Round-Up: V-Class facelift, Top-spec Octavia, Most cars ‘stolen without keys’

Facelifted V-Class revealed

V-class facelift

Mercedes-Benz has revealed a facelifted version of its passenger-carrying version of its V-Class.

The V-Class is based on the Vito van and exterior changes include a new front bumper and grille design, while the interior has been tweaked to follow the style of the rest of the passenger car range of vehicles.

The V-Class also introduces a new engine to the range; a 2.1-litre diesel unit that produces 239hp, emits 154g/km of CO2 and returns 47.9mpg.

The facelifted model is set to go on sale in February, while Mercedes said it will showcase a “near series-study” electric vehicle concept at the Geneva motor show in March.

Top-spec Octavia announced

OctaviavRSChallenge

Skoda has released a special-edition version of its Octavia VRS model.

Called the VRS Challenge, the vehicle adds £4,535 worth of extra equipment for £2,460 compared with the standard model.

The extra kit includes: 19-inch black alloy wheels, a sports exhaust with black trim, black folding, auto-dimming door mirrors and black vRS badging, Alcantara vRS seats that are electronically adjustable and heated for the driver and front-seat passenger,  a colour trip computer with lap timer and keyless entry and start.

It is priced from £30,08 (hatch) and £31,285 (estate) and is available to order now.

Majority of vehicles ‘stolen without keys’

vehicle thefts

The vast majority of vehicles stolen and then recovered were stolen without the use of the original key last year, tracking company Tracker has claimed.

It said 88% of vehicles it recovered last year were stolen without a key an increase on last year’s figure of 80% and 2016’s figure of 66%.

“Investing in a tracking device won’t stop a car being stolen, but it can significantly increase the chances of police locating it and returning it to the rightful owner,” claimed Clive Wain, head of police liaison at the firm. “This, plus added vigilance, dramatically contributes to keeping thieves at bay.”