By Kevin Miller
The Renault Scenic was the pioneer of Europe’s MPV class, and has been that segment’s best seller for over a decade, with over 3.3 million units sold since 1996. The third generation of Renault’s popular family vehicle was just launched in June of this year. Based on the French automaker’s new Megane platform, the Scenic is a vehicle similar in concept to the US-market Mazda5 or Kia Rondo.
I was fortunate to spend a long weekend in Switzerland with the new Scenic, and I came away quite impressed. My time was spent in a Scenic Dynamique TCe 130, which is the mid-range car with the mid range gasoline engine.
Entry to the Scenic is gained using the Renault Card, a key fob unlike any I’ve seen in the US. Flat and shaped like a credit card, it could literally be kept in one’s wallet, rather than needing to be kept in a pocket or purse. Doing most so-called Intelligent Keys one better, the Renault Card unlocks the vehicle automatically when it is approached, and automatically locks when the driver (or whomever is carrying the key) walks away. One fault I experienced was that the car would sometimes lock itself when I got out just to walk to the trunk, with the Renault Card in my pocket. Once inside the Scenic, the vehicle is started using a dash-mounted pushbutton. Continue Reading →