Autocar April 14, 2021

Autocar is the car nut’s weekly fix, delivering you a unique mix of the latest news, opinion, features, first drives of new cars and in-depth road tests – all complemented by the best photography in the business. No other magazine covers the subject you love with such enthusiasm, insight and quality every week of the year. Autocar stands for the highest quality in car journalism – and is rewarded with access to the best new cars and the biggest news stories before any of the opposition which we share with you, our readers, every week.

United Kingdom
Haymarket Media Group Ltd
$6.82(Incl. tax)
$170.59(Incl. tax)
51 Issues

in this issue

1 min
why car buyers leave lockdown as winners

CAR DEALERS OPENED again this week off the back of a better-than-expected March for new car registrations, when close to 300,000 cars were still sold across the UK. That so many deals were done in March shows how successful online tech has been in keeping sales ticking over and how resilient dealers and the wider industry have been in adapting. Dealers expect a few busy weeks now, but because of that rise in online sales, click-and-collect and home-delivery fulfilment methods, there won’t be the same level of pent-up demand as last summer after the first lockdown, when sales really did grind to a halt. Before the pandemic, there were predictions that the car dealer could be an endangered species, with manufacturer direct sales to be done solely online in the future. But customers…

7 min
volkswagen project trinity to herald car-buying revolution

GOT A STORY? Email our news editor Volkswagen’s new flagship model, which it’s developing under the codename Project Trinity and is due in 2026, will spearhead the firm’s next generation of bespoke electric cars with a focus on offering long-range, semi-autonomous driving – and it will change the way that cars are bought. The new EV, which is still in the conceptual stage but set to take the form of a high-riding, sportback-style saloon, will be one of the first models to use the Volkswagen Group’s new Scalable Systems Platform (SSP). It will also introduce new digital technology and software systems to the brand’s line-up, along with upgraded battery technology offering a long range and fast charging. The Project Trinity model will be sold in largely standardised form, with only a handful of hardware…

1 min
buy now, pay extra later

You’ve just bought a new car. Great. Now it’s time to buy all the features you want. Welcome to the future. I suspect the sales model that Volkswagen is set to introduce for the Project Trinity will cause some consternation. The concept of paying extra to use features that are already built into the car will be anathema to many. You had better get used to it: Volkswagen may be one of the first to detail such a sales model, but it won’t be the last. When manufacturers talk about making cars more like smartphones, this is what they really mean. With a smartphone, you buy the handset and then pay extra for many of the apps, games and services you want to use on it. That’s the future of car buying that…

1 min
meb and beyond: which volkswagen group platforms are coming when?

MEB Launched 2020 Vehicles VW ID 3, VW ID 4, Skoda Enyaq iV, Cupra Born The Volkswagen Group’s first bespoke electric car architecture is key to its ambitious EV sales targets. It’s being used as the basis for mainstream EVs from Volkswagen, Seat, Cupra, Skoda and Audi. J1 Launched 2020 Vehicles Porsche Taycan, Audi E-tron GT The J1 platform is shared by Porsche and Audi and is used for the highly regarded Taycan. Its long-term future is unconfirmed, but it will likely be retained in the medium term for performance-focused Volkswagen Group models. PPE Launches 2022 Likely vehicles Porsche Macan, Audi Q6 E-tron, new Audi A5-size coupé Another Audi and Porsche joint development, the PPE platform is designed for larger, premium models. It’s capable of 800V fast-charging and accommodating bigger batteries. SSP Launches 2024 Likely vehicles Audi…

3 min
citroën covers all bases with c5x

Citroën is hoping to “breathe more life” into the large car market its unconventional new flagship model, the CX5. With a silhouette that draws on SUV, estate and saloon styling cues, the C5X straddles several core market segments. It’s set to arrive in the UK early next year with a choice of turbo petrol and plug-in hybrid powertrains, while prioritising long-distance refinement and ushering in a raft of features and systems new to the brand. The model’s X suffix refers to its market positioning at “the crossroad of customers’ needs”, according to Citroën, as it offers the raised ride height of an SUV, the extended rear cabin of an estate car and the “elegance” of a saloon. Certain styling cues – most notably the LED headlight designs – are inspired by the radical CXperience…

3 min
dealers open doors as car sales rise at last

NEW CAR REGISTRATIONS have risen for the first time since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, with 283,964 new vehicles hitting UK roads in March – 29,280 more than in the same period in 2020. This first sign of growth is positive news for the industry, albeit with the caveat that sales tumbled by 44.4% in March last year as the country entered its first lockdown. Dealerships reopened on Monday for the first time since early January, when all non-essential retailers were forced to close their doors once again in response to an alarming rise in infections. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders warned that the latest figures are still 36.9% down on the 10-year March average and that the shortfall in the first quarter of this year has already cost the…