Laguna, Espace and Modus are among the styles to be axed in 2012
Renovation may be a key word behind Renault's drastic reduction in its model range - a decision recently announced that means ending sales in the UK of a large number of its styles.
Among the cars axed are the Wind Roadster, Kangoo (only the car version, not the van), Espace, Grand Espace, Laguna Coupe, Laguna Sports Tourer, Laguna Saloon, Modus and Grand Modus. The cars will cease being sold from February.
That leaves only four styles from the old ward on sale: Clio, Twingo, Megane and Scenic - a dramatic retreat from the showroom choice it offered before.
The reason for getting rid of these models is that they are currently unprofitable in the UK. However, Renault won't end the production of these models abroad.
Important as well is the introduction of a new array of models in 2012, including the electric Fluence, and city cars Twizy and Zoe.
Scheduled to be launched in 2012 are also a revised Twingo, Scenic with 1.5 dCi 110 with Stop & Start and 1.2 TCe engine, Megane, Dacia Duster, and a replacement for Dacia Sandero. Even more important is the launch of an all-new Clio 4, which is expected to kickstart a repositioning of the Renault brand in the first places of the market.
Also in February Renault will start a new four-year/100k miles warranty, four year servicing and four year breakdown support service. These measures are clearly aimed to compete with the generous warranties that Kia, Hyundai and Vauxhall have been offering.
According to weekly automobile magazine Autocar, a number of dealers will also shut, including 23 manufacturer owned sites in urban areas. Comparing the 95,000 cars Renault sold in 2010 with the 63,000 in 2011, it's easy to see how dealers can be damaged by the sales downturn.
So, although shocking, is understandable that Renault UK would prefer to focus its energies on fresher and sportier models rather than on old styles that are not even the best of their class.
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12 January 2012, 02:16PM
The Modus should have been the perfect city car for the start of the 21st century yet it's lack of success seems to be a combination of wrong badge and more importantly wrong price... Renault still has (but for how long?) a good reputation for making practical small cars but why would you go spend 10k on a Modus?
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