Renault Scenic E-Tech Review 2024 | Is It Worth It ??
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Renault Scenic E-Tech Review 2024

The buzz around electric vehicles (EVs) in the U.K. is growing louder by the day, and amidst this crescendo, Renault throws its hat into the ring with the Renault Scenic E Tech Electric. Not merely content to join the EV ranks, this car aims to blur the lines between traditional categories, asserting itself not just as a great electric vehicle but as a great vehicle, period.

A Category of Its Own

Renault Scenic E-Tech
renault scenic e-tech electric 2024

Launched with the heritage of the original Scenic, which snagged a European Car of the Year award back in 1996, Renault’s latest venture seems to dodge straightforward classification. Is it an MPV like its ancestor? Or has it evolved into an electric SUV to keep pace with modern tastes? Renault’s stance is intriguing: they’re not boxing it into any specific category, leaving it to you, the driver, to define what the Scenic E-Tech Electric means to you.

Competing Across the Spectrum

Renault’s confidence in the Scenic E-Tech Electric is palpable. They’re positioning it as a formidable contender not only against EV stalwarts like the Kia e-Niro, Peugeot e-3008, and even the Tesla Model Y but also against conventional powerhouses such as the Nissan Qashqai and Skoda Karoq.

Powering Your Journey: Battery Insights

Renault Scenic E-Tech
Renault Scenic E-tech electric

Renault offers two battery options to tailor your Scenic E-Tech experience: a 60kWh and an 87kWh variant. The entry-level option mirrors the top-tier Mégane’s capacity but kicks things up a notch with its Nickel Manganese Cobalt (NMC) cell chemistry, boasting a 6% increase in energy density. This advancement not only enhances performance but also contributes to sustainability by making the battery pack partially serviceable – a forward-thinking approach evident in the option to replace individual modules.

  • Range Revelations: The standard model promises an impressive 260-mile range, while the larger 87kWh battery extends this to 379 miles according to the WLTP cycle, outpacing rivals like the Skoda Enyaq and even the Tesla Model Y.

Renault Scenic E Tech Engine: Efficiency Engineered

Renault Scenic E Tech Engine
Renault Scenic E Tech Engine

The Scenic doesn’t just stop at impressive battery tech. It’s equipped with a front-wheel drive system powered by an electrically excited synchronous motor (EESM), available in two power outputs tailored to the battery size. The 60kWh battery version offers 125kW/168bhp, while the 87kWh ups the ante to 160kW/215bhp.

  • Innovative Motor Design: What sets the EESM apart is its copper-wound rotor, which eschews the need for permanent magnets and thus the reliance on rare earth metals. This design not only mitigates environmental impact but also enhances efficiency, particularly during steady-state cruising, by allowing variable current flow to reduce magnetic excitation.

Diving into the Renault Scenic’s world, you’re greeted with a mix of old-school charm and cutting-edge features. With trims ranging from Techno to Esprit Alpine, and up to the luxe Iconic, it’s clear Renault wants to cater to a broad audience.

Comfort Meets Style

Once inside, especially in the Esprit Alpine or Iconic trims, the first thing you’ll notice is how supportive the seats are, with the Iconic trim adding electric adjustment for that perfect driving position. Despite testing the left-hand drive versions, the ergonomic layout shines through, boasting well-placed pedals and ample steering wheel adjustment.

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Renault Scenic E-Tech Interior – Eco-Friendly Inside Out

Renault Scenic E-Tech Interior

Renault isn’t just about looks; it’s serious about its green credentials. The Scenic boasts impressive stats: 24% recycled materials, with 90% of the car recyclable. Plus, 86% of the parts are sourced from Europe, highlighting its commitment to sustainability. And for those concerned about animal welfare, you’ll be glad to know that the interior uses recycled plastic bottles, achieving a surprisingly upscale feel without any leather in sight.

Tech That Wows

Hit the start button, and you’re treated to an explosion of animations on the 12” digital driver’s display, complete with Google OS branding and a whimsical welcome from Jean-Michel Jarre. It’s an entrance that promises a driving experience filled with character.

Upgrades and Views

The Esprit Alpine trim enhances the base model’s aesthetics with 20-inch diamond-cut wheels, while the Iconic trim introduces a rear-view mirror that transforms into a screen, displaying a camera view of what’s behind – handy when your cargo blocks the traditional view, though it does come with a learning curve.

Visibility Concerns

However, it’s not all smooth sailing. The tiny rear window and large C-pillars significantly hinder rear visibility, a notable drawback of the design. Thankfully, standard parking sensors and a rear-view camera mitigate this issue, ensuring safety isn’t compromised.

Navigating the Urban Jungle with the Renault Scenic E-Tech

Hitting the city streets in the Renault Scenic E-Tech offers more than just a comfortable ride; it turns heads with a soundtrack by Jean-Michel Jarre. Yes, you read that right. As you cruise through town, the Scenic doesn’t just silently glide by; it can serenade pedestrians with an exclusive low-speed alert composed by Jarre himself. It’s an innovative touch that adds a bit of fun to safety, ensuring you’re noticed without startling anyone.

Thoughtful Tech for City Driving

Renault has also smartly integrated other safety features to be as low-key as possible, like the subtler ping for speeding. There’s even a handy button near the steering wheel to quickly disable features like lane assist, showing Renault’s understanding of real-world driving annoyances. This is a user-friendly design choice that rivals might want to note.

Smooth Sailing on City Streets

The Scenic’s accelerator is tuned for smoothness, making jerky starts a thing of the past. And while its brakes are integrated with regenerative braking, they’re designed to avoid the abrupt stops that can catch passengers off guard. However, the brake pedal feel doesn’t quite match the Tesla Model Y’s predictability, and unlike the Y, there’s no one-pedal driving option. But with four levels of regenerative braking adjustable via steering wheel paddles, you can still find a comfortable level of regen for most city driving scenarios.

Maneuverability Mastered

Where the Scenic truly shines is in its maneuverability. The steering is light and responds quickly beyond the initial turn, thanks to a 12:1 steering ratio and just 2.34 turns lock-to-lock. This makes navigating tight city corners and parking spots a breeze, complemented by a 10.9m turning circle that’s ideal for urban environments.

Navigating the Urban Jungle with the Scenic

Navigating the Urban Jungle with the Scenic

The Renault Scenic doesn’t just bring innovation and sustainability to the electric vehicle (EV) market; it introduces a unique blend of safety, convenience, and Jean-Michel Jarre’s musical flair, making city driving not just safer but more enjoyable.

Making a Musical Entrance:
One of the Scenic’s standout features for city driving is its customizable low-speed alert system. Yes, one option includes a chord composed by Jean-Michel Jarre himself, turning every slow roll through pedestrian areas into a mini-concert. It’s a clever way to ensure pedestrians are aware of the silent EV’s presence without resorting to harsh or alarming sounds.

Smart Safety Features:
Renault has thoughtfully designed the Scenic’s safety features to be as non-intrusive as possible. The excess speed warning gently pings, avoiding the annoyance that can come from more intrusive systems. Even better, a simple button near the steering wheel lets you quickly disable features like lane assist, a user-friendly touch that rivals could learn from.

Smooth Operator:
Driving the Scenic around town is a breeze thanks to its progressive accelerator, allowing for smooth starts and stops. While the brake pedal might not match the predictability of a Tesla Model Y’s, and one-pedal driving isn’t an option, the available regen settings offer noticeable deceleration, easily adjusted with steering wheel paddles.

Agile and Maneuverable:
Comfort mode keeps the steering light, perfect for navigating tight city corners. The fast steering ratio and tight turning circle make the Scenic exceptionally maneuverable in urban environments, simplifying parking and making quick turns a piece of cake.

Comfort on Varied Roads

Comfort on Varied Roads

Ride Quality Abroad vs. Home:
The launch in Spain showcased the Scenic’s generally smooth ride on well-maintained roads. However, the occasional jiggle on less-than-perfect surfaces hints that UK’s challenging Tarmac could introduce some ride agitation. While not disqualifying, it’s an aspect to consider for those accustomed to Britain’s patchwork road quality.

Stability and Noise:
At higher speeds, some side-to-side sway and wind noise become noticeable, though tyre noise remains subdued on all but the roughest surfaces.

Efficiency and Charging: The Renault Scenic E-Tech’s Electric Advantage

The Renault Scenic E-Tech isn’t just about bringing a fresh design and comfortable interiors to the electric vehicle (EV) scene; it’s also setting a new standard in efficiency and charging capabilities.

Efficiency That Goes the Distance

  • Mileage Per Charge: The 60kWh battery pack delivers an impressive 3.81 miles per kWh, while the larger 87kWh option slightly trails at 3.7 miles per kWh, according to WLTP standards.
  • Heat Pump Perks: A standard feature across the board, the heat pump system cleverly utilizes outside air or recovers waste heat from the drivetrain. This efficient way of heating the interior or conditioning the battery is a game-changer, reducing the energy drain typically caused by air conditioning.

Charging: Smart and Swift

  • Optimized Battery Prep: The Scenic’s smart integration of Google Maps with the battery management system means your battery is pre-conditioned for the optimal charging speed by the time you reach the charger. The system even accounts for weather conditions to provide a precise range prediction.
  • DC Charging: With a maximum DC charging rate of 150kW, the Scenic boasts a robust charging curve, averaging 110kW. That translates to adding about 200 miles of range in just 30 minutes—perfect for those quick pit stops during long drives.
  • AC Charging Flexibility: For at-home charging, a 7kW onboard charger comes standard, with a 22kW option available for those with three-phase electricity, speeding up the recharge time considerably.

Bi-Directional Charging and Relaxation Mode

  • Power to the People: By pairing the Scenic with a Mobilize wallbox, owners gain bi-directional charging capability, allowing them to sell unused electricity back to the grid during peak times—a potential money-saver and grid helper.
  • Charging in Comfort: For those who opt for the Iconic trim, charging time becomes relaxation time. The ‘relax’ mode not only reclines the driver’s seat but also activates a massage function. Plus, the infotainment system stays on for 45 minutes, keeping you entertained or letting the kids watch their favorite shows.

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