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.
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.”
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.
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.”