Renault Scenic E-Tech: Taking the scenic route

Renault Scenic E-Tech

Renault is staking a claim on the burgeoning electric family car market with its all-new Scenic E-Tech 100% Electric.

Once you get past the fact that they’ve really called it ‘Scenic E-Tech 100% Electric’, as if customers need firm confirmation that their new car is indeed fully powered by batteries, there’s a lot to like.

A range of up to 379 miles on a full charge is eye-catching for a start, and Renault are acknowledged masters of useful, comfortable family cars.

The drivetrain (100% Electric, remember) uses a 87kWh battery and 217bhp electric motor. Electric cars are typically a lot heavier than their petrol or diesel counterparts - batteries weigh a lot more than a tank of hydrocarbons - but the Scenic is a relatively svelte 1,852kg, says Renault.

One crowd-pleasing feature is the ‘Solarbay’ opacifying glass roof, which offers four different settings (from fully light to fully opaque) at the touch of a button. There’s also the option to vary the opacity front to rear. It’s sure to be a talking point.

There’s also an abundance of storage space, and Renault is particularly pleased with the rear armrest which features “two swivelling arms, 3.6 litres of storage for smartphones and tablets, fold-out stands to watch screens comfortably, two cupholders and two USB-C ports”.

The Scenic has clearly been executed with more imagination than Volkswagen’s offerings, though the £40,995 starting price isn’t especially appealing.

You can order one now, with the first cars reaching customers in May.