Used Renault Scenic MPV 2003 - 2009 review

Category: MPV

This Renault Scenic is the best version yet of the original compact MPV

Renault Scenic MPV (03 - 09)
  • Renault Scenic MPV (03 - 09)
  • Renault Scenic MPV (03 - 09)
Used Renault Scenic MPV 2003 - 2009 review
Star rating

What's the used Renault Scenic MPV like?

There's plenty of space and practicality in both five-seat Renault Scenic and seven-seat Grand Scenic. The three rear seats can be folded or removed completely, while the additional two rearmost chairs in the Grand can be folded into the boot floor. Plenty of storage areas take care of the little things in family life.

Most trim levels are well equipped with creature comforts and all have first-class safety features, which helped earn the car a maximum five-star crash safety rating from Euro NCAP.


This Renault Scenic is the best version yet of the original compact MPV

  • It's a practical and cheap compact MPV with a comfortable ride and willing diesel engines
  • It's not the sharpest car to drive and the smaller engines are too weedy

It's also a comfortable and pretty refined car, provided you avoid the smaller engines. The ride is supple and it feels grippy and composed in corners, albeit with a fair degree of lean in bends and precious little feel in the steering.

The gearshift is imprecise, too, but more irritating are the bulky pillars and small rear screen that are frustrating when reversing.

Ownership cost

What used Renault Scenic MPV will I get for my budget?

How much does it cost to run a Renault Scenic MPV?

Affordable running costs are one of the Scenic's greatest attractions, and all models are very easy on the juice.

Our pick, the more powerful 1.9 dCi turbodiesel, should manage more than 45mpg, while the 105bhp 1.9 takes it to just over 50mpg and the 1.5 dCi into the mid-50s. Even the 1.4 and 1.6 petrols nudge close to 40mpg, and the 2.0 and 2.0 turbo petrols mid-30s.

Servicing costs are just above average. A VW Touran will be cheaper, for instance, especially if you choose diesel, but the Scenic is broadly on a par with a Vauxhall Zafira.

Our recommendations

Which used Renault Scenic MPV should I buy?

The best all-rounder is the 1.9 dCi turbodiesel with either 118bhp or 128bhp. It remains quiet at speed, copes with a full load and delivers impressive fuel economy.

Of the other diesels, the 85bhp 1.5 dCi diesel is frugal but slow, while the 105bhp 1.9 dCi is a good bet if you can't stretch to one of the more powerful versions.

As for petrol engines, the 1.4-litre (Scenic only) and 1.6-litre (both models) can feel underpowered when the family is on board or on steep inclines. However, the 2.0 pulls well and, if that still isn't enough, there's an even stronger 2.0 turbocharged model.

Picking between the two body styles is difficult, too. But, overall, we just prefer the longer Grand for its seven seats and more supple ride, although we wouldn't feel hard done by with a five-seat Scenic.

If you're buying one of the smaller engined models, avoid the Authentique models, which miss out on air-con. Instead, go for Expression, which gives the best value (air-con, four electric windows, CD player, automatic headlights and wipers), although Dynamic runs it close. Privilege trim is the top spec, but not worth the cost.

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