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Renault Scenic - Buyer's Guides - Review of 3 Scenics

Although slightly out of date, below is a review I wrote not long after I took delivery of my third Scenic. I have now had 1 each of the 3 Scenic shapes.
Hope it may prove to be useful to anyone considering buying a Scenic.

I have now had my new Scenic for a couple of months, and, as this is my third Scenic, thought it might be worth sharing my views of the 3 cars. This is not a comparison between Scenics and other cars, this is simply my view of them which may, or may not, be of use to anyone considering buying one. I have 2 children, aged 10 and 6, so hopefully my thoughts may help those that Renault consider to be their target customers for this car.

The 3 models I have had are as follows
99 T Reg Scenic 1.9rtdt
01 51 Reg Scenic 1.9dci dynamique+ 105bhp
04 04Reg 1.9dci Dynamique 120bhp

My first Scenic was the original shape, I bought it just before the face lifted version came in and got a good deal. It was at the time that dealers could pre-register cars as a loophole and save money. I was very impressed with the car, as was my family. As we have came to expect with mpvs, the versatility these cars have are amazing. Whether it be taking a full car Inc pram to the South of France, or taking bikes, or rubbish to the dump, the flexibility of the seating layout is excellent. The dash and trims held up well even though they were subject to the usual mess you get with kids in the car, food on the go etc. I took the car to 60000 miles, including getting its timing belt changed at, I think, 48000 miles. There were no major issues mechanical wise, no irritating rattles; all round it was a great car. The only downside was that just before I traded it in, I discovered that the rear passenger foot well cubbyhole was getting wet. I tried everything to try and sort it but couldn’t get to the bottom of it. No doubt the garage fixed it for the new owner!
Engine wise, the old style turbo diesel was great. Over the term of ownership, I averaged 48.5mpg, it had great torque, could cruise at 100mph all day long on the French motorways.
I liked my first Scenic so much that I believed Renault's hype about their new dci engines, and traded it in for my second……………..

My second Scenic had 6000 miles on the clock and was the dealer’s accountant’s car. Platinum silver, alloy wheels, part leather interior, it looked fantastic. I kept this one for only 35000 miles and the only reason I got rid of it was the engine.
I have posted about this several times in forums; after the turbo diesel in the first car, the dci105 engine was awful.
I only averaged 42mpg, doing the same journeys as before and that was without air con on. It has no torque at all, no overtaking grunt, and felt very low geared when setting off from standstill. I was so concerned about this that I had 3 different garages check it out for me in case there was something majorly wrong, but they all said the engine was working perfectly. Interestingly though, every garage I consulted advised me that they had numerous customers with the same opinion as myself. I eventually decided to have the car chipped to get some more performance but at the last minute I decided to trade it in for the new style Scenic instead.

Other than the engine, the car, once again was great. The kids liked the electric windows in the back though I could isolate them from the drivers seat, climate control was a boon although, as with all air cons, if not used you end up with steamed up windows. I take pride in my cars, washing and waxing etc, but took a severe dislike to the alloys on the car. They were the variety that had lots of “spokes”, maybe 10-15 or so, and due to the gap between them being so small they were an absolute pain to keep clean. Even using Wonder Wheels and then applying a layer of polish, they still got dirty very quickly, the lacquer had started to peel off, and they had just lost their attractiveness. I would quite happily have exchanged them for a set of clean wheel trims! The part leather trim was very smart and, surprisingly, very easy to keep clean with the kids in the car. One point of note, when buying a car seat, either a baby one or a booster cushion, actually check out whether it fits the Scenics moulded seats. The middle seat is narrower than the outside two. Also, the split tailgate was very useful at times, you can just open the glass part and lift the parcel shelf and place your items in. This is especially useful either in tight places, or those times when your boot is full and you don’t want it to spill out when you open it!

At the beginning of July, I traded it in for a new shape Scenic, mark 2 I believe they are being called? When I first saw the new shape I wasn’t impressed, the boot looked smaller and the shape, well, it had the new Megane shape, which didn’t appeal to me.

However, after a lengthy test drive, and many hours deliberating, I decided to take the plunge and get the new car.
Currently in scenicman's garage:
Scenic 2004 1.9dci Dynamique
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