The classy, comfortable cabin and fine handling are impressive, as are the quiet diesel engines and five-star crash test rating. There's a good range of seating options, too
Even in long-wheelbase Grand form, the Espace struggles to take seven passengers and their luggage. Kneeroom is tight in the rearmost seats, and they need to be removed where more modern rivals have seats that fold into the floor
On the road
What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is
Choose from a strong 2.0 petrol engine, a 2.2 turbodiesel with mighty mid-range pull or a 3.0 V6 that, even mated to an auto 'box, offers brisk performance. All are easy to drive, even the weighty Grand Espace and its seven occupants.
Ride & Handling
The Espace is one of the smaller and lighter big MPVs. With quick, direct steering it's relatively easy to manoeuvre in tight areas, while staying cushy and stable on the motorway. However, its supple suspension and rolling gait can affect queasy passengers on uneven roads.
For such a big, large-fronted car the Espace kicks up little wind noise, even when belting along a motorway, and it's well insulated against road noise. The 2.0-litre engine can get a bit too rowdy when it's extended but the turbodiesel and V6 are fine unless thrashed. Manual gearshifts are notchy.