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post #9 of (permalink) Old 31st July 2007
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The current line-up only offers the 2.0 VVT 135 petrol engine, unless you go for the petrol GT, when you can have the 2.0 turbo 205.

Lots of choices of diesel engines, though while the entry level models can have any engines, you can't spec one of the higher trim levels with anything less than the dCi 150 (or 140 if you're having an auto box.) The diesel version of the GT has the 175bhp 2.0 dCi.

Things have changed, mind you. Back when I got mine, you could have a 1.9dCi 130 Initiale, otherwise I wouldn't be driving one . I thought the lower powered turbo (165bhp?) petrol made it through to the phase II for a while too, but I could be wrong.

Cosmetically, the look of the new one has grown on me. I hated it at first, and I'm still not a big fan of the chrome moustache, but I suppose they had to stop it from being identical to the Megane. I prefer the interior on the Phase II as well, even though the only significant changes are to the stereo area and the centre armrest/console. You'll love the electronic parking brake once you get the hang of it, though it can be annoying at first.

'Navigation' models seem to be popular on the phase II, though I'm not sure how the sat-nav compares with the bluetooth system that you get on the Initiale. If you're looking around a dealer forecourt, then phase II models with sat-nav can instantly be distinguished by the shark's fin on the roof. Some of the phase I's that had the shark's fin only had it as the antenna for the pre-wired phone kit, so it wasn't a useful indicator.

In truth, I get the feeling that the phase II is being used to wind-down production of some old engines (1.9 dCi) and as a testbed for some of the newer ones (2.0 dCi.) The car may well end up being remembered as such, and having had such a very short lifespan before the introduction of the Laguna III, it may turn out to either be highly collectable (yeah, right) or (far more likely) a complete white elephant.

I expect to see second-hand prices drop through the floor when the Lag III comes out, along with some ludicrous discounts on the remaining stock at dealers. Now is not the right time to be thinking about buying a phase II. If you can't wait until the Lag III comes out, then a phase I will probably be a safer investment.
Currently in Horatio's garage:
2010 Laguna III Initiale.
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