Scenic As Part Of The Scenery

RENAULT is making cars with more interesting designs. So that at least in the looks department it might be easier to do battle with the competition.

As a compact MPV, the five-seater adopts some of the looks of an SUV, scaled down to deliver more accessible proportions.

Renault Scenic
Pretty eyes helps you see far ahead.

The Scenic now sits on wider tracks and a longer wheelbase, and rides on stylish 20” rims inspired by the R-Space concept car. The dual tone finish gives it a more compact feel, the black top contrasting nicely with the honey yellow body of the test drive car.

The C-shaped LED day time running lights, first seen in the Kadjar, gives the front a sharper look, and the rear lights give it a distinctive appearance.

Renault Scenic
A good view of your environment with all that glass. Best not to throw stones though.

With glass all around, and not forgetting the moonroof, the Scenic offers more space than it appears to have. Once inside this Privilege variant, it is comfortable in front, and the glass does let in lots of light. But that’s not going to help if you’re tall and relegated to the back.

While the Scenic affords you a good view of the scenery, it’s also easy on the eye, especially in front. With a large display and with the gear shift mounted on the dash, it gives the impression of greater roominess. Also that old-world sensation of driving a van.

Renault Scenic
Loads of boot space that can be configured in a number of ways.

A sliding centre armrest is among the various storage options available in the Scenic, which makes it a good family ride to carry the needful paraphernalia for a long road journey. The foldable rear seats are also options for more space. And they can be conveniently flopped down by a touch on the 8.7” centre console or in  the luggage compartment.

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Renault Scenic
Hard to miss the big display, even if it does take some getting used to.

The multimedia system offers good connectivity, with Bluetooth bringing your mobile phone into the cabin. Four USB ports allow virtually everyone to keep their devices charged and ready for action.

The centre console does feel like it’s been taken from a left-hand-drive model. The information about the gears is on the passenger’s side of the shifter, making it hard to see where it’s at; not that you’re going to be looking at it much, but it just seems like an afterthought.

Renault Scenic
For those who got lucky while parking during the driving test, let the Scenic park itself for you.

On the go, the Scenic is functionally smooth, but nowhere near as exciting as its colour or groovy lines. It lacks the immediacy of a diesel performer, but it is quite mingy with the fuel.

The turbocharged 1.5-litre diesel engine does what it’s able to in conjunction with the 7-speed gearbox. The larger tyres may not help. And a springy steering tends to offer a little battle of wills initially, but it’s generally a colourless drive.

This is not going to be nippiest set of wheels around, but it is packed with other features — handsfree auto parking, blind spot monitoring and hill start assist, e.g. —  that make it a worthwhile consideration.


Styling: 8/10

Interior: 6.7/10

Ride: 5.5/10

Handling: 6/10

Power: 5/10

Overall: 6.5/10

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Engine: Direct injection with Common Rail, turbocharged

Capacity: 1,461cc

Max Power: 82kW@4,000rpm

Max Torque: 260Nm@1,750rpm

Transmission: 7-speed

Efficiency: 4L/100km

VES Band: A2

0-100kmh: 12.4 seconds

Top Speed: 184kmh

Retail price: *$115,999

Please reconfirm price with dealer.

Read more STORM car reviews HERE.

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