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Reader test: Renault Megane

2009-09-09 08:42

Jean-Pierre Bester, Centurion

Let me start by saying that I had a Citi Golf Chico 1.3 1999 model. That was the very first car I bought for myself, and it was good for what I paid for it.

I was very skeptical about buying this car, people saying: “Don’t buy Renault, their service sucks” or “They give problems dude….”  Well, I just closed my eyes and bought it.  And I am not sorry I did…

I had the privilege of getting my second car, a Renault Megane 2.0 Privilege, which is the subject of this article. I just love my Megane. I fell in love with it the first time I drove it, and knew that this was my car.

I know that many people don't like Renault, but let me tell you, this car even exceeded my expectations. The performance is great, I mean, it pulls so strongly in any gear, I can actually feel my body movement, and I clocked a top speed of 230km/h.

The handling is great, the fuel consumption is okay, but not bad. I get about 12km to the litre. It looks great as well and doesn't seem to age that quickly compared to its rivals. It is no Audi or Mercedes, but for what you pay for it you can’t go wrong.

Second hand, these cars go for next to nothing. People saying that they won’t buy a certain make because the resale value is bad, should just not buy any car then, because no car has value. If you want an investment, buy property. 

Room for improvement

Things I don't like and feel could've been improved during production is:

1. Vague steering (wooden steering).  I feel that the car doesn't communicate enough with you.
2. In models with leather door panels there seems to be a cracking noise... I was told that it is called "leather cracks".  
3. Build quality could've been better inside, there is too much hard black plastic used, but no rattles at all and is well put together. This car ages well, and still feels solid after 140 000 km.
4. The Shock Top Mountings… Man oh man, I replaced mine two times already.  Apparently the first Meganes had a bad batch with regards to the mountings, but is sorted now.

And the one thing everyone complains about with Renault, are their customer service.

I hope that someone at Renault reads this, because if they are willing and able to improve on their service levels, this brand will go far.

Their cars are not bad, but because there is a lack of customer service (I have experienced it), some Renaults give problems.  

All in all, not a bad car, but a good car in the hands of people that need to up their service levels. You can do worse than the Megane. I am not planning on selling my Gallic Chariot, in case I trade it in on the new Megane 3…

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