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Volkswagen Up!

Volkswagen Up!

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Volkswagen is offering free insurance on four of its models when bought through the firm’s own Personal Contract Purchase (PCP) scheme.

One year’s free insurance is available to buyers of most Up, Polo, Beetle and Beetle Cabriolet models when they sign up to a three-year, 30,000-mile finance agreement.

MG's new supermini, the MG3, will reach showrooms later this year

MG's new supermini, the MG3, will reach showrooms later this year

Lower-powered models are available with free insurance to people over 21, while those with more power are being restricted to those over 25. Full details are listed at the website www.insurewithvolkswagen.co.uk.

The free year’s insurance counts towards future no-claims discount, so new drivers over 21 can benefit in two ways, with one year of driving behind them by the time they need to pay for insurance.

All models in the promotion are also available with a three-year service plan at a cost of £199, reducing the financial impact of maintenance to much lower levels.

The deals are available now at all Volkswagen centres nationwide.

Ahead of its launch later this year MG has confirmed pricing and specification for its MG3 supermini, with even the most expensive model priced at only £9,999.

All models are fitted with LED front lights, electronic hill hold and all but the entry model featuring a high quality DAB audio system. On the safety front there are six airbags, electronic stability control, corner brake control and traction control.

At the top of the range is the MG3 3STYLE with premium 16” “Diamond” alloy wheel and a sports body styling pack that includes the rear boot spoiler and side sill extensions. Standard high-tech convenience features include cruise control, automatic lights and windscreen wipers and reverse parking sensors, all for only £9,999.

The mid-range MG3 3FORM available for £9,299 includes air conditioning, DAB radio, Bluetooth and audio streaming, leather MG-design steering wheel with red stitching and steering wheel audio controls all as standard, above the entry model specification.

For those customers who want top of the range looks but find the high level of equipment in a 3FORM enough, then there is the MG3 3FORM SPORT. This includes all the features of the mid-range 3FORM with the sports body styling pack and 16” “Carousel” alloy wheels at £9,549.

The entry model MG3 3TIME costs £8,399 and features a CD player with MP3 compatibility and Aux-in facility in addition to all the standard features on all MG3s.

All models are powered by a 106PS petrol engine with a five speed manual gearbox. Top speed is 108mph and 0-62mph takes 10.9 seconds, while the official combined fuel consumption figure is 48.7mpg with CO2 emissions of 136g/km.

The radical new C4 Picasso has arrived in dealerships across the UK, priced from £17,500 on the road.

As well as the amazing new styling that sets it apart from any other MPV, the Picasso is also based on Peugeot-Citroen’s new mid-size Efficient Modular Platform (EMP2) chassis, and is the first car from the group to use it.

The chassis contributes to a weight loss of up to 140kg compared to its predecessor, helping to improve driving dynamics and efficiency. It now weighs the same as the smaller C3 Picasso.

Efficiency is so far improved that the new C4 Picasso becomes the first conventional internal combustion-powered compact MPV to dip below the 100g/km free road tax threshold in conjunction with fuel consumption of up to 74.3mpg. Buyers shouldn’t expect this figure in the real world though.

The car is targeted at families both young and old, where space, running costs and safety are the priorities. A ‘loft-style’ interior boasts a large amount of glass area for an exceptionally light and airy feel. A panoramic windscreen is standard, while a large sunroof is optional.

The rear bench seat, complete with Isofix child seat mounts, can slide forwards to expand the boot from its normal 537 litres to 630 litres. The tailgate operates in a ‘clamshell’ design that means it can be closed even when loads are protruding beyond the load aperture. As long as the baggage will squash backwards, the boot will close.

At 4cm shorter and with a 4cm lower roof line, the new Picasso is more compact than the model it replaces. However, the wheelbase is 6cm longer than before and that affords an extra 2cm of rear legroom. A practical touch is the distribution of three 12-volt power sockets around the car from which devices can be charged.

The entry-level £17,500 model is a VTR grade car with a 118bhp 1.6-litre VTi petrol. An extra £695 buys an 89bhp diesel. The most popular model is likely to be the e-HDi 115 VTR+, at £20,255.