Weekly round-up: Storm Doris hits, we drive the new BMW 5 Series and new Fiesta ST revealed

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Author: | Updated: 24 Feb 2017 04:30

Well Storm Doris battered the UK this week blowing all other news out of the water. Disrupting travel with fallen trees, debris and even a flying trampoline, conditions meant slow-going driving for many.

Top left clockwise: new Alfa Romeo Stelvio, New BMW 5 Series, Storm Doris hits and Citroen C4 the marmite car

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The roads might have been a mess but, as ever, the car industry in general keeps plodding on. So, here’s a reminder of what’s been occurring over the last seven days…

With the king of the car shows – Geneva – just around the corner, manufacturers have been busy giving us a taster of what we can expect to see. Hyundai got in first this week, with a rather shadowy picture of its new i30 Wagon. If you like the look of the standard hatchback we recently reviewed, but need more boot space, this could be the car for you.

Hyundai gave us a (very vague) look at the new i30 Wagon.

Also this week: SMMT promotes low-emission vehicles in London

Next up it was Ford. The manufacturer revealed the new supermini last year, but we’ve had to wait until today to see the sporting version in its full glory. Featuring a  1.5-litre EcoBoost engine tuned to just under 200bhp, hot hatch fans can be safe in the knowledge that the ST hasn’t become any less potent with age.

The 2017 Ford Fiesta ST has officially been unveiled.

The “teaser of the week” however, has to go to Range Rover. Jaguar Land Rover has profited massively from its latest SUVs such as the Evoque and F-Pace. Adding another one to its line-up, a coupe-shaped SUV called the Velar is due to be unveiled in Geneva, and we’ve been treated to a sneak peak of it.

Range Rover Velar

Positioned between the Evoque and the Range Rover Sport, Range Rover says the Velar will “exemplify elegant simplicity” and have all the hallmarks that have made the brand such a successful one in recent years.

SUVs like this might be successful, but they are a type of car that often splits opinion; just like at the Evoque Convertible. This got us thinking about cars that people love and loathe in equal measure. Here’s our top five marmite motors…

It might be popular, but the Evoque Convertible certainly divides opinion like few cars can

Also this week: Insurance proving a hindrance for low-emission vehicles

Other than the pre-launch previews, it’s been a rather quiet week on the news front. We haven’t been resting on our laurels though, with our road testers Alisdair Suttie and Phil Huff bringing you two reviews this week.

First off, Al got behind the wheel of the tech-filled 2017 BMW 5 Series, and it’s certainly upped its game. It was already one of the very best executive saloons, but thanks to engine advancements and a fabulous interior, it’s now surely one of the best.

Al Suttie has been getting to grips with the new 5 Series

Out in Spain, Phil’s been trying out an updated version of Seat’s popular Leon. On the surface, things don’t look too different, but a host of updates should keep it competitive for some time to come yet.

Over in Italy, Alfa Romeo has officially handed its Stelvio to some eager road testers ahead of its European launch. We saw it in the flesh back at the LA Motor Show, but this is the first time it’s been seen on this side of the Atlantic. UK release date and prices are still to be confirmed, but we can’t wait to see what it’s like…

The Alfa Romeo Stelvio has finally landed on European soil.

In other continental news, French company PSA’s plans to buy out General Motors’ European Opel-Vauxhall division seems to be getting closer. With the prime minister holding talks with Peugeot bosses, speculation has been rife.

There may be a new Insignia on the way, but what will happen if PSA buys Vauxhall?

Vauxhall employs around 4,500 people at its UK plants and with the future of the famed Griffin badge looking uncertain, it’s no wonder the government wants some reassurance from PSA. While the deal is in the making, we had a look at what the merger could mean.

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