Renault Modus (2004 – 2012) Review

Renault Modus (2004 – 2012) At A Glance


+Sensible, practical little car with good features like 'Triptic' rear seat and some diesel engines under 121g/km. Plenty of character too.

-'Triptic' seat apparently dropped from spec sometime in 2007.

Insurance Groups are between 6–11
On average it achieves 93% of the official MPG figure

Seriously cute, immensely likeable and very practical sums it up in one line. I hadn't expected to get on with the Modus as well as I did.


Real MPG average for a Renault Modus (2004 – 2012)


Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

27–72 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

Satisfaction Index

Satisfaction Index What is your car like to live with?

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Ask Honest John

Can you recommend an alternative to the Renault Modus?

"I have a Renault Modus petrol 1.6 and it has failed its MoT big time! I love everything about this car, can you suggest any similar cars I could look at? I only do about 3,000 miles per year. My budget is approx £5,000. "
We'd recommend a Honda Jazz. It's a bit like a Modus (with a big boot for its relatively compact dimensions) but should be more reliable. You should be able to get a tidy example from around 2011 within budget. Alternatively, if something a bit more conventional appeals, consider a Ford Fiesta with the dependable 1.25-litre petrol engine.
Answered by Andrew Brady

Where can I buy winter tyres in summer?

"I’ve been on winter tyres for the last five winters. My 1.5DCI Renault Modus is happily clocking 65mpg on my 90mile daily commute across the southern Yorkshire Dales on Kleber Krisalp tyres. I leave them on year round because in this area and climate they are much the safer bet when coping with high rainfall, variable temperatures, cow pats and mud on the road. The only downside is having to replace a damaged tyre in the summer months when the Krisalps aren't available. Luckily have come up trumps once again this year with delivery direct to my front door."
The UK allocation of cold weather tyres is based on the previous year and is usually exhausted by November. But My Tyres ( is actually based in Germany, where cold weather tyres are compulsory in snow, so stocks have to be available. The Kleber All Season tyre, designed for use all year round, is called the Quadraxer.
Answered by Honest John

What's the cause of white smoke and emulsion on the on the inside of the oil filler cap?

"What is the cause of white exhaust smoke, even when the car is warm, from my 2008 Renault Modus 1.2 petrol with 32,000 miles on? There is also a small amount of emulsion inside the oil filler cap but no sign of anything unusual on dipstick or in the water reservoir."
Assuming that the engine runs okay, if you do quite a few short runs in the car (and not many long ones) this can cause condensation in the engine resulting in emulsified oil. You can clean it out and take the car for a decent long run afterwards and it should improve. However, the white smoke might also be water condensation, which is much more apparent in the current cold temperatures.
Answered by Alan Ross

Buying a Renault Modus - which engine is best?

"I need your assistance and opinion regarding the Renault Modus. We are planning to buy second car (used) and we are considering the Modus. We are in a dilemma in regards which one to choose. We have almost found one with the 1.2 16v engine with 75HP, and second, slightly more expensive 1.2TCE with 101HP. Second car will be used for car driving, and occasional country side rides and shorter journeys. Car will be used for driving kids to school and sports, and it will be rarely fully loaded. Which should we buy?"
The turbo engine is better to live with because it uses heat more efficiently. A water cooled turbo heats up the rest of a petrol engine and the cabin of the car far faster than a naturally aspirited petrol engine simply because the engine coolant is passing through a turbo situated in the exhaust manifold, which is the hottest part of the engine.
Answered by Honest John
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