Renault Scenic

Dynamique TomTom dCi

130 Stop&Start

Renault Scenic
Renault Scenic boot
Renault Scenic
Renault Scenic interior front

THE latest Renault Scenic is the third generation of a model that introduced the motoring world to the compact people carrier in the 1990s.

As such the new model, launched as part of Renault's all-new Megane family featuring the Hatch, Coupe and Grand Scenic, has a lot to live up to.

This it attempts to do by building on the strengths that helped its predecessors become star performers among Europe's MPVs.

The Scenic sees improvements in space and comfort for all occupants. The driver's seat and steering wheel are more adaptable making it easier to find a comfortable saloon-like position behind the wheel.

There's a large windscreen offering excellent visibility and a dashboard design that is well set out and easy to see and use.

The cabin has 40 stowage areas sprinkled throughout the interior catering for the odds and sods a family invariably deposits in a motor over time.

The boot is also more roomy with 522-litres available - a 10 per cent increase on the previous model.

Soft-touch materials give the cabin a luxury feel while the individual rear seats have folding seatbacks or can be fully folded increasing load-carrying capacity.

The Scenic does a great job of insulating driver and passengers from the outside world as wind and road noise are treated as unwelcome guests thanks to some efficient sound-proofing.

The new Scenic looks anything but a people carrier as taut lines, distinctive rear lights and sporty front end give it a dynamism more usually associated with the saloon sector.

Quality materials are used and the body panel fit and finish is excellent.

There are many nice touches including parking sensors discreetly incorporated in the front and rear bumpers and a laser-welding technique that removes the need for any unsightly roof trimming.

There are two well-equipped models offered in the UK - the entry-level Expression and the Dynamique TomTom version I drove which is fitted with Renault's new integrated navigation system as well as an excellent sound system, air conditioning and cruise control operated via buttons on the steering wheel.

All versions of the car get intelligent front airbags which deploy in stages depending on how bad the impact is.

There are also front side airbags and curtain airbags that run the full length of the car. Renault also throw in stability control as standard.

The Scenic is surprisingly sparky when you press the pedal to the metal with improved ride and handling resulting from a new suspension design that was first seen on the Megane.

Suffice to say the body roll experienced on some people carriers is absent here.

Renault offers a choice of five engines for the Scenic - three petrol and two diesel - with the 1.6-litre dCi diesel under the bonnet of my vehicle proving a willing and economical performer offering low carbon dioxide emissions and good average fuel consumption in excess of 60mpg.

Included in the petrol line up is a 109bhp 1.6-litre unit, a 129bhp 1.4-litre turbo and a 138bhp 2.0-litre that comes with a CVT automatic gearbox.

It all adds up to an impressive package that should see the Scenic continue to attract families of all ages.

FAST FACTS

Renault Scenic Dynamique TomTom dCi 130 Stop&Start

Price:£20,900

Mechanical: 130bhp, 1,598cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via six-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 121mph

0-62mph: 10.3 seconds

Combined MPG: 64.2

Insurance Group: 21

C02 emissions: 115g/km

Bik rating: 13%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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