Esteemed UK automobile media, AutoExpress recently highlighted that the Renault Megane faces an uncertain future due to EVs being the focus of most automobile manufacturers. Slowly and steadily the cars that we have come to love and know are slowly being phased off, and this led us to think, is it actually the focus on EVs that are making these cars extinct? Or is it the lust for SUVs and SUV looking vehicles that are the main problem? Whatever it is, we don't want the Megane to go, cause that means no Megane RS Trophy Cup cars anymore.
The Renault Megane has been a household name across Europe since 1995, but declining sales has made Renault rethink the budget for future production of these family-friendly hatchback cars. According to the written piece by AE, Laurens van den Acker, Renault's design chief told the publication that the company is looking to reassign the development cost of the Megane as it can be better used somewhere else. "Inevitably, once we're starting to add a range of EVs to our line-up, some of the other vehicles are going to have to go because we just can't afford to develop all of this at the same time," said van den Acker. "The Megane is in a segment that's increasingly under pressure. You have to put your money where the future of the market is."
Now, to decide whether SUVs and SUV looking things are the main problem, we got to look at what the main infiltrators are in a market where small hatchback rules. If we look at some of these charts from Focus2Move.com a specialized automotive industry consulting firm, it confirms our suspicion that SUVs are starting to infiltrate the top 3 spots in Europe's best selling car chart. Except for the Golf which is just loved due to its lineage and efficient tech-driven concept, it seems that people in Europe prefer to purchase either tiny cars, i.e., the Renault Clio or SUVs, i.e. VW's Tiguan.
Actually, the only C-Segment hatchback that is in the top 10 of these charts is the Golf with the rest being filled up by either SUVs or B-segment cars. B-Segment cars have always been around in the top 10 charts because they are the cheapest and offer the best fuel economy, but then in recent years, the SUV which never really belonged in the top 10 have started to inch up closer to the top of these charts, confirming our suspicions.
So is it really the EVs that are killing the C-Segment cars or in this case the Megane? Or is it more of a smokescreen for bad sales? Yes and no because yes things are moving the EV way, but we really can't see that happening all too quickly. There is a future war happening at the moment without it even taking place. Every automotive manufacturer is fighting for future car sales space as some have already realised that they have lost in the present - so why try to fight it any further. So this is what Renault is doing, fighting to be top in the future, not the present.
We don't even need to look as far as Europe because in Malaysia, we can already see the examples of the suvpocalypse. Renault Malaysia are selling SUVs with the Megane RS really only as a branding exercise. We used to have trophy cars, now we are getting Renault Captur trophy instead. Mazda Malaysia is also all about SUVs and doesn't really concentrate on any of their low to the ground cars.
So, is it the EVs? or the SUV that is killing off the beloved Megane? You decide!