolution: £95,000 – £115,000

Proof, if proof were needed, that performance cars of the 80s and 90s are in strong demand, this BMW M3 Sport Evolution – or Evo III – is likely to sell for a price in excess of £100,000. In every sense of the word, the Sport Evolution is the ultimate E30 M3, with the engine pumped up to 2.5 litres, delivering 254hp. It was also sharper and lighter than previous models.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowFerrari Testarossa Koenig Competition: £95,000 – £115,000

The Ferrari Testarossa Koenig Evolution was ranked number one in Car magazine’s top 10 German Mod Crimes of the 80s, although author Chris Chilton did note that it’s “probably the most famous modified supercar of the 1980s”. It was the work of racer Willy Koenig, who felt the Testarossa needed more power and a less stylish body. Like blue eyeshadow and Limahl’s hairstyle, some things are better left in the 80s.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowFerrari 412: £80,000 – £95,000

Time has been incredibly kind to the Ferrari 412, a car that can trace its roots back to 1973 and the launch of the 365 GT4 2+2. It arrived in 1985 and, despite appearances, was much improved on the car it replaced: the Ferrari 400. The V12 engine now had a cubic capacity of 4,943cc, while it was also the first Ferrari to offer Bosch ABS as standard. This particular example was first registered in New Zealand and has covered a mere 6,650 miles in three decades.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowFerrari 355 F1 Spider ‘Serie Fiorano’: £75,000 – £90,000

The F355 arrived in 1994 and was the first Ferrari to feature a semi-automatic soft-top roof. The 355 F1 Spider ‘Serie Fiorano’ is arguably the best of the breed, featuring a quicker steering rack, stiffened and lowered suspension, a wider track, improved brakes and a stiffer anti-roll bar. The auction car was delivered new in Florida, before arriving in the UK in 2014.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowFerrari Testarossa: £75,000 – £85,000

If the Koenig-enriched Ferrari Testarossa was a little too much for you, this might be more appealing. Judging by the pre-auction estimate, you can save yourself between £20,000 and £30,000 by opting for something a little more stock.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowPorsche 911 Turbo: £60,000 – £70,000

In model years 1991 and 1992, the Porsche 964 Turbo was powered by a turbocharged 3.3-litre engine developing 320hp, which is lower than the 360hp offered by the 3.6-litre engine, introduced in 1993. This 1992 car was supplied new in the Gulf, before arriving in the UK after a stint in Japan.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowFerrari 308 GTSI: £55,000 – £65,000

The Ferrari 308 GTS made its debut at the 1977 Frankfurt Motor Show – two years after the 308 GTB. Bosch fuel injection was added in 1980 – hence the ‘I’ in GTSI – replacing the four double-choke Webers. This right-hand drive example was delivered new to Switzerland and features a classic red over cream combination.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowAudi Cabriolet: £50,000 – £60,000

You’ll have seen this in one of our earlier features: a 1994 Audi Cabriolet, formerly owned by Diana, Princess of Wales. It’s one of a number of cars with royal connections being offered at the Silverstone Auctions sale.

Modern classics on sale at the NEC Classic Motor ShowBristol Brigand: £50,000 – £60,000

This 1987 Bristol Brigand can’t offer a royal connection, but it was owned by Pop Idol winner, Will Young. Nobody is going to pretend owning a Bristol will be a trouble-free experience – you only need to read the auction notes to discover this – but few cars offer such a unique blend of Britishness and exclusivity.

Need a warranty for your Bugatti Veyron? It'll cost you...

Need a warranty for your Bugatti Veyron? It'll cost you…

Need a warranty for your Bugatti Veyron? It'll cost you...

If you’d paid more than £1 million for a Bugatti Veyron when it was new, you might have been disappointed to discover that it only came with a two-year factory warranty.

With even the latest Grand Sport models now approaching two years old, it’s something that could be a concern for the discerning used Veyron customer.

But worry no more – aftermarket warranty provider WarrantyWise has announced its most expensive cover ever. The £10,000 Platinum Plus warranty covers unlimited claims up to the value of the Bugatti Veyron.

The policy has been created especially for specialist supercar dealer Tom Hartley, where a £2 million Veyron has recently been added to the stock.

When a set of tyres costs £23,500, and a routine service will set you back around £14,000, the idea of something catastrophic breaking could make your eyes water.

The Platinum Plus warranty covers all mechanical and electrical parts, including oil seals, air-conditioning, gaskets, drive belts, wiring looms and radiators – plus labour rates.

WarrantyWise CEO, Lawrence Whittaker, said: “The Bugatti Veyron is one of the most incredible cars ever built, but it comes with a price to match. Servicing and repair costs will always run into the tens-of-thousands, so we wanted to provide Tom Hartley and the Bugatti’s new owner with the best possible cover to make sure there are no unexpected bills at the start of their ownership.

“We’ve got experience in covering almost every car on the road, from Fords to Ferraris, but this latest Bugatti warranty is really the pinnacle of our line-up.”

With a total of ten radiators, four turbochargers and sixteen cylinders, it might be wise to consider investing in a warranty if you’re thinking about buying a Veyron.

Need a warranty for your Bugatti Veyron? It'll cost you...

Need a warranty for your Bugatti Veyron? It’ll cost you…

Need a warranty for your Bugatti Veyron? It'll cost you...

If you’d paid more than £1 million for a Bugatti Veyron when it was new, you might have been disappointed to discover that it only came with a two-year factory warranty.

With even the latest Grand Sport models now approaching two years old, it’s something that could be a concern for the discerning used Veyron customer.

But worry no more – aftermarket warranty provider WarrantyWise has announced its most expensive cover ever. The £10,000 Platinum Plus warranty covers unlimited claims up to the value of the Bugatti Veyron.

The policy has been created especially for specialist supercar dealer Tom Hartley, where a £2 million Veyron has recently been added to the stock.

When a set of tyres costs £23,500, and a routine service will set you back around £14,000, the idea of something catastrophic breaking could make your eyes water.

The Platinum Plus warranty covers all mechanical and electrical parts, including oil seals, air-conditioning, gaskets, drive belts, wiring looms and radiators – plus labour rates.

WarrantyWise CEO, Lawrence Whittaker, said: “The Bugatti Veyron is one of the most incredible cars ever built, but it comes with a price to match. Servicing and repair costs will always run into the tens-of-thousands, so we wanted to provide Tom Hartley and the Bugatti’s new owner with the best possible cover to make sure there are no unexpected bills at the start of their ownership.

“We’ve got experience in covering almost every car on the road, from Fords to Ferraris, but this latest Bugatti warranty is really the pinnacle of our line-up.”

With a total of ten radiators, four turbochargers and sixteen cylinders, it might be wise to consider investing in a warranty if you’re thinking about buying a Veyron.

You can now pay for your car's servicing and MOTs in monthly payments

You can now pay monthly for car servicing and MOTs

You can now pay for your car's servicing and MOTs in monthly payments

Research by the Good Garage Scheme reveals that 42% of drivers put off getting their car serviced because of the cost – a worrying stat as winter approaches and a neglected car could be more dangerous than ever.

To combat this, it’s launching a campaign with racing driver and ex-Top Gear presenter Tiff Needell to encourage motorists to have their cars checked over by professionals this winter.

Alongside the winter car check, which includes an inspection of the coolant, engine oil, tyres, wiper blades, windscreen and lights, Needell will also be promoting the scheme’s service plans.

Available for MOTs and servicing, these split the cost over 12 months as interest-free monthly payments – meaning you can pay for your car’s maintenance just like you would a utility bill.

A search on the scheme’s website reveals you can take out a service plan for a 10-year-old Skoda Octavia 2.0-litre petrol for £23 a month over 29 months.

This includes two standard services and interim service – while, for an extra £5.14 a month, a Good Garage Scheme member will MOT your car for you.

“Service Plans provide a simple, flexible way to budget for servicing and MOT requirements by spreading the cost throughout the year in interest-free monthly instalments, just like any other household bill,” says the scheme’s spokesperson, Simon Wade.

“The plans are available to suit each driver’s needs, with a choice of plans to include interim and standard servicing, with or without an MOT.”

It’s a legal requirement for all cars over three years old (unless they’re exempt – e.g. vehicles made before 1960) to pass the yearly MOT roadworthiness test.

While servicing isn’t compulsory, it’s a good idea to keep your car in good condition and prevent breakdowns. If your car is still in warranty, skipping a service could void this – although many car manufacturers offer servicing packages to make it more affordable while the car is still nearly-new.