Qu'est ce que c'est?
It's the facelifted Renault Mgane range. Don't worry, we forgot the Mgane existed too...
The Mgane's had a general spruce-up rather than anything particularly wild, but most noticeable is the car's new front end. If you think you've seen it before you aren't wrong - it's very similar to the new corporate look found on the Clio and Captur.
There's also a slightly confusing new trim ladder which starts with the Expression+, goes through something called the Knight Edition, and rounds off with the Dynamique TomTom and GT-Line TomTom. More than ever, we find ourselves missing the old RN, RL and RT trims from the 90s...
What powers it?
That depends which model you opt for, but the choice is fairly wide. The entry-level engine is a 1.6-litre VVT petrol, but unless you're 100 percent committed to a budget model you're better off going for the newer 1.2 TCe 115, the turbocharged petrol lump. A more powerful 130 PS TCe is also available, as are 1.5 and 2-litre dCi diesels.
These get either manual or twin-clutch automatic transmissions, and typically you can expect the newer and more powerful powerplants to appear in the higher trim levels.
Sitting on its own at the top and in Coupe form only is the RenaultSport 265. It shouldn't need much introduction - the two-litre, turbocharged hot hatch is hilarious fun and very fast indeed.
In addition to the new corporate chops and confusing trim lines, there's a boost in equipment. To quote Renault's press release, Automatic dual zone climate control is now standard on Dynamique TomTom, LED daytime running lights appear on Expression+ and lastly, R-Link is now optional on GT-Line TomTom. So now you know.
There's also a huge range of option packs to further confuse the new car buyer. Renault no doubt has a glossy brochure you can refer to for the full details.
How much do I have to pay?
A basic Expression+ hatchback with the 1.6 petrol starts at 16,745. The equivalent Sport Tourer (estate) is a grand more, while 900 over the hatch buys a Coupe in Knight Edition trim with the same petrol lump.
Prices rise all the way to 26,925 for the Renaultsport. You'll pay less for many interim models though - Renault has sliced 1,200 off the cost of every diesel, 850 from the automatic-equipped dCi 110 and 275 from the 1.2 TCe 115. On the Renaultsport, the desirable Cup pack will set you back another 1,350.
Dozens. It wouldn't be right not to mention the VW Golf and Ford Focus - the former is the classier and more expensive option, the latter the default class choice and similarly priced to the Renault, but hampered by a thimble-sized boot.
Assuming you're looking at the Mgane because those two bore you to tears, we'd also point you in the direction of the SEAT Leon, Honda Civic and excellent new Peugeot 308. The Pug in particular is well worth a look.
In a line:
Nip/tuck and price cuts inject some joie de vivre into ageing hatch.