P-R of new cars

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Peugeot 208

From the all-new Porsche 911 Cabriolet to the new Renault Clio and Peugeot 208, here's P to R of the hottest new cars for 2012

Peugeot 208
On sale: June
Price: £10,500

With styling lifted from the sleek SR-1 concept car and a classy, modern interior, Peugeot’s latest supermini should cause quite a stir when it arrives next summer. Three and five-door versions will be available from launch, featuring different grilles and design features to help set them apart. Despite being 70mm shorter than its predecessor, as well as slightly lower, there’s more room inside than in the 207, with boot space expanded to 285 litres. The new model is also 110kg lighter in a bid to improve fuel economy. A choice of five diesel engines will be available, with outputs ranging from 89bhp to 108bhp. Even the most powerful version promises to emit less than 99g/km.

Hot pick for 2012
Steve Fowler, Editor-in-chief: “I’ve seen the 208 in the flesh and it’s as striking as it looks here. What blew me away, though, was the quality and space inside. The cabin is a match for Audi’s A1. Will it drive as well? We’ll find out early in 2012.”

Peugeot 3008 HYbrid4
On sale: January
Price: £26,995

Diesel hybrid provides a glimpse of the future. It can do 74mpg and emits less than 100g/km of CO2 – but it’s also four-wheel drive, thanks to an electric motor on the rear axle, and the electric motor is so efficient, you’ll spend most of your time in zero-emissions mode.

Read our first drive >>

Peugeot 508 RXH
On sale: June
Price: £30,000

New top-spec 508 SW is Peugeot’s answer to Audi’s Allroad models. The jacked-up 508 RXH has a 200bhp 2.0-litre HDi HYbrid4 drivetrain, with a diesel driving the front wheels and an electric motor the rears. All-electric mode helps it return 67.2mpg and emit only 109g/km.

Peugeot 508 Saloon HYbrid4
On sale: July
Price: £30,000 (est)

For a smoother ride than you’ll get from the rugged 508 RXH, the saloon will offer Peugeot’s HYbrid4 powertrain. A 2.0-litre diesel at the front and an electric motor at the rear give 200bhp. The 508 HYbrid4 should combine sub-100g/km emissions with strong pace.

Porsche 911 Cabriolet
On sale: March
Price: From £79,947

Hot on the heels of the coupe version comes the first in what will be a wide range of 911s. The Cabriolet arrives in March and will cost from £79,947 for the 350bhp 3.4-litre Carrera, rising to £89,740 for the range-topping 400bhp 3.8-litre Carrera S. It gets a fabric top, with a magnesium folding mechanism to save weight. Aerodynamics are improved by the smooth profile of the lowered roof and the shape has been engineered to exactly match the plunging roofline of the coupe when in place. It’s set to be the best-handling 911 Cabriolet yet, while both 3.4 and 3.8-litre versions can return 30mpg economy thanks to a stop-start system and improved aerodynamics.

Porsche Boxster
On sale: August
Price: £38,000 (est)

Poised to make its debut at the Detroit Motor Show, the new Boxster shares more technology than ever with the 911, with a wider and lighter chassis. The hotter S model will keep its 3.4-litre six-cylinder engine, but the base car gets a new 270bhp flat four.

Renault Clio
On sale: November
Price: £11,000 (est)

It’s set to be one of the best Renaults ever – a supermini that heads upmarket and offers buyers even more in the way of style and equipment. The new, fourth-generation Clio will get a fresh look with a dramatic V-shaped grille – and it will be available as a five-door only. Our illustration shows you how it could look, but expect finished models to get a hidden rear door handle – a trick Alfa Romeo has played to make its cars look sportier. Power will come from a range of new engines, including a 900cc three-cylinder turbo which promises 76mpg and 95g/km of CO2. A Renaultsport hot hatch, powered by a 1.6 turbo engine, is also likely.

Renault Clio Williams
On sale: September
Price: £20,000 (est)

One of the most revered hot hatches ever is the 1993 Renault Clio Williams – and its spiritual successor is just around the corner. To mark the end of production of the current Clio, Renault is joining forces with F1 team Williams to develop a new version. It’ll be based on the Renaultsport 200 and will be marked out by a new paintjob as well as retuned suspension, an upgraded engine and a very special sports cabin. It’s sure to become a collectors’ item.

Renault Fluence
On sale: April
Price: £17,850

The Fluence is the largest and most practical of Renault’s electric cars – it’s essentially a Megane-sized saloon. It comes with a 94bhp electric motor, has a range of around 115 miles and a top speed of 87mph. The price is lower than the Nissan Leaf, as its batteries are leased.

Read our first drive >>

Renault Megane facelift
On sale: May
Price: £16,000 (est)

A new Megane line-up is set to be revealed at March’s Geneva show before going on sale in the spring. It will feature Renault’s new family face – already seen on the revised Twingo – with a slimmer grille, a bigger Renault diamond on the bonnet and bolder headlights.

Renault Scenic
On sale: January
Price: £16,500 (est.)

Marking out the fresh Scenic are new bumpers and lights, plus LED daytime running lamps. But there are big changes under the skin, with new, more efficient engines. These include a 109bhp 1.6-litre dCi Energy diesel that claims 69mpg economy and 109g/km CO2 emissions.

Renault Twingo
On sale: February
Price: £9,000 (est)

Renault has responded to the launch of the new VW up! by giving its Twingo city car a dramatic facelift. There are bold new double headlights, a slimmer grille and split tail-lamps. A Renaultsport version of this fresh Twingo was also displayed at the car’s Frankfurt show debut.

Read our first drive >>

Renault Twizy
On sale: April
Price: £6,690

Renault’s electric runabout is powered by a 17bhp motor, giving a range of around 60 miles and a top speed of 50mph. It’ll be available in entry-level Urban trim for £6,690. Colour versions come with white bodywork and contrasting roof colours.

Read our first drive >>

Renault ZOE
On sale: August
Price: £15,000 (est)

The ZOE is Renault’s all-electric supermini. Using a 60kW motor producing 79bhp and 222Nm of torque, it has a range of around 100 miles. It’s also set to be one of the cheapest electric cars yet – it will cost about the same as the new Clio diesel.

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Chart position: 6

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