Renault boss Luca de Meo launched the brand’s ‘Renaulution’ plan at the beginning of this year. Through this, it aims to be ‘a leader in electrification by 2025’ and fully EV by 2030 with a host of new EVs launched along the way.
The first of these has now arrived. Bringing a new platform with it, the Renault Mégane E-Tech joins the C-segment EV battle alongside high-profile hatches like the Volkswagen ID.3. So, what does the French competitor have to offer now that UK prices and specs have been finalised?
The Mégane E-Tech gets a 215bhp, 221lb-ft electric motor which powers the front wheels. An entirely new style of motor, it weighs just 145kg – 10 per cent less than the previous generation motor in the Renault ZOE – and does away with rare earth materials. Zero to 62mph takes 7.5 seconds and top speed is limited to 99.4mph.
A 60kWh battery powers the new Mégane E-Tech. It is just 110mm thick, making it the thinnest battery on the market and brings the car’s centre of gravity down around 90mm compared to petrol or diesel equivalents. This thin battery feature will be seen across future CMF-EV-based cars.
On the official test the Mégane achieves around 3.8 miles per kWh which is a decent level of efficiency. As such, the 60kWh cell is good for 280 miles on the WLTP test – putting it well above many rivals. For reference, the VW ID.3 with a 58kWh battery has a range of around 215 miles. Charging can be undertaken at up to 130kW which adds 186 miles in 30 minutes, whilst AC charging can be done at up to 22kW.
Renault has thoroughly overhauled the Mégane design and the E-Tech bears little resemblance to previous generation cars. Firstly, it’s much taller, verging on SUV proportions. Secondly, the EV powertrain has enabled Renault to push the wheels to the extremities of the car, extending the wheelbase in the process. It isn’t, however, any larger than the current generation ICE-powered Mégane, being slightly smaller in both length and width.
New LED lights create a signature that will be found on future Renault models whilst flush door handles present themselves as a driver approaches the car by means of a digital key. Wheels will be available from 18 to 20 inches in diameter, whilst at launch six colours with optional contrasting roof designs will be on offer.
Renault says that the Mégane E-Tech’s interior is inspired by the world of fine home furniture and it uses unusual or recycled material throughout to create a “welcoming and homely feel”. On higher-spec models, seat upholstery is 100 per cent recycled whilst the dashboard is topped with a textile finish.
In-car tech is powered by the latest-generation Qualcomm Snapdragon processor (which is found in other high-end EVs) with a 12.3 inch digital instrument cluster and 9 inch OpenR infotainment display handling the interfaces. Android Automotive OS is used and offers the usual Google functions such as Google Assistant and Google Pay Store.
Owners can use the My Renault App to connect to their car and control functions such as air conditioning and heat, schedule charging and pay automatically remotely.
ADAS safety systems as standard include automatic emergency braking with junction assist, emergency lane keep assist with oncoming traffic and road edge detection, traffic sign recognition, distance warning alert, driver drowsiness alert and much more. Higher spec cars get even more safety tech.
The base spec Equilibre EV60 car gets a serious level of standard kit such as interior lighting, heated wheel and front seats, park assist, rear view camera and the standard safety tech. It costs from £35,999. Techno spec cars gain 20-inch wheels, adaptive LED lights, various exterior and interior trim details, dual-zone climate control, Google services, wireless phone charging and several additional driving aids over the Equilibre cars. Techno spec cars cost from £38,495. Finally, the all-singing, all-dancing Launch Edition cars gain 20 inch wheels with a gold F1 blade, 9-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, smart rear view mirror and around view 3D cameras for £39,995.
Orders are being taken now.
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