Renault Megane E-Tech long-term test: report 5

Renault's latest Megane has gone electric and adopted trendy SUV styling, but what it's like to live with? We're finding out...

Renault Megane E-Tech LT front

The car Renault Megane E-Tech EV60 220HP Techno Run by Jim Holder, editorial director

Why it’s here Its name may be well known, but little else about this car is familiar; for the first time the Megane is an all-electric car, sitting on all-new underpinnings that will form the basis of a family of new Renaults. Is it any good?

Needs to offer The ease of use and practicality of family car rivals while proving efficient in its use of electricity and fast to charge

Mileage 4560 Price £39,495 Target Price £39,011 Price as tested £40,445 Test range 198 miles Official range 280 miles

3 May 2023 – An electric car that's fun to drive

Some people say electric cars are boring to drive. I say the Renault Megane E-Tech is the car that proves them wrong.

Sure, it doesn't have the seat-of-the-pants characteristics of a hot hatch, even though it has a 0-30mph time to match them (around 3.7sec), but it can make even the most mundane commute a pleasure.

Renault Megane E-Tech brake pedal position

A large part of that is down to the immediate and highly controllable acceleration it delivers; opt for sports mode and the accelerator response is wonderfully immediate. That might suggest I am advocating driving it quickly – far from it. In fact, the real benefit is that it allows you to not only stay ahead of the cut and thrust of city traffic but also to modulate your speed with incredible precision.

It is worth noting that sense of control is dimmed if you go into Eco mode, which dulls acceleration and increases braking regeneration to give the impression of driving through treacle (you do get used to it). However, in my experience, careful driving in Sport mode reaps the same results in terms of range.

It helps that the Megane E-Tech’s steering is wonderfully direct, giving it a directness and sense of agility that belies its weight. The ride is also impressive, the car remaining flat in corners and soaking up even the worst bumps and lumps in the road – a surprise, perhaps, given the large 20in wheels that it wears.

Renault Megane E-Tech interior front seats

I like the driving position, too, although I’m aware that not all colleagues can get entirely comfortable. I’m long-limbed and like sitting low, though, and the Megane delivers a range of seat adjustments that suit me perfectly.

In fact, my only criticism is the pedal position. I’m not sure if it’s down to the right-hand drive conversion, but for some reason the brake pedal is mounted a long way to the left, but then positioned where you’d expect to find it in the middle of the footwell. The net result is that very occasionally when I brake, I snag (only lightly – it’s inconvenient rather than dangerous) the pedal with my resting foot.

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