I chose this as a company car - it was new on an 02-plate. The standard Initiale kit is impressive to say the least. The 2.0-litre petrol engine is way underpowered for the size and weight of the car and as such provides a very poor overall driving experience.
The handling is stodgy, mainly due to the car's weight, I guess, it always seemed front heavy and unresponsive.
After 20,000 miles it developed serious electrical problems. The engine management would shut down, bringing the engine to idle when at speed such as on motorways, with no way of restarting engine due to the safety feature of the start button. I was forced to 'coast' to a standstill before restarting.
After five attempts, Renault finally assured me that it had been fixed. It failed yet again with near fatal results. After 79,000 miles and less than 18 months on the lease, it went back.
I am now looking for another company vehicle and, guess what? The Laguna Initiale stands out head and shoulders on paper as the best car to choose from a specification, safety and running cost perspective - shall I have another? Renault assure me that all the electrical problems are resolved, the 150bhp 2.0 dCi looks quicker, so maybe. Or should I go for a much lesser trimmed Volkswagen Passat for the same money?
One thing to consider I suppose is that the company I work for is French-owned so maybe I should just top-up the life assurance and place the order!
I have just returned my car after a three-year lease, which was virtually trouble-free. I got good economy (40mpg urban, 58mpg on motorways).
The Dynamique trim offers a good balance of luxury and sportiness in terms of standard kit. However, it loses one star for being slightly cramped, especially the headroom in the back due to the slope of the hatch.
My only gripes were the front tyres which only lasted 11,000 miles of normal driving, and a rumble from the large air filter box that sits at the back of the engine bay. This was partially resolved by retightening the mounts every few months.
The engine has a bit of turbo lag from low revs, and the gearbox is a little notchy, but overall it was a good car, and cheap to lease as well. Due to our two children and associated paraphernalia we outgrew the car in the last few months, but I would recommend the Laguna based upon my experiences.
I got my Renault Laguna in March 2002 and have done 99,000 miles to date. So far it has had all the brakes and discs changed once, which is acceptable.
At 25,000 miles, it has also had the driver's seat sub-frame changed, the driver's door seal changed (and holed by dealer), and the rear suspension bushes changed. The intercooler was changed at 58,000 miles, and the suspension bushes changed again. The turbo was changed one week later, and again the next day when it dumped all its oil, then it needed changed again, because the dealer made a mess of this and had to do it twice.
It has just had the engine management chips, and entire engine bay wiring loom changed.
On the positive side, it is a good looking car, is very quiet on the motorway, and has a heck of a lot of kit. The Michelins tyres last forever, and it is now running like a dream.
It is also too small for a long-legged driver (6ft 5in) like me.
I cannot really fault Chester Renault (other than the inability to fit the turbo) and they have bent over backwards to get me decent-sized courtesy vehicles, but then I am on first name terms with them.
If you really have to buy a diesel one, buy a (really) high mileage vehicle where all the faults are fixed, otherwise get one of the petrol versions.
I know a lot of people with Renault diesel cars, and we've all had turbo failures (1.5 and 1.9 versions). I am told that the new Laguna addresses all these problems, but I won't be having another Renault.
When it goes, it goes well - but more often it doesn't go. We've had two intercoolers, three turbos, an air box coming loose and a failed passenger side electric window - on day one.
We also had a total brake failure at 50,000 miles and frequent loss of signal with the tyre sensors and very frequent fuel injection warnings that could never be found when taken to the garage.
The dealer was naff and couldn't be bothered half the time, and even gave the car back after service with a failed turbo, claiming it was a water pump failure. The paint finish was dodgy, too.
Positives include plenty of space and it being a good motorway cruiser. The hire cars were far more reliable when the Laguna was in the garage. The big failures occured just out of warranty. Must be design obsolescence outside warranty. Don't buy one!
Order a brochure, find your nearest dealer or book a test drive
Owned for 1 year, as family runabout Pros good size, general build quality, powershift gearbox, good to drive, low costs Cons handling slighly…
Had this car for 90k from new. A 56 plate. In over 2,000,000 miles driven this one has broken down the most of any car I have had. DO NOT get a 2.0…