Renault Scenic MPV
Price £19,360 - £22,895
- Practical interior
- Good value for money
- Five and seven-seat options
- Poor resale values
- Starting to feel dated compared rivals
- Basic petrol engine feels underpowered
At a glance
"The Renault Scenic and seven-seat Grand Scenic offer great value for money and are designed to take whatever family life can throw at them."
With the new Ford C-MAX going on sale in 2015 and the eye-catching Citroen C4 Picasso ¬¬already in showrooms, the competition has never been tougher for the somewhat dull but extremely practical Renault Scenic.
The five-seat Scenic gives you the versatility of an MPV in a car that's about the same size as a Ford Focus. It's perfectly suited to family life, with lots of useful storage cubbyholes dotted around the interior. The Scenic's rear seats can be arranged in various ways and all three have ISOFIX mounts for safely fitting a child seat. The Renault also lets you remove the rear seats completely to free up as much load space as a small van. Less impressive is the Scenic's dull interior design, which has none of the flair that you find in the Citroen C4 Picasso.
Buyers can choose from a range of petrol and diesel engines. Both diesels can return more than 60mpg and are cheap to tax, which makes them the obvious choice for a family car such as the Scenic. The hi-tech 1.2-litre petrol model returns mid-40s mpg and is available with either 113 or 128bhp. The older 1.6-litre petrol is best avoided due to its relatively high running costs.
Renault also offers the Scenic in rugged XMOD specification, which adds 30mm to the ride height, black plastic cladding to the wheelarches, doors and bumpers, plus silver skid plates to the front and rear. Along with some sophisticated electronics, this gives the XMOD some light off-road ability, although it does without the four-wheel drive of a true off-roader. Nevertheless, it's our pick of the line-up when combined with the top-of-the-range diesel engine.
The rest of the range in made up of Dynamique TomTom and Limited models. All Renault Scenics come with decent standard equipment, including air-conditioning, Bluetooth phone connectivity, cruise control, automatic headlights and wipers and alloy wheels.
The Renault Scenic is at its best fitted with a frugal diesel engine
It drives better than you’d expect, but the Renault Scenic is no sports car
There’s lots of room for passengers and all Scenics are quiet on the move
The Renault Scenic has a hugely practical interior that’s perfect for families
After an impressive showing last year, the Renault Scenic has tumbled down our Driver Power 2014 rankings