Renault has just officially shown the new Megane E-Tech Electric at IAA Mobility 2021, a vehicle that isn’t actually related to any previous Megane. It is, in fact, built on the same CMF-EV platform as the Nissan Ariya, but it’s a front-wheel drive vehicle that looks nothing like its Japanese cousin; it’s far more conventional and some may even call it pretty.
Powering the new Megane E-Tech Electric is a choice of two electric motors - the base vehicle gets 96 kW (129 bhp) and 250 newton-meters (184.5 pound-feet) of torque, while the more powerful variant bumps that up to 160 kW (215 bhp) and 300 newton-meters (221 pound-feet) of torque. It also comes with two sizes of battery pack, neither of which is particularly big.
The base pack has 40 kWh capacity for a claimed WLTP range rating of 300 km (186 miles), while the larger 60 kWh pack increases the WLTP range to 470 km (292 miles). Peak charging rate is 130 kW, which will add around 300 km (186 miles) of range in 30 minutes; charging at 22 kW adds 50 km every 30 minutes or if you charge from a 7.4 kW wallbox, it will add around 400 km (248 miles) overnight.
Whichever version you go for, the new electric Megane, whose body blurs the lines between crossovers and more traditional hatchbacks, is 4.21 meters long, 1.78 meters wide, 1.50 meters tall and it sits on a 2.7-meter wheelbase. Its weight is relatively low for an EV, 1,624 kg (3,580 pounds), although the press release doesn’t make it clear if this applies for both battery packs - it probably doesn’t.
Gallery: Renault Megane E-Tech Electric
Acceleration for the more powerful version from 0 - 100 km/h (0 - 62 mph) takes 7.4 seconds and top speed is rated at 160 km/h (99 mph).
Inside, the new Megane EV comes with plenty of screen space to make it feel up to date. As standard, it comes with a 9-inch central infotainment display (resolution 1250 x 834 pixels), but what you see in the gallery is the larger (optional) 12-inch screen (resolution 1250 x 1562 pixels) that runs OpenR Link, an improved version of the Renault in-car operating system.
The driver display is even larger, 12.3 inches, and it has a relatively high resolution of 1920 x 720 pixels, which should be good enough to make individual pixels invisible. In most current Renaults with a digital driver’s display, the graphics are not the sharpest. Renault says that together the two large screens provide 774 square centimeters of screen real estate.
The automaker also says it has improved the quality of materials inside this vehicle compared to older Meganes and it seems pretty proud of the optional mood lighting (called Living Lights) that can be specified on this vehicle. Renault also says the 440-liter square trunk is very usable thanks to being a square shape and that the interior has been designed with practicality (and many stowage spaces) in mind - the biggest cubby after the trunk itself is the 30-liter glove compartment.