Renault Megane E-Tech Electric Review 2024
Renault Megane E-Tech Electric At A Glance
The Renault Megane E-Tech is the electric car the Volkswagen ID.3 should have been. It's a superb all-rounder with a high-quality (yet sustainable) cabin, plenty of space and low running costs. We rank it almost as highly as the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6 in terms of the best electric vehicles on sale today.
Don't make the mistake of lumping the new Megane E-Tech in with the lacklustre old Renault Megane family hatch. The old car was a below-par alternative to a Vauxhall Astra or Ford Focus - but the new model is purely electric, sharing a platform with the Nissan Ariya SUV. It's smaller than the Ariya, though, rivalling cars like the Cupra Born, Nissan Leaf, MG 4 and Kia Niro EV.
That bespoke electric car architecture means there's little in the way of compromise. The wheels have been pushed to the corners of the car, while the batteries are positioned low down in the floor. That's good news for interior space - it feels like a much bigger car inside, with space for all the family and their possessions. The rear seats aren't the roomiest in the class, however.
It feels properly posh inside, though. Our test car was a Renault Megane E-Tech Techno, which comes with part-faux-leather trim and a lovely fabric-covered dashboard. A highlight of the Megane E-Tech's cabin is the Google-based navigation system, which takes Android Auto a step further. Not only do you get Google Maps navigation built in (we usually find that it's better than manufacturers' own systems), but Google's voice-activated assistant will respond to commands like 'turn my heated seat on'.
Renault has concentrated on making the Megane E-Tech lighter than alternatives. It's still a heavy old thing, but it certainly feels softer over uneven road surfaces than some electric vehicles. That doesn't really come at the expense of handling, either - sure, it's not a sports car, but its steering is direct and it doesn't lean excessively in corners.
Refinement is another of the Renault Megane E-Tech's strong points. The way it hushes out external noise really does make it feel a premium car on the move. It feels pretty rapid, too, while it can travel 280 miles between charges according to official WLTP tests. That'll be more than adequate for most drivers, while its 60kWh battery can be charged at a rate of up to 130kW. That'll add 186 miles of range in around half an hour.
What's the catch? That's probably the price - from launch, The Renault Megane E-Tech starts from around £36,000, while the range tops out at nearly £40,000. Low running costs should balance out the finance payments, though, and it isn't really any more expensive than rivals (apart from the budget MG 4 EV, perhaps).