Excel spreadsheets are depressing at the best of times. The misery is compounded when the spreadsheet details the number of cars killed by scrappage.
Cast your mind back to 2009, when the government-backed scrappage scheme incentivised motorists to scrap their old cars. A total of 392,227 cars were part-exchanged for new motors, with punters given a minimum £2,000 discount, regardless of the car's condition. There were a few terms and conditions, but if the car had an MOT, it was worth £2k.
Cutting a long story short, scrappage removed thousands of roadworthy cars from our streets. Some of these cars were rare, exotic and desirable. Some were even worth more than the £2,000 scrappage discount.
There are rumours that the government will launch a new scrappage scheme to kickstart the new car industry following the coronavirus lockdown. PetrolBlog has strong views on this. Stay tuned for these.
Victims of scrappage: Renault
In the meantime, let us consider the French cars that were lost to the scrappage scheme of 2009. Starting with Renault.
It's worth noting that the figures might not be entirely accurate. The list of cars, which was released following a Freedom of Information request, contains a few red herrings. Take the ‘Renault Magabe’, which sounds particularly unpleasant. Or the ‘Renault Mears’, which is a great name for a rugged outdoor vehicle with a penchant for bear poo.
Read on to discover the Renault cars that were lost in the great scrappage swindle of 2009.
Renault 18: 1 scrapped
The 2009 scrappage scheme removed one Renault 18 from the road. Today, there are just 25 left on the roads of Britain, with a further 78 registered as SORN.
Renault GTA: 1 scrapped
Wait, what? Somebody scrapped a Renault GTA? Regardless of the condition, there would have been some rare and valuable parts that could have been used to keep another GTA alive. Madness.
Renault Modus: 1 scrapped
This has to be mistake, because the Modus wouldn't have been eligible for the scrappage scheme. Cars had to be at least ten years old, but the Modus was launched in 2004. Three years after the scrappage scheme, the Modus was pulled from UK sale, along with the Espace, Kangoo, Laguna and Wind.
Renault Fuego: 2 scrapped
Two examples of the Renault Fuego were scrapped, including one Fuego Turbo. For some context, 30 Ford Capris were killed in action, with just one Opel Manta falling victim to the scheme.
Renault Avantime: 3 scrapped
This is an odd one, because you'd like to believe that the Renault Avantime is owned and driven by sensible and reasoned individuals. Unfortunately, three were scrapped in the name of a soulless new car.
Renault 4: 5 scrapped
Anything Top Gear can do, scrappage can do better. Or something.
Renault 9: 10 scrapped
The Renault 9 was European Car of the Year in 1982, beating the Opel Ascona and Volkswagen Polo into second and third place respectively. That didn't stop ten owners taking advantage of the scrappage discount.
Renault Twingo: 13 scrapped
This is a bit of an odd one, because the Mk2 Renault Twingo had only been on sale for two years when the scrappage scheme was introduced. Does this mean that 13 Mk1 Renault Twingos were scrapped? Shocking.
Renault 25: 32 scrapped
One of the many problems with the 2009 scrappage scheme was that the cars had to be scrapped, with no opportunity to remove rare or valuable parts. Which means that 32 Renault 25 interiors have been lost forever.
Renault 11: 78 scrapped
There are 66 examples of the Renault 11 on the road today. A dozen more than that were victims of the scrappage scheme.
Renault Master: 83 scrapped
The scrappage scheme does have some plus points. Removing a tired diesel van from the road is a good thing, especially if it's exchanged for a cleaner alternative.
Renault Safrane: 83 scrapped
The scrappage scheme wasn't kind to the Renault Safrane. Thank goodness the PetrolBlog Safrane survived the cull.
Renault 21: 84 scrapped
As the French Car Critical List revealed, there are 448 Renault 21s registered as SORN in the UK. Will they survive a scrappage scheme in 2020?
Renault Trafic: 105 scrapped
PetrolBlog doesn't do vans, but if it did, the van would look something like the Renault Trafic. A total of 105 were crushed as part of the scrappage scheme.
Renault Extra: 107 scrapped
The Renault Extra – or Express as it was sold in its domestic market and some other countries – is a rare sight in the UK. Thankfully, the Express is still relatively common in France.
Renault Kangoo: 335 scrapped
Look at these people having fun with their Renault Kangoo. They don't look like one of the 335 people who would scrap their car in return for a £2,000 pay cheque.
Renault Espace/Grand Espace: 524 scrapped
It's obvious that the lady in this Mk1 Renault Espace would do anything to be anywhere other than this airfield. Maybe even a Hyundai dealer to collect a £2,000 discount.
Renault 19/Chamade: 557 scrapped
It won't be long before the Renault 19 is an endangered species in the UK. The 2009 scrappage scheme didn't help its cause.
Renault 5: 632 scrapped
Here we see a couple enjoying a romantic drink while contemplating life with a base-spec Hyundai i10. The Renault 5 Prima is facing the chop. The other guy can't watch.
Renault Megane Scenic/Scenic: 1,465 scrapped
The Renault Megane Scenic was a pioneer in the small MPV segment. Nearly 1,500 were lost to the scrappage scheme.
Renault Laguna: 2,884 scrapped
The Mk2 Renault Laguna survived the cull by virtue of being introduced in 2001, making it ineligible for the scheme. This means we lost 2,884 Mk1 Lagunas. Sad times.
Renault Megane: 5,995 scrapped
Whichever way you look at it, that's a staggering number of scrapped cars. How many of the Renault Megane hatchbacks, coupes, saloons and convertibles still had plenty of life to give?
Renault Clio: 14,033 scrapped
Two examples of the Renault Clio Williams were victims of scrappage. This highlights the madness of the scheme, because the cars were likely to be worth more in parts. Alternatively, they could have been restored to former glory. Just look at Clio Williams values today to see what a shortsighted decision it was to scrap them.
Please remember, the figures aren't entirely accurate, but they provide a good overview of the Renault cars scrapped as part of the 2009 scrappage scheme. Coming next: Peugeot and Citroën.