Grand Espace is by far the nicest MPV to drive, especially with the variable speed PAS. It handles and rides well, doesn't roll through corners. The 2.2 DCi engine is powerful and torquey. I've driven 75000 miles in mine over 5 years. It's well equipped, comfortable and the glass roof is SO COOL. I use it mostly with 5 seats and carry a lot of equipment, and in this mode it certainly beats other MPVs for carrying capacity: seats very heavy to move though.
In year 1 it had 10 days off the road with clutch and parking brake problems (each led to an official recall). It then became relatively reliable and when its 3 year lease ran out I bought it. Problems since have included a cracked rocker cover (which Renault to their credit made a goodwill payment on), A/C failure and the notorious EGR valve failure which causes irregular running, power loss and can lead to turbo failure if not sorted properly. Search Parker's Forums or Honest John's Back Room and you will discover hundreds of customers complaining about EGR and related problems and of Renault garages' inability to correctly diagnose and repair them. I’ve been relatively lucky with only 2 instances of this problem (at 53000 miles and current) but some customers have spent four or five thousand pounds at dealerships trying to get sorted. It's a notorious issue that somehow Renault has managed to deny all responsibility for and it makes buying a car out of warranty (or even in) a very risky proposition.
I agree with the two previous reviews. This is a stylish and practical car.For it's size it has good performance, excellent drive and MPG. The big dissapointment however, is the durability of the interior. The whole idea of it,is that it gets used by groups or for carrying loads,but everything marks so easily. The only problem that I had(and I have seen this on a previous review)was with the accelaration. It would be none existant then there would be a rush. The mechanic at Renault spent all day on it and the problem was a flap in the turbo had become sooted up and was sticking.It was great after he had cleaned it.Just a tip. All round I love the car and look forward to the next model.
I bought this car to replace a Zafira which didnt quite have enough room when carrying seven people. I have had an 04 plate 1.9 dci authentique (with dymamique pack) for about a year now and have covered approx 12000 miles. Pros: Fuel economy has been very good considering the size of this car. Driving position is very comfortable. Build quality seems to be good. Air vents in the car are very well placed and keep all passengers comfortable when the air con is running. The panoramic sunroof gives the interior a light and airy feel, even on a dull day. Servicing was a little more than my previous car but not bad. (£225 for standard service) When you remove the rear seats this car is basically a medium sized van. As such, transporting items of furniture and visits to Ikea are a breeze. Cons: One front tyre cost me £110 (double the cost of my previous car) Rear seats are very heavy and awkward to remove or change around. Electronic handbrake has seized on me once. Fuel indicator can be unreliable at lower levels. Rear view is not brilliant when carrying passengers in the rearmost seats. In summary, If I was buying this car again, I think it would be worth going for a slightly higher spec model. Definately one with cruise control.There are not enough storage spaces inside the car and the CD player is not the best quality but overall I like this car very much and do not regret my purchase.
My car is coming up to three years old and have owned it since 5 months old. While the car has only covered 18,000 miles from new we use it pretty regularly and it is easy enough to drive and park (we do have reverse parking sensors which help). We have had no problems except a faulty ABS/ESP sensor which was cleared up by the supplying dealer in 24 hours. I was a little worried when Ileft the car parked at teh airport car park for three weeks while on holiday, but on my return it simply started straight away with no sticky hand brake.
I have had no costs other than standard servicing, but the front tyres will need replacing soon.
Overall it is the most practical car we have ever had. We have moved 2 large sofas which we managed to get into the back with the rear seats removed. I think we have over 2.4 metres of clearance in the back.
It is good to drive for such a big car and suprisingly economical on a run. I managed 45mpg on a 200mile round trip one weekend.
The large sunroof is great for the kids and the various seat arrangements mean we can keep the kids apart.
Being a grand espace we have no issues with lack of luggage space.
In summary it is a great car and being blsack with large alloys actually looks pretty cool for an MPV.
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