2018 Mercedes-Benz X-Class V6

Mercedes-Benz X-Class V6 on show at Geneva 2018

2018 Mercedes-Benz X-Class V6The worst-kept secret in the world of pick-ups is out: Mercedes-Benz will reveal the V6-engined X-Class at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show next week, ahead of the range-topper’s market launch in the summer.

The 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel powering the X 350 d 4MATIC produces 258hp which, aided by a seven-speed automatic, helps it from 0-62mph in a scant 7.9 seconds. Provisional fuel economy figures suggest it will return over 31mpg, emitting 237g/km CO2 in the process.

Unlike the more basic system in four-cylinder X-Class, the 4MATIC all-wheel drive system is permanent, with a rear-biased weight distribution and low-range gearbox. There’s an optional locking rear differential as well, and 222mm of ground clearance, while 600mm of wading prowess furthers its off-road credentials.

Apparently green-lighted after Volkswagen revealed its V6 Amarok, the V6 X-Class will be revealed at Geneva in high-end POWER spec: 18-inch alloys, LED headlights, fancy electric seats, keyless-go and touchpad-controlled infotainment are all standard.

2018 Mercedes-Benz X-Class V6

Peering beneath will reveal double wishbone front suspension and a coil-sprung multi-link rear axle, so it should have the enhanced driving manners to complement the creamy engine – which Mercedes-Benz boasts has features such as F1-grade NANOSLIDE cylinder liner coatings and a variable geometry turbocharger.

Peak torque of 405lb ft is delivered flat from 1,400-3,200rpm, and “serene and efficient progress” is apparently guaranteed (it says here). Knowing how well this engine performs in Mercedes-Benz road cars, we can’t wait to try it in the new double-cab pick-up X-Class.

2018 Mercedes-Benz X-Class V6

Prices might be the only spoiler. In POWER spec, the X 250 d auto costs almost £41,000 (or £34,100 sans VAT, as most double-cabs are sold). Expect a suitable price hike for the V6, which might call for some particularly creative man-maths amongst the small business owners expected to form the majority of posh X-Class sales…

Is my car insurance invalid if I drive during a red warning?

Is my car insurance valid if I drive during a red weather warning?

Is my car insurance invalid if I drive during a red warning?

The Beast from the East is causing traffic chaos across the UK as the Met Office issues severe weather warnings advising people not to drive unless strictly necessary.

The latest ‘red’ alerts issued in areas of Scotland, Wales and the South West of England suggest that imminent loss of life is possible. While going out in these conditions is something that should be avoided, some posts on social media are suggesting that ignoring the warnings could invalidate your car insurance.

“Social media claims that motor insurance will be invalid if people drive during a red warning are not true,” said Malcolm Tarling, from the Association of British Insurers.

“Motor insurance will cover you in the usual way, providing you are driving within the law.”

He added that drivers should heed warnings, and all drivers should pay close attention to advice from local authorities and the emergency services in areas affected by snow.

“Your insurance cover should remain valid whatever the weather, but don’t take that as a green flag to drive without giving heed to the red alert for snow,” Kevin Pratt, consumer affairs expert at MoneySuperMarket, told The Scottish Sun.

“Simply knowing you’re going to get a pay-out shouldn’t mean you take undue risks.

“If your insurance company can prove contributory negligence on your part, your claim might be questioned, and any pay-out reduced.

“For example, if you drove into a swollen ford where there was a warning in place and your car stalled and was ruined by water, your claim might not be paid.

“You might not even be entitled to recovery by your roadside rescue policy because you had recklessly got yourself into trouble.

“The same would apply if you went down a road in contravention of official road closure signs and were subsequently involved in an accident.”

An AXA spokesperson agreed. “If you have breakdown cover, bear in mind that this may not cover you if your car is partly or completely buried in snow, so check your cover before heading off.”

How to spring clean your car

How to spring clean your car

How to spring clean your car

Your car wouldn’t have enjoyed the winter months. When it wasn’t getting rained on from above, it was getting attacked by road salt from below. And we can hardly blame you for not wanting to nip outside to wash it on a weekly basis.

Read more

2019 Jaguar I-Pace revealed

New all-electric Jaguar I-Pace revealed: it’s yours from £63,495

2019 Jaguar I-Pace revealedThe new Jaguar I-Pace is a purpose-designed electric vehicle that, with prices starting from £63,495, costs less than any Tesla currently sold in the UK and is open for orders from keen early adopters right now.

It’s no exaggeration to call the I-Pace a landmark car. In launching a bespoke EV SUV, Jaguar has beaten Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz to market to challenge Tesla. It’s also ahead of the Porsche Mission E, despite that car being first shown as a concept back in 2015.

Jaguar revealed the I-Pace Concept in late 2016, and designer Ian Callum is quick to point out the production version is yet another Jag that is little-changed from the original show car.

At 4.6 metres long, the I-Pace is similar in length to a Jaguar XE, but the firm is claiming large-SUV levels of room inside. Thank the cab-forward design for that, which Callum has intentionally accentuated because there’s no need to accommodate an engine up front.

It’s the exact inverse of the classic ‘long-bonnet’ Jaguar E-type look, but one the firm believes is still authentic. It’s been inspired by the Jaguar C-X75 supercar, which starred in a James Bond film but sadly never made production. The I-Pace is its spiritual ancestor.

The interior is also unlike any other modern Jaguar. It’s a massive (and much-needed) step on for the firm’s interior design language, offering the first application of the JLR Touch Pro Duo infotainment system first seen in the Range Rover Velar, plus the option of textile upholstery from Kvadrat.

2019 Jaguar I-Pace revealed

The I-Pace is a full five-seater, with 890mm of rear legroom and a whopping great 656-litre boot, which stretches to 1,453 litres with the seats down. There’s even an extra boot in the front, which takes 27 litres – just enough to house the car’s charging cables.

Ah yes, the batteries. The I-Pace is launched in 90kWh guise, with the lithium-ion battery promising a 298-mile range under the strict and more realistic new WLTP testing regime. Jaguar has no end of stats related to charging time – from 0-80 percent in 10 hours using a 7kWh home wall box, 0-80 percent in 85 minutes using a 50kWh fast charger… and the promise of 80 miles’ extra range from a 30-minute boost with a similarly fast charger.

Powering it are two Jaguar-designed motors, one front and one rear. The total system power is 400hp (hence the EV400 name), which is sufficient for 0-62mph in 4.8 seconds and a 124mph top speed.

2019 Jaguar I-Pace revealed

The base Jaguar I-Pace EV400 will an S trim line. Jaguar will also sell it as an SE and HSE, plus an ultra-plush First Edition launch model, pictured below.

Here’s how prices of the Jaguar I-Pace compare to the Tesla range:

  • Jaguar I-Pace EV400 (90kWh battery): from £63,495
  • Tesla Model S 75kWh Dual Motor: £70,105
  • Tesla Model X 75kWh Dual Motor: £75,905

Jaguar hasn’t released any kerbweight figures, but does confirm the I-Pace is all-aluminium, and boasts a 50:50 weight distribution. It’s also the firm’s most rigid car ever launched, which further bodes well for handling and dynamics. The battery is mounted low down in the platform, centrally located, to give a low centre of gravity.

Double wishbone suspension up front is supported by the Jaguar Integral Link rear axle. Optional air suspension with configurable Adaptive Dynamics will add further ability.

The I-Pace even has an EV-specific sat nav system, which looks at the topography of the planned route, plus driving style data accumulated over time, to calculate personalised EV range readouts. They give “exceptional accuracy for maximum driver confidence”. It’s the first Jaguar to offer wireless over-the-air software updates, too.

Lastly, because it’s a car for early adopters, Jaguar has created an Amazon Alexa Skill specific to the I-Pace. Ask an Alexa-enabled device whether the I-Pace is locked, or what the charging level is, and Alexa will tell you.

Alexa, when will deliveries of the Jaguar I-Pace begin? Before 2018 is out – and if you want an early taste of what it’s like to drive, come back next week, when Motoring Research gets behind the wheel for a preview taster drive…

Opinion: Why 4x4 drivers should be a bit more Jake

Opinion: Why 4×4 drivers should be more Jake

Opinion: Why 4x4 drivers should be a bit more Jake

TV presenter Jake Humphrey has taken to Twitter to offer his help and 4×4 vehicle to anyone who needs it in the Norwich area.

The ex-F1 host tweeted this morning asking for people to let him know if they were aware of anyone who needed help.

He later posted a picture claiming to be ‘mid-rescue’.

It got me thinking. Why can’t more 4×4 drivers be a bit more Jake?

I’m happy that I live in a country where people are, pretty much, allowed to drive whatever they want. No one should feel pressured into owning a certain type of car, and I hate any kind of inverse snobbery triggered by someone driving a nice motor. I just find it slightly disappointing that so many choose to exercise their right to buy an SUV.

I see the appeal of an SUV. The space is great, if you need it, and the high-up driving position can be lovely. If you wish to see over hedges, perhaps, or feel superior to lesser motorists.

So, if you own a 4×4, I’m not going to make you feel like you need to justify your choice of transport. And if you do, you’re probably heading straight to the comments box to explain just how good it’s been in the snow we’re experiencing today.

And yes, generally 4x4s are better than most other cars on those rare occasions when it does snow. It doesn’t necessarily justify your decision to buy a Range Rover, though. Why not work from home, if you can, or buy a set of winter tyres for your car? (Side note: I’m driving a Subaru WRX STI this week, and it’s a perfect example of how much a four-wheel-drive vehicle on summer rubber can struggle in the snow).

Some of us absolutely have to get to our destinations, of course. Nurses and carers don’t have the option to take a snow day, for example; nor do farmers. So if you do have a 4×4 vehicle, and you haven’t got much on today, I urge you: why not do a good turn and help out those who need it?

4×4 Response is a national organisation made up of volunteers willing to help out when extreme weather hits the UK. That could be delivering supplies to isolated villages or providing transport to medical or care staff. When required (such as times with severe weather warnings, like today), volunteers are on standby to help with their 4x4s.

This is a brilliant way of giving you a mighty good argument the next time someone questions why you own a 4×4, but you don’t need to go as far as volunteering with a national organisation to help. Simply carrying a tow rope, a shovel, some warm clothes and perhaps a flask of tea could come in handy should you come across a stranded motorist.

When you’re driving home from work later today and you come across a stranded motorist, ask yourself: “What would Jake do?”.

Get your kit on

Get your kit on: if car manufacturers designed football kits

Get your kit on

“What if car brands designed football kits?” It’s an unlikely question, but it’s one posed by the team behind the Giffgaff Gameplan car insurance comparison site. Truth is, we get dozens of emails a week from companies hoping to gain some exposure in exchange for the results of a survey or a news story, and most are either discarded or greeted with a polite “no”. But we rather like the design work that’s gone into these football kits, so we’ve created a short gallery to showcase Giffgaff’s efforts.

Car manufacturers’ championship

Get your kit on

You’ll have to bear with us here, because Giffgaff’s approach isn’t straightforward. The company has based the Premier League table on the performance of each team based on their best associated car brand. The greater the number of sales, the further up the league table you go.

Looking at the fanbases of the teams, Giffgaff found an appropriate manufacturer using YouGov’s brand profiling tools, Google Trends and Google’s autocomplete feature. It’s not exactly a watertight approach, but it does mean that Aston Villa, Blackburn and Fulham are back in the Premier League. Sorry, Burnley, Brighton and Huddersfield fans.

18. Manchester United and Land Rover

Get your kit on

So, what of the top 10 in the car manufacturers’ championship? Well, the eagle-eyed among you will have noticed that Manchester United are languishing down in 18th place, but Giffgaff chose to include the Red Devils as “the aesthetics worked so well for the combination”. That’s as maybe, but United playing in green? Really?

Today, you’d associate the club with Chevrolet, but according to Giffgaff, “Land Rover’s combination of size, speed and power has helped it to become a reliable figure in the motor industry, much like Manchester United. The Red Devils dominated the English game in the 90s and early 2000s and continue to vie for honours today.” Reliable? Best not look at the results of those reliability surveys, then.

10. Leicester City and Citroen

Get your kit on

Citroen has been a partner of Arsenal Football Club since 2008, but Giffgaff has selected the French company for Leicester City as both companies “have suffered financial issues in recent times and managed to bounce back”. Hmm, we rather think the design work is better than the rationale.

9. West Ham United and Toyota

Get your kit on

“As the top car manufacturer in the world by size, Toyota dwarves West Ham by comparison, but the East London team’s reputation for tough football is recognised worldwide. Similarly, Toyota’s Hilux Invincible vehicle has developed a similar reputation, with the Land Cruiser suitable for a wide variety of terrain and conditions.”

Once again, we question the link, but we’re kind of committed now, like a Julian Dicks tackle. Sorry, but there’s Bobby Moore of this to come…

8. Aston Villa and Peugeot

Get your kit on

Villa fans rejoice, because you’re back in the Premier League, and you didn’t have to face the dreaded play-offs. But, wait, what’s this? Peugeot on the shirt? Surely that’s the preserve of Coventry City?

“Aston Villa and Peugeot have both suffered difficulties recently. Villa slipped into the Championship in 2016 after years in the top flight, while Peugeot has been through a restructuring plan as it strives to remain competitive in a tough marketplace,” says Giffgaff. Whatever, we like the cycling jersey-inspired shirt. Still shouts Coventry to us, mind.

As for Aston Villa, we can only think of MG Rover…

Get your kit on

See what we mean?

7. Chelsea and Mercedes-Benz

Get your kit on

You look at this shirt and think one thing: Germany. Which is rather apt, given that Giffgaff has chosen to associated Chelsea with Mercedes-Benz. “Chelsea’s big transfer funds and luxurious playing style correlate neatly with Mercedes-Benz,” says Giffgaff.

Luxurious playing style? Has Antonio Conte ever described Chelsea as playing luxurious football? And what exactly is luxurious football? Answers on the back of a discarded prawn sandwich wrapper.

6. Blackburn Rovers and Nissan

Get your kit on

“As one of the six teams that have won the Premier League, Blackburn has a history of success, but has now fallen down to the third tier. On the other hand, Nissan remains the fifth most popular car brand in the UK according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and we’re certain they could use some of the car brand’s good fortune,” says Giffgaff.

This is starting to look like a lost cause, like Alan Pardew clinging on to his job at West Brom, or a chicken on the way to a processing plant owned by Venky’s, the company in charge of Blackburn Rovers.

5. Arsenal and Audi

Get your kit on

“Arsenal and Audi are both well known for their penchant for luxury, with Audi’s stylish cars comparing favourably with the silky skills of Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry etc.” It’s that ‘luxury’ word again, although club legend Ian Wright might prefer ‘lazy’ and ‘lethargic’, given his comments following Arsenal’s defeat against Manchester City.

It’s a nice kit, but saying it was inspired by “black Audi car designs such as the A3 and A4” is tenuous in the extreme.

4. Man City and BMW

Get your kit on

This one bears a startling resemblance to the Crystal Palace shirt of the 70s and 80s. Alternatively, it has the whiff of the kit worn by the Allies in Escape to Victory. Either way, it’s a Michael Winner.

3. Southampton and Volkswagen

Get your kit on

One to file under: ‘It shouldn’t work, but it does’.

2. Everton and Vauxhall

Get your kit on

Everton fans may have given up hope of a top-six finish this season, but Giffgaff puts the Toffees in a Champions League position. The inspiration is – wait for it – based on the fact that “Vauxhall Astras are commonly used as police cars in the UK.” Not that this matters, because you’ve already clicked off in search of the latest meaningless awards ceremony or survey.

Call the cops: we’ve been accused of committing a crime against valuable time.

1. Liverpool and Ford

Get your kit on

The Merseyside Club is owned by American owners and America is the home of Ford. Which is enough to put Liverpool at the top of the league.

Read more:

The best 18-plate March 2018 new car offers

The best 18-plate new car deals

The best 18-plate March 2018 new car offersMarch is the perfect time to buy a car. With strong targets for dealers based on the new registration plate change, many manufacturers are offering tempting deals on new cars.

With PCP financing the majority of new car purchases, most of the offers we’ve found focus on deposit contributions with some as generous as £27,000.

Not all offers are quite so good, and not all are based on PCP deals. Read on if you want to grab a bargain this March…

Alfa Romeo Stelvio: up to £4,500 off

The best 18-plate March car offers: Alfa Romeo

Seeing as the Alfa Romeo Stelvio is still a fairly new car – and arguably one of the most desirable SUVs on the market – it’s surprising to see Alfa lopping money off it already. Buy a 210hp diesel Stelvio in Speciale guise on PCP and the manufacturer will stump up £3,000 towards the deposit, and an extra £1,000 just for taking a test-drive. The dealer will add an extra £500, meaning you can drive a Stelvio diesel for £465 per month following a £4,999 deposit.

Audi A6: £6,150 deposit contribution

There’s a new Audi A6 set to be revealed at next week’s Geneva Motor Show, so there are some cracking deals to be had on the outgoing model. Buy a 190hp 2.0-litre TDI Ultra S Line on a four-year PCP deal and Audi will contribute £6,150 towards a deposit. That leaves you with £5,333 to find for the rest of the deposit, followed by 47 monthly payments of £339.

We’re also due a new Audi A1, so it’s no surprise that there’s £900 to be had towards a current-gen 1.4 TFSI Sport Nav on a four-year PCP. Meanwhile, Audi’s offering £1,300 towards an A3 and £2,000 off a Q7.

BMW M6: massive savings and 0% finance

The BMW M6 is a few years old, and it risks being overshadowed by the M8 concept that’s expected to make its debut at Geneva next week. It doesn’t compare to the 911 in terms of driving dynamics, either, but don’t let us put you off. BMW’s offering a huge £27,305 deposit contribution towards a convertible, and £27,050 towards a Gran Coupe, along with zero percent interest. That leaves you to find a deposit of £12,774 or £15,632 respectively, followed by £629 or £559 a month for two years.

The interest-free PCP deal also stretches to the hybrid BMW i8, which’ll cost you £879 a month following a deposit of slightly more than £11,000 and a deposit contribution of £15,000 from BMW.

Citroen C4 Cactus: £1,900 deposit contribution

The best 18-plate March car offers: Citroen

The Citroen C4 has recently been facelifted, with its popular ‘Airbumps’ being scaled down in the process. This PCP offer appears to be on the pre-facelift version, however, so get your order in soon if you want to save money on the outgoing model. Splash out less than £500 on a deposit for a 1.2 Puretech Flair and Citroen will chuck £1,900 into the pot, leaving you with £400 a month to pay over two years. That’s a zero percent deal, with mileage limited to 6,000 a year.

Dacia Duster: £500 deposit contribution

Budget brand Dacia doesn’t really go big on offers, but we have found £500 towards a two-wheel-drive Duster Ambience on its website. That’s following a very reasonable customer deposit of £830, while monthly payments will set you back an equally reasonable £159 over three years.

DS 4: £2,800 deposit contribution

The DS 4 isn’t the best car from Citroen’s premium brand, but you could get some big discounts if you haggle hard this March. It’s offering a deposit contribution of £2,800 towards a 1.2 Puretech on PCP. You’ll need to stump up £305 a month for 36 months, while there’s an optional final payment of £7,244 if you wish to keep it at the end of the deal.

Fiat 500 Mirror: £139 a month on PCH

If you’re not looking to keep a car for a long period of time, personal contract hire (PCH) might work out cheaper than a PCP. Fiat’s new 500 Mirror special edition comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and costs just £139 a month. That’s following an initial rental of £3,058.

Ford Fiesta: 0% finance

The best 18-plate March car offers: Ford

Ford is offering zero percent finance across a number of its models, from the new Fiesta to the mighty Mustang. We’d be quite tempted by a PCP on the former, which is available in stylish three-door ST-Line guise for £145 a month over two years. You’ll need to pay a deposit of £5,401, while there’s an optional payment of £8,209 if you want to keep the car after two years.

Honda Civic: £750 off when you test drive

Would you buy a new car without test driving it? Doing so is increasingly common, apparently, but there’s an extra incentive in the form of £750 if you trial a new Civic. That means you can drive a 1.0-litre petrol for £219 a month over 36 months, following a deposit of £5,444. You can also take out five years’ servicing for £599.

Hyundai Santa Fe: £5,000 deposit contribution

We’re expecting to see a new Hyundai Santa Fe at Geneva, but that doesn’t make the current Santa Fe any less appealing. It’s one of the best value SUVs on the market, we reckon, and £5,000 deposit contribution from Hyundai means you can pick up a five-seat Santa Fe Premium for £222 a month. Admittedly, the near-£10,000 deposit does sting a tad…

Infiniti Q30: £2,250 deposit contribution

The Infiniti Q30 is a leftfield alternative to the Mercedes-Benz A-Class, BMW 1 Series and Audi A3 from Nissan’s premium brand. If you can afford a £4,412 deposit, Infiniti will add £2,250 to that, leaving you with £199 to pay every month for two years. That’s based on a 1.6 Luxe model, with an optional final payment of just under £7,000 should you wish to keep the car.

Jaguar XF: £4,160 deposit contribution

The best 18-plate March car offers: Jaguar

We rate the XF as a British rival to the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and BMW 5 Series. Opt for 180hp 2.0-litre diesel in R-Sport trim on a three-year PCP deal, and Jaguar will give you £4,160 towards a deposit. That’ll leave you with £359 a month to pay, and a £16,105 optional final payment. If you’d prefer a 3 Series-sized car, the Jaguar XE is available with a £3,790 deposit contribution.

Jeep Cherokee: £8,500 deposit contribution

The Jeep Cherokee Limited 2.2 Multijet has a list price of a hefty £40,085 – but that drops quite significantly by the time the manufacturer has provided £8,500 towards a finance deposit. Monthly payments work out at £349 over two years, with interest at 3.9% APR.

Kia Picanto and Rio: £2,000 off when you trade in your old car

Kia’s continues to offer its scrappage scheme, with £2,000 off a new Picanto or Rio available when you trade in your old car. That’s as long as it was registered before March 2011 and you’ve owned it for at least three months.

Lexus NX: £2,000 deposit contribution

Lexus is offering £2,000 towards a PCP deposit on a number of its models, including one of our favourites: the NX SUV. That results in a monthly payment of £339, provided you’re able to pay a deposit of more than £9,000.

Mazda MX-5: 0% finance when you pay a 50% deposit

The best 18-plate March car offers: Mazda

Got enough cash for half an MX-5? Mazda will offer you zero percent finance on the rest over three years. That means, for the very sweet 1.5 SE, you’ll pay just £269 per month.

Mercedes-Benz A-Class: £199 a month

Want a cheap way into owning a new Mercedes-Benz? This is about as cheap as it’ll get: a Mercedes-Benz A160 Sport for £199 a month on PCP or PCH. The former is with a £3,999 deposit; the latter with a £4,667 advanced rental. Both are over four years.

MG ZS: £179 a month and 0% APR

Frankly, there are better small SUVs than the MG ZS. Still a brand new, family-sized car for £179 and 0% APR is quite appealing – especially when it has a seven-year/80,000-mile warranty. Stump up a £3,255 deposit and the car will be yours after 60 months.

Mini Cooper: £259 a month

The best 18-plate March car offers: Mini

Paying £259 a month doesn’t seem to arduous when you get to drive a Mini Cooper every day. This effervescent hot hatch is fast enough to be fun, yet frugal enough to keep costs under control. The deal is spread over 48 months with no deposit required.

Mitsubishi: 0% finance on hire purchase

Monthly payments of £661.25 on an Outlander PHEV are steep, but think of the low, electric-enhanced running costs. And note this is a hire purchase deal, so you’ll own the car fully after 36 months. You’ll need a £10,000 deposit, to which the government adds a further £2,500 in the form of the Plug-In Car Grant. This big SUV only makes sense if you do lots of relatively short journeys, though.

Nissan Qashqai: 0% finance and £199 a month

The Qashqai is one of Britain’s most popular family cars – and for good reason. So a 0% finance offer on the sensible 110hp diesel in N-Connecta spec, plus a £1,000 deposit contribution from Nissan, sounds very, er… sensible. The catch? You’ll need to find £6,975 for the deposit.

Peugeot 208: £199 a month

A monthly payment of £199 may sound quite a lot for a 208 with a 1.2-litre engine, but this is Peugeot’s ‘Just Add Fuel’ deal, which includes insurance, tax and maintenance. As the name suggests, all you pay for on top is petrol. The car is Allure spec, which means a panoramic sunroof, matt-black alloys and a reversing camera.

Renaultsport Clio: 0% APR and £89 a month

The best 18-plate March car offers: Renault

The Renaultsport Clio has lived most of its life in the shadow of the brilliant Ford Fiesta ST. However, the ST is gone, and the new, three-cylinder one is still an unknown quantity. All of which makes a new Clio rather more tempting – especially with 0% finance and monthly payments of just £89 if you can stump up a hefty £8,307 deposit. Stretch to the Trophy version if you can.

Seat: download a voucher

To celebrate Seat’s success at the recent What Car? Car of the Year awards, the Spanish company is offering buyers the chance to download a voucher, which can be exchanged for an extra £1,000 off the price of a new car. The vouchers are valid until 6 March, so be quick. Seat is also offering a £1,500 deposit contribution on the Ibiza and Ateca.

Skoda Superb: £4,000 deposit contribution

The best 18-plate March car offers: Skoda

The Skoda Superb is the kind of car you could buy today and spend the rest of your life enjoying motoring bliss. It offers a huge amount of interior space and a generous level of equipment for some incredibly low prices. Buy a Superb Estate Sportline 2.0 TDI on PCP and Skoda will contribute £4,000 towards the deposit and chuck in two free services as part of the deal. You can pay as little as £439 for a deposit, with 47 monthly payments of £439. Be warned: come 2022, you won’t want to hand it back.

Smart Fortwo: £159 a month

The Smart Fortwo shares its platform with the Renault Twingo, but offers something completely different. This strikes us a good deal: Smart will pay the £1,028 deposit on a Fortwo Passion, leaving you to find £159 a month over four years. The optional final payment is £3,830. Upgrade to the Prime for an extra £9 a month.

Ssangyong Tivoli: £149 a month

We like the SsangYong Tivoli, which provides a generous level of kit as standard, with prices ranging from just £13,495 to £20,945. SsangYong is offering zero percent finance across the Tivoli range with monthly payments starting from £149 for the entry-level SE petrol. We’d spend a bit extra on an EX or ELX model, but you’ll need to find a larger deposit and a higher monthly payment.

Subaru Outback: £1,000 deposit contribution

Fancy a car capable of dealing with the current winter weather? Look no further than the Subaru Outback, which offers go-anywhere functionality and an impressive level of standard specification. Subaru will contribute £1,000 to the deposit on an Outback 2.5i SE Premium Lineartronic, leaving you to find a further £7,058. You’ll pay £379 a month for four years, with an optional final payment of £11,838. As offers go, it’s not the most compelling, which might explain why Subaru only managed to sell 475 Outbacks in 2017.

Suzuki Ignis: £159 a month

The best 18-plate March car offers: Suzuki

The Adventure is the latest trim level to be added to the Suzuki Ignis range and features styling upgrades to match its fun-size SUV characteristics. Side decals, a rear spoiler, side mouldings and front and rear skid plates are just part of its armoury. After a deposit of £2,216, you’ll pay 41 monthly payments of £159, with an optional final payment of £5,106. Alternatively, pay no deposit and £211.74 a month.

Toyota Aygo: £129 a month

If you squint really hard, the Toyota Aygo X-press looks like a miniature Yaris GRMN. Even if you don’t buy into this tenuous link to Toyota’s bonkers hot hatch, the Aygo X-press seems an appealing prospect. It’s loaded with 15-inch alloys, DAB radio, reversing camera, air conditioning and auto lights, not to mention those cosmetic upgrades. It’s yours for £129 after a £2,199 deposit.

Vauxhall Corsa: £149 a month

Vauxhall dealers will be eager to do a deal on the slow-selling Corsa, so be prepared to drive out of the showroom loaded with options and accessories… stopping just short of a cuddly toy. Right now, the Corsa Energy is available for 47 monthly payments of £149 after an initial rental of just £149. Not bad, for a thoroughly decent supermini with 16-inch alloy wheels, LED daytime running lights and heated windscreen, seats and steering wheel. You’ll be glad of those if this cold weather keeps up.

Volkswagen Tiguan: £2,000 deposit contribution

The best 18-plate March car offers: Volkswagen

Volkswagen sold nearly 700,000 Tiguans in 2017, making it the eighth best-selling car in the world. If you fancy following the crowd, Volkswagen is offering a £2,000 deposit contribution on the SE Nav 2.0 TDI. You’ll pay £265 a month for four years, with an optional payment of £10,997.10, should you decide to keep the car.

Volvo V40: £199 a month

The new XC60 and XC40 might be grabbing the headlines, but to dismiss the ageing V40 would be a mistake. It still cuts a mean figure in the five-door hatchback segment, and while its interior isn’t a patch on those you’d find in Volvo’s latest models, it does feel typically Swedish. You can drive away in a V40 T2 R-Design Nav Plus for just £199 a month after an initial rental of £2,500. You’re limited to 8,000 miles a year, but that should be enough if you’re buying a petrol-engined car.