Renault Megane -

Used Car Review

Renault Megane, front static
Renault Megane, side static
Renault Megane, rear action
Renault Megane, dashboard
Renault Megane, boot
Renault Megane, rear seats

THE present Renault Megane is a family hatch in the traditional vein that's hugely accomplished and easy to live with while offering good performance from all but the lowest powered models.

It was launched in 2016, and is soon to be replaced by a brand new electric hatch bearing the same name.

But in the meantime, it's a car that would suit many families who have owned a Ford Focus or Vauxhall Astra and have not been lured by the boom in higher riding crossovers.

I've driven three or four of these Meganes over the past few years and have always been impressed by them.

One thing that does set them apart from the opposition is a higher level of equipment for the same money as other cars, but more of that later.

The Megane looks wide and purposeful from the front with lovely flowing lines down the sides, and the way it's built feels really right up there with the best in class. It's well finished inside and out and beautifully screwed together.

Petrol engines start with a 1.2 TCe turbo with 100 or 130bhp. The 100 is pretty slow, and no more economical than the 130, which, with a 0 to 60 miles an hour time of 10.2 seconds, is more than adequate.

Then comes a smooth and refined 1.3 TCe with 140bhp and this brings the sprint down to 9.4 seconds while still managing almost the same economy.

Another later version of this engine has no less than 160bhp, sprinting to 60 in 8.9 seconds and still managing a comparison figure of 54mpg.

Finally, the performance master of the range - apart from the RenaultSport models - is a 1.6 only available in upper trims, with an excellent 205bhp and a standard seven speed automatic gearbox bringing up 60 in just 6.8 seconds and still rated at 47mpg.

On the diesel front there are two offerings - a 1.5 dCi with 115bhp and a 1.6 with 130. Both of these are capable of 60mpg at very best and get to 60 in 11.1 and 9.6 seconds respectively.

The six speed gearbox is slick and quick to help quick progress, and the clutch is light - if rather high off the floor. There is also an automatic offered on most models, and it suits the car well.

The suspension setup gives flat and very quick roadholding with tremendous grip. It feels marvellous and hugely safe through every corner.

The downside in some is that the ride can get quite knobbly on rougher surfaces both in town and at higher speed on poor roads.

Upper models get a drive mode selector called Multi-Sense that gives the driver options like Neutral, Sport, Comfort, Individual and Eco modes.

This alters things like response to the accelerator, steering weight and even engine sound, but it doesn't have any control over the suspension.

Refinement is very good on the move, with very little wind or tyre noise, and hardly any bump-thump from the big wheels and low profile tyres.

Inside is a lovely simple dash with a large digital figure speedometer inside a full sweep rev counter, plus fuel and temperature gauges and readout for the trip computer.

Supportive seats hold in all the right places and there's decent rear legroom behind my six feet plus a good sized, well-shaped boot.

Main trim levels are Expression, Dynamique, GT-Line and Privilege but there are also numerous add on and special editions.

Mid-range Dynamique comes with heated mirrors, audio remote control, traction control, excellent seat and column adjustment, air conditioning, alarm and cruise control.

Pay about £10,950 for a '17 17-reg 1.3 TCe 130 Dynamique Nav, or £14,450 for a '19 19-reg 1.5 dCi GT Line.

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