Last month I promised to update readers on how the Grand Espace performed shifting such items during my move and I’m pleased to report that it exceeded my expectations.
It’s amazing just how much this vehicle can gobble up in one go. I’m aware it isn’t built to act as a household load-lugger but its ability so far convinces me that for a family driving holiday, it would be perfect, regardless of whether all seven seats are occupied or not.
For my purposes I laid all rear seats flat – and it took just seconds to perform this task.
With its high roof this leaves ample space inside and in my case it was used to accommodate a book case, shelving and loads of boxes of CDs and cassettes (you may remember those). Since my time with the vehicle, I’ve enjoyed its comfort levels, high specification and powerful V6 diesel engine but one gripe is the number of illuminated dials, digital diagrams, instructions and graphs that show up on the instrument panel. It looks a bit like an aeroplane’s cockpit there are so many and it can get very confusing to look at.
Mind you, if this was an aircraft then pilot and passengers would undoubtedly be in first class accommodation, such is the comfort and luxuries offered by our test vehicle. Since my last road test my fuel consumption has fallen from bettering the official combined figure (29.7) to falling well below it, at 24.8. However, its last tankful of fuel was mainly used for short journeys so that would have been partly to blame. Mike Roberts
Renault Grand Espace 3.0 dCi Initiale
Price (OTR) £34,175
CO2 emissions (g/km): 252
Company car tax bill (2004/5) 40% tax-payer: £396 per month
Insurance group: 14
Combined mpg: 29.7
Test mpg: 24.8
CAP Monitor residual value: £10,125/30%
HSBC contract hire rate: £600 per month
Expenditure to date: Nil