There is no need to go back over the whole story of the Renault Espace (1984), which contributed with the Chrysler Voyager (1983) and the development of the Nissan Prairie (1982), no doubt the (and lesser known) minivan concept. To live”. A concept that lasted for some time, before folding under the influence of SUVs and other crossovers that quickly took over the field, the number of competitors increased. Perhaps this is why Renault gave it a little crossover look on the occasion of the launch of the 5.e Generation in 2015.
But today, the concept is on the way out, as Renault has indicated that production of the Espace will soon cease Moreover, at the time of writing these lines, there are only two versions left in the catalog, two power levels from the 2.0 diesel DCI: 160 or 190 hp. But is it because a model is suspended that it loses its qualities? The 190 hp version on a cruise of around 2,000 km proves that it is not.
With its Crossover Air, the Espace offers a good seat height, easy access to the board and good visibility of the machine’s contours. Driving position Really nice and very padded and well designed front seats let you rack up the miles without any fatigue. Especially since the passenger compartment is well soundproofed and the sound of the 4-cylinder diesel only reaches the passengers.
This version has Multi Sense as standard, which allows you to configure the driving mode. In practice, we have always driven in “Normal”, not seeing much interest in “Sport” mode in such a machine. This higher initial Paris version has these controlled shock absorbers combined with the “4 control” rear steering wheel as standard. And there, on the other hand, we directly realize their contribution, both in terms of management in small mountain villages and stability on the highway. Never, while driving, Space doesn’t give an impression of its 4.86 meter measurement.
The 190 bhp but above all 400 Nm diesel engine is available early on as well as its 6-speed EDC robotic automatic gearbox that backs it up perfectly, ensuring revving and dynamism at all times. But all in all, it gave us a ridiculous consumption of 6.5 to 7 l/100 km on the highway, at constant speed and… legit, despite having 5 people on board and luggage. What is the guarantee? Range of about 900 kmLonger travel times are always appreciated. When an electric will guarantee such autonomy, we want to spend 1 hour at a charging station. If we find a free one that works…
Space has another quality Its internal layout, where no space is sacrificed (except for the bottom two in the trunk of the 7-seater version). The 3 passengers on the middle bench each have a real seat of the same width, sliding, with an adjustable backrest, plenty of space for their legs and various storage spaces. At the same time, the trunk volume (again if two booster seats are not installed) basically allows you to see ahead. what else
Too bad, yes, that this place At the end of their careers and will not be renewed. Because objectively, it’s a smart vehicle, pleasant to live in as well as to drive and well finished. It definitely lost a bit of the minivan side that was so fashionable at a certain time to “SUV-erize”, but without the excess. In any case, it remains smarter than some SUVs that call it adventure, but without any regard for interior well-being.
Unfortunately It is only available with two diesel engines The first price of which is around 50,000 euros in the Balance version with 160 hp. Of course, standard equipment is provided and includes an especially automatic gearbox (sometimes hesitant and slow to engage at low speeds), but it remains a budget that is not very accessible to most families for which it is made. So what about the higher initial Paris version with the dCi-190 hp engine which is close to 60,000 euros, or even if you opt for the panoramic roof for 1.1150 euros?
If you’re looking for a family vehicle, welcoming for 5 people and their luggage, fully convinced of long journeys, whether it’s comfort on board or silence or even ridiculous fuel consumption and therefore endless autonomy, then don’t look too far: the Espace is probably made for you on two conditions. done First rush as the end of production approaches. Then agree to get your hands on the wallet because the initial bet is not insignificant.
But since this is a model at the end of its career, there may be a way to negotiate some attractive discounts on stock vehicles. After a bit of searching, and without the slightest negotiation, we found an Espace dCi-160 for 44,385 euros instead of 49,800 euros. It is always taken and is about the price of a compact electric offering 300 km of autonomy (when everything is in order). Between the two, my heart doesn’t really flutter…