Currently reading: Autocar confidential: London Taxi, electric Renault Twingo, VW Touareg, Opel's death knell for three-doors
Our reporters empty their notebooks to round up this week's gossip from across the automotive industry

This week's gossip from the automotive industry has news of why London's taxis are traditionally black, Renault's electric plan for the Twingo, the future of Volkswagen's updates, starting with the Tiguan, and the possible death of the three-door hatch.

As Geely's designers studied the history of the black cab ahead of redrawing the new model, they discovered that the iconic FX3 took on its distinctive colour after World War 2 because black was the cheapest paint at the time. As a result of its popularity, existing owners of taxis were prompted to repaint their cars to make it look like their vehicles were as modern — and soon every London taxi was black.

Read more: LEVC TX London black cab on sale from £55,599

Renault's Twingo is likely to be available as a traditional petrol or a pure-electric model in the future. The brand’s UK boss, Vincent Tourette, said the Twingo has been designed to accommodate either option. Ta lking about an electric Twingo, he added: “When demand is there, we will be ready.”

Read more: Renault Twingo GT and Dynamique S pricing revealed

The next-generation Volkswagen Touareg will be the first VW Group car to offer over-the-air updates that will allow customers to get upgrades for their car without having to take it to a dealer. The updates will initially be centred around diagnostics but could also bring benefits in economy and engine power. The second model to get the tech will be the next Audi Q7.

Read more: Next Volkswagen Touareg confirmed for 2017 reveal

Is the three-door hatch on the way out? Possibly, says Andreas Marx, director of product marketing at Opel, in reaction to an increasing number of car makers deleting the option. “In the UK, the uptake was quite good, but elsewhere less so,” he said. “We won’t follow the crowd and just delete it, but we will constantly monitor market demand.”

Read more: Best small car 2017: Ford Fiesta vs eight rivals


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WallMeerkat 29 August 2017

I thought 3 door hatchbacks

I thought 3 door hatchbacks were being renamed "coupes"

Such that when searching for cars by body style, rather than showing Mustangs and GT86s, the 'coupe' option now shows Vauxhall Astras and Leon diesels.

streaky 28 August 2017

Electric Twingo

If Renault go all electric with the Twingo I hope they make a better hash of it than Smart has with its related Fourfour which seems to be lacklustre and under-developed in every respect.  Still, Renault has good form with the Zoe.

Citytiger 28 August 2017

VW to offer updates over the air

Considering the damage they have made of a large proportion of vehicles (allegedly) that have had the dieselgate fix applied, is this really a good idea? 

The Apprentice 29 August 2017

Citytiger wrote:

Citytiger wrote:

Considering the damage they have made of a large proportion of vehicles (allegedly) that have had the dieselgate fix applied, is this really a good idea? 

Easier to delete the evidence if they have emission fiddles in the ECU though.