2011 Renault Fluence car review by Top Speed India

30 Апр 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи 2011 Renault Fluence car review by Top Speed India отключены
RENAULT Fluence Electric Cars

Filed under:

The French are back. Their Chennai factory is up and running, the dealer network is rapidly expanding and lots of promising products are in the line-up. The French manufacturer is banking on doing things differently this time as it re-establishes itself.

Their first car after the split with Mahindra and Mahindra is the Fluence which the manufacturer believes will help it build a premium image before it enters the volume market. With the diesel variant priced at Rs12,99,000 and the petrol at Rs14,40,000 ex showroom New Delhi, the French want to get things right this time around.

Renault had got it completely wrong to start with. The Logan, its first car, launched in a joint venture with Mahindra bombed. To put it simply, it was boring. The Renault and Mahindra marriage of convenience has broken and Renault would want to erase history from its head and start afresh. The French are known as much for their style as for their ego and this boasts well for India.

With a wounded esteem to nurse, the manufacturer aims at turning a new page and make India familiar with French pizazz. The recently launched Fluence is aimed to mark a new start for the French manufacturer and Renault wants to shake off the disappointment of the Logan and show Indian that it can make some really good cars.

Design

Based on the Renault-Nissan C platform, which is used in the Megane III for Renault and the Qashqai and X-Trail for Nissan, the Fluence made its international debut in 2009 and has been fairly successful internationally. The impression that one gets looking at the Fluence is that it has all the right cues for a premium sedan. Its prominent crystalline headlamps, long wheelbase, flowing lines and clean details lend it an elegant look.

Nothing particularly striking and the French flair is missing to an extent, but the Fluence is a refreshing change to the German cars we have got so used to. As a design it’s fresh, chic and has road presence. The unfussy design is carried on to the rear with large swept back headlamps and the 16-inch alloys with fat 205 section tyres give the Fluence a strong stance and balance.

Interiors

Step inside the Fluence and it’s a different ball game altogether. The French flair impresses immediately with the four layer dashboard. It’s a very original idea with each layer incorporating a set of features.

The top layer getting the navigation system, the aircon vents below that, then the climate control and finally the music system.

The interiors look luxurious and as expected are of excellent quality. The gadgets though are cumbersome to operate. The digital speedo is an interesting element and houses the engine temperature, fuel gauges and a comprehensive trip meter.

The chunky leather steering has a nice feel to it and makes the cabin a good place to spend time in.


Renault though has gone the unconventional way by giving the petrol and diesel variants different spec interiors. The idea is to position the petrol at the more luxury conscious buyer and the diesel at the enthusiast buyer.

The petrol variant is equipped with beige interiors, wooden strips, steering mounted controls, bluetooth, rear a/c vents, rain sensing wipers, leather seats, cruise control and anti-whiplash wipers. All these features are missing from the darker dashboard of the diesel car. The plush beige interior of the petrol variant gets our vote over the diesel though the instrument console is shared by both variants.

With a wheelbase of 2703mm, the largest in the segment, the Fluence has spacious interiors with generous legroom and this would surely go down well with the Indian buyer. The front and rear seats have adequate knee and shoulder room and good ergonomics.

Engine and preformance

Fluence gets two engine choices, a 1.5 diesel and a 2-litre petrol and it’s the petrol which has been getting all the attention and rave reviews. The twin-cam, 16-valve, 2-liter petrol engine develops 137PS at 6000rpm with 190Nm of torque developed at 3700rpm. The engine is smooth and free-revving and torque is generated low in the rev band making the Fluence responsive to drive.

It reaches 100kmph in under 13sec which makes it slower than the Skoda Laura but is level par with the Toyota Corolla Altis. With a company claimed fuel efficiency figure of 13.4kmpl, the Fluence is more efficient than the Laura but scores marginally less than the Corolla Altis.

The petrol does not have an option of a manual gearbox and comes only with a CVT gearbox. The smoothness associated with CVT units exists in and Fluence and there is also a 6-speed triptronic mode.

The 1.5-litre diesel is basically the same K9K motor that powers the Logan and the Micra. For the Fluence it comes with a variable geometry turbo (VGT) which pushes the power to 106PS p@4000rpm. With a torque rating of 240Nm @ 2000rom, the diesel variant sure is not an enthusiast delight and reaches 100kmph at over 14sec.

RENAULT Fluence Electric Cars

Its trump card would be exceptional fuel economy and Renault claims of 21.8kmpl. Unlike the petrol, the diesel variant gets only a 6-speed manual gearbox.

Ride

The Fluence sets a benchmark for ride quality and all test reports are raving about its comfort. The MacPherson strut front suspension with anti-roll bar and the independent rear suspension absorbs the rough surfaces admirably and you barely feel the bumps. That said, the Fluence does have body roll and while handling is not its strength, it’s decent enough. The steering is sensitive and lacks feel.

All variants of the Fluence come with ABS and ESP.

Competition

This segment has some interesting options and the Fluence has its hands full. The Skoda Laura offers the best performance and has been selling in good numbers, both the petrol and diesel. Toyota has launched the facelift version of the Corolla Altis and it appeals more to the mind than the heart. The Chevrolet Cruze too has had success and is spacious, luxurious interiors and a pedal happy diesel engine.

The Honda Civic is another car in the segment but the current model has been around for too long to generate interest.

Verdict

The Fluence is Renault’s comeback car for India and a good option for the company to reignite its brand with. In a nut shell, it’s efficient, spacious, interiors are high on quality, the petrol version is packed with features, and the ride quality is the best around. It does most things right but the diesel option which outsells the petrol in this segment is a let-down.

It lacks low end performance and features present in the petrol are missing.

If you’re looking for something distinct, the Fluence fits the bill right. For Renault, the Fluence is a step in the right direction but the problem though is that the Renault dealership network is still finding its way through India. A good car overall and we are especially impressed with the petrol.

But Renault ’s strategy of launching the petrol only with a CVT and the diesel without an automatic transmission is baffling.

RENAULT Fluence Electric Cars
RENAULT Fluence Electric Cars

Interesting articles

Other articles of the category "Renault":

Twitter-news
Our partners
Follow us
Contact us
Our contacts

dima911@gmail.com

423360519

About this site

For all questions about advertising, please contact listed on the site.


Catalog ALL Electric Cars and hybrid/ News and Information about Electric Car and Electric Vehicle Technologies, batteries for vehicle catalog with specifications, pictures, ratings, reviews and discusssions about Electric and Hybrid cars - Green energy