WORD AND BUSINESS
Having studied the press releases, it would not be difficult to load the reader with numbers demonstrating the undeniable advantage of the new product over the previous model - is it only necessary? Naturally, the "Scene II" increased interior dimensions, increased space for rear passengers and in the luggage compartment. In his asset appeared a record-breaking area (in this segment of cars) windshield and sunroof. At the same time, of course, great attention is paid to the functionality of the interior, an abundance of all kinds of drawers, niches and “glove compartments”. Only the total volume of storage compartments hidden in the floor, under the seats and in more familiar places in the new "Scenic" is 91 liters - you must agree, it’s impressive.
Built on the units and assemblies of the Megan II, the compact van at the same time underwent a thorough individual refinement. The car’s base has not only increased its base and suspension settings have changed. We paid a lot of attention to acoustic comfort, brakes, ergonomics of the driver's workplace, heating and ventilation, and, of course, passive safety. There is almost no doubt that everything is configured and debugged to the most demanding standards. It remains only to verify this firsthand.
It is light, spacious and somehow cheerful - such a feeling arises at the first glance at the interior of "Scene II". The effect of warm fawn shades of upholstery and a huge two-section glass sunroof affects. There are five full places - without trying to pretend to be a seven-seater. Based on their rich experience and having studied competitors, the French decided not to complicate the thoughtful design, initially dividing the "scenes" into the usual and the "Grand".
The front seats are comfortable and spacious. The novelty of the model is emphasized by a digital instrument cluster, brought closer to the center of the panel, as well as a gear lever located on a high console and individual armrests for those sitting in front. The highlight of a rather expensive configuration is the push-button handbrake on the left side of the driver. At first glance, this is a concession to lovers of electronic games: I pressed the toggle switch - it braked, used the button next to it - the path is clear. You catch the true essence of an amusing little thing a bit later: it turns out that you don’t have to remove the car from the parking brake at all - when you start, the parking brake is released automatically.
And here are the first remarks: a colleague complains about a cramped (gas-brake) pedal assembly, but I note too soft and amorphous backs breathing under body weight. Until we set off, quickly back. The legs are really very spacious here, but, alas, the hatch rib hangs over your head, forcing you to bend your neck.
SEARCHING FOR OPTIMUM
With a 1.6-liter gasoline engine, the Renault Scenic II appears to be a perfectly rational and peaceful vehicle. On the one hand, nothing outstanding, on the other hand, the smooth and “momentary” nature of the motor is enough to move confidently in space. Only when starting it does it require increased revolutions, recalling that the Scenic is not a hatchback or even a sedan. By the way, the fashionable instrument cluster in motion is not impressive. Electronic speedometer and tachometer violate the usual perception of speed. The latter, I must admit, is almost not felt due to good aerodynamics. Only the noise of the motor, breaking exactly at 3500 rpm, recalls the position of the accelerator.
Better steel and brakes. I remember that the Megan II hatchback was strained by a sensitive pedal that required very careful handling. Here, everything is much more courageous and it’s easier to dose the effort.
The pendants are initially dazzled with rather hard shaking on small irregularities. But with an increase in speed, the Scenic becomes more comfortable, and at the same time it does not allow itself a hint of vertical buildup.
A lot of controversy caused the controllability of the machine. On winding serpentines, the excellent tuning of the chassis causes only admiration, so perfectly the car follows a given trajectory. It seems that he should already have slipped out, drowned out of the grip tires. And the "Scenic" know yourself writing an arc, also reacting to a turn of the steering wheel. But the idyll is broken by an electric power amplifier, as if living an independent life. Then he suddenly loads the steering wheel with excellent feedback, then impulsively relieves the effort, then trying to restore it to the desired level.
I change to a two-liter car. There is already a six-speed manual gearbox and the rear is a bit more convenient - there is no sunroof in the roof.
When starting off, such a motor, of course, is better, but on this all, it would seem, the undeniable advantages of 136 “horses” end. Feels like the car has not become noticeably more dynamic. Of course, in some ways the two-liter Scenic is preferable, but so insignificant that it did not play a role in a short acquaintance.
But the suspension here is much more comfortable, and he rulitsya differently. I recall the phrase developers about individually setting the electric power steering for each engine. Well, here it is noticeably more successful and clearer for the driver. Victory? There it was. Carried away by speed, I suddenly fall on a transverse road wave - and the Scenic, which almost conquered comfort, suddenly starts to sway from the bow to the stern. But the previous "hard" option swallowed an obstacle, almost not noticing. It seems that so far both have one and the other. They will certainly be working on them, especially since for Russia, most likely, an adapted version will appear.
SEVEN INSTEAD OF FIVE
"Scenic" with the prefix "Grand" meets us with much more significant and matured outlines. The general style, of course, is preserved here, but an increase of 183 mm in the rear overhang made the stern heavier, giving the car the appearance of a full-size minivan.
The most interesting interior elements are hidden in the trunk. Yes, these are the same third row seats, with one movement of the hand extended from the floor of the cargo compartment. Their shape, size and the distance to the backs of the second row do not raise doubts about the children's accessories of additional places. This is not denied by the developers.
The next innovation of the Grand - a two-liter turbocharged gasoline engine (120 kW / 165 hp) - is, alas, not yet available to us. At the presentation, all the cars are equipped with 1.9 dCi diesels. I can only say that this little thing easily competes with 2.0 liter gasoline. However, diesel has not yet been delivered to us - low quality fuel. Therefore, having sighed with regret, we "rumble" along the proposed winding route. Despite the increased dimensions, the Grand confidently passes serpentines. He, of course, is not as ideal in fast corners as his younger brother, but, unlike the latter (at least in the 1.6 liter version), he pleases with clear reactions to the actions of the driver.
In unison with handling - and suspension settings. Moderately resilient, moderately comfortable, they confidently cope with most French irregularities, actively shaking only at seams and other small defects in asphalt.
IN THE NATIVE FATHERLAND