Renault Megane E-Tech long-term test

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

Jim with Renault Megane E-Tech

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 8523 Price £39,495 Target Price £37,849 Price as tested £40,445 Test range 245 miles Official range 280 miles

9 July 2023 – Checking in

I’m many thousands of miles into life with the Renault Megane E-Tech now, which feels a good moment to reflect on what it does and doesn’t do well.

Positively, the former far outweighs the latter. To my eyes it is a great-looking car, inside and out, the exterior styling setting it apart from other mainstream electric cars, and the interior beautifully blending modernity and functionality.

Initially, I was worried that I’d be overwhelmed by the plethora of dials, buttons and switches hanging off the steering wheel. I felt there were simply too many of them, from gear paddles to volume controls, plus a gamut of stalks including the gearshifter it all seemed a bit too much. But, as is so often the case, time has taught me to use them all instinctively.

Renault Megane E-Tech interior

More irritating is the fact that some of them obscure your view of the dash. At 190cm, I'm pretty tall, which helps me peer over the wheel to see the information, but for some drivers of different statures it could be a real issue.

I love how the Megane E-Tech drives – although, again, it takes some getting used to because the steering is deliberately fast and precise, giving the car a feeling of agility not normally associated with family hatches. It helps with manoeuvring in tight spaces, too.

Families should watch out for the rear legroom, which is cramped by class standards. My long legs don’t help, but my teenage kids don’t welcome having to sit behind me. Boot space, in contrast, is generous.

Renault Megane E-Tech boot full

Range is a mixed bag. I’ve noted in previous reports the Megane E-Tech's poor winter performance, undermined by extensive use of heaters on short journeys, but it is notable too that Renault now sells a version of the Megane with a heat pump, which should extract 10-20% more range from the car in the cold; I’d recommend it. At worst, I got 135 miles from a full charge, although it’s worth noting that never caused me an issue – just frequent charge stops.

Conversely, in summer range has shot up; it’s now delivering up to 245 miles from a charge, which is impressive, and covering up to 3.3 miles per kWh of energy consumed – figures that are towards the top end of the mass market.

Would I recommend a Megane E-Tech? I can answer that emphatically, having taken a neighbour for a drive and run through everything I outlined above. He tested quite a few rivals, and we discussed the pros and cons at length, but placed his order for the Renault last week. It really is that good.

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