"Thanks to its ingenious cabin design and slightly larger dimensions, the Renault Grand Modus has an edge over the standard Modus for practicality."
As well as being practical, the Grand Modus is comfortable and easy to drive. The diesel engines are a little noisy at high revs, but offer strong performance. Most models are well equipped, while flagship editions are genuinely luxurious. Safety is impressive, although electronic stability control is a cost option.
With its light controls, the Grand Modus is an easy car to drive. It has a comfortable ride and offers a commanding driving position. As a result, it's simple to navigate around town. The small 1.2-litre petrol engine is underpowered, but fine if you stick to town driving. If you plan long motorway journeys, our favourite is the 1.5 dCi diesel. It's available in three different power outputs and suits the Grand Modus exceptionally well.
The boxy proportions of the Grand Modus mean back seat passengers will never be short on headroom. Legroom is a lot better than in the standard Modus, so the Grand Modus is the model to go for if you plan to travel with rear seat passengers on a regular basis. There's more than enough space for the driver and passenger up front.
The whole Modus range has experienced its fair share of issues. Some of the cabin trim feels quite poor quality, and cabin build isn't up to the same plush standards as some of Renault's more recent models, which have moved on in leaps and bounds. Engine problems are not unheard of, either.
There are a few ingenious features hidden in and around the Grand Modus that make it more practical than its rivals. The optional split-opening tailgate is very useful - it's possible to open a small section of the boot to quickly drop small items inside, which is particularly handy if another car has parked close behind. There's also a sliding rear bench seat and the option of an integrated bike rack. The longer bodywork of the Grand Modus means it has a 305-litre boot, which is nearly 100 litres bigger than the standard car's.
Value for money
The Grand Modus commands a £500 premium over the standard model, and we think it's well worth paying the extra for the added space. It matches fellow small MPVs such as the Nissan Note on price, but it's expensive when compared to the Clio hatchback on which it's based. A relatively low list price, plus the fact that it's a small and economical car means resale values are strong.
When fitted with the 1.5 dCi diesel engine, the Grand Modus manages the same economy and emissions as the standard Modus. It'll average an impressive 62.8mpg and it only costs £35 per year for Road Tax. Petrol engines aren’t quite as efficient, but are more responsive and better to drive around town. Service intervals are between 12,000 or 18,000 for petrol and diesel engines respectively, but Renault has a reputation for offering decent value servicing costs.