Renault Megane E-TECH first test drive report

The Renault Megane E-TECH Electric is one of the most ambitious electric cars presented this year. Although the veteran ZOE remains one of the most popular zero-emissions models on the old continent, with the Megane E-TECH Electric the French brand seeks to strengthen its line-up in the face of the arrival of new rivals such as the Volkswagen ID.3.

Although it shares a name with the thermal Megane, the truth is that the newcomer has nothing to do with the said model, as it sits on the new CMF-EV modular platform of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, which also we can find in the Nissan Ariya. Thanks to the use of this architecture, the electric Megane is 15 cm shorter (4.21 meters) than its combustion cousin (4.36 meters).

The first deliveries of the Renault Megane E-TECH Electric will take place in March 2022. The French model will be available in two versions: the entry version will be fitted with a 136 HP (100 kW) electric motor and a 40 kWh capacity battery that It will allow homologation of a maximum range of 300 km WLTP, while the top of the range will use a 218 hp (160 kW) engine and a 60 kWh pack with which it will reach 470 km WLTP.

In both cases, the batteries will be liquid-cooled. The main difference is found in their charging systems: the 40 kWh model will not have direct current fast charging, while the 60 kWh model will be able to reach powers of 130 kW. As standard, both will be limited to 7 kW in a single phase, although optionally they can incorporate a 22 kW three-phase charger.

Renault Megane E-TECH

The Renault Megane E-TECH to be launched in 2022

Although there are still several months until it arrives at the dealerships, some media such as Autocar have already been able to put themselves at the controls of the Renault Megane E-TECH Electric. The first impressions of journalists are, a priori, promising: apparently, the firm of the diamond has developed a fast, efficient and comfortable electric car.

According to Vicky Parrott, Autocar tester, the Megane E-TECH Electric is the most fun electric car in its class, with fast (albeit light) steering and a responsive front axle. Its ride comfort also stands out, once again defined as the best in its category, something remarkable if we take into account that the unit tested was equipped with huge 20-inch wheels.

Renault Megane E-TECH

In curves, the car maintains its composure thanks to an unladen weight content of 1,624 kg; that is, about 200 kg less than a 58 kWh Volkswagen ID.3. This is possible thanks to the use of a lighter motor and battery pack and the use of aluminum in the door panels, among other things.

Although during the initial tests the journalists could not measure consumption accurately, the car is very efficient, with a consumption of about 17.7 kWh per 100 km after a fast route on motorways and secondary roads. The good performance of regenerative braking (adjustable via paddles behind the wheel) is also highlighted, although the inconsistent transition to mechanical brakes is criticized.

Renault Megane E-TECH

The infotainment system software is once again rated the best in its class: the OpenR display, consisting of two screens (12.3-inch instrumentation and up to 12-inch touch screen in portrait format), has 8 GB of RAM, 128 GB of internal memory, a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and the OpenR Link system, based on the Android Automotive OS operating system. This set is, according to the journalist, fast and very intuitive.

The habitability for its part is good since two tall adults will be able to travel comfortably in the second row of seats; in addition, the flat floor allows the central plaza to be relatively comfortable. All in all, the height is somewhat fair. The 440-liter boot for its part is very spacious, although the high height of the loading mouth is criticized.

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