By on October 2, 2014

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The latest victim (or beneficiary, depending on how you look at it) of the crossover craze currently captivating Europe is the Renault Espace, which has transformed from Europe’s first minivan to yet another two-box CUV.

With 1.2 million versions of the Espace sold, Renault has a ton of equity in the nameplate. While Renault’s Dacia brand and the subcompact Captur crossover have been huge hits for Renault, their large car business – including the now 11-year old Espace – has been lagging. Renault is hoping that the Espace will act as a de facto flagship for the brand, while also keeping current customers in the fold (a three-row version will remain on offer).

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20 Comments on “Paris 2014: Renault Espace Crosses Over...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    So, I would drive this. I will admit that now. It hearkens me to the Avaantime. It will be comfortable and fairly efficient, and looks different than other crap on offer here.

    BRANG DAT AS A NISSAN MAYNE.

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    “The latest victim (or beneficiary, depending on how you look at it)”

    Were they weeping in the streets? If people were clamoring for minivans do you think any manufacturer would say “No, you must drive a crossover because we here at Microsoft Motors know what’s good for you. Just look at the Windows on our new model 8 and like it!”

    Is this what enthusiasts think is happening in the automotive world? Well just cry loud enough and you’ll get a new model 9 which they will call model 10 which will be just like the minivan model 7 and all will be right with the world

  • avatar
    Zykotec

    To me it looks like the only thing they have changed is the design. There is no ground clearance to speak of, they just put some larger wheels on it and made the windows slightly smaller. Most of the new CUV’s have the same ‘problem’ (which is mostly a positive thing I guess) Even my ’07 CRV has about the same ground clearance as my ’94 Audi 100, and the 4th gen is even lower. Low and wide has finally been cast away for practicality, even if that for some of us means they don’t look as good as cars used to.
    Most CUV’s are barely taller than the average mid 50’s car, and I guess they would look pretty normal compared to a 40’s car.

  • avatar
    genuineleather

    Very Flex-y: I like. I’m sure Renault will have a much easier time wringing high transaction prices from a crossover than a minivan.

  • avatar
    benders

    If it wasn’t for the backgrounds, I’d swear this was an slightly upscale, stretched version of the new C-Max posted right before this. The shape and proportions are remarkably similar.

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    Roof looks out of proportion to me. Maybe it’s just an illusion due to the camera angle or maybe the bottom of the window openings really do come up to your neck.

    • 0 avatar
      petezeiss

      That’s one of the hilarities of car show photos; they’re usually shot with consumer grade zoom lenses at the wide angle setting so you get extravagant styling pathologies rendered by funhouse glass.

      But since that usually gives stretched-edge barrel distortion and we’re pondering a vertical dimension in frame center, I’d say that it *is* a neck-high beltline.

  • avatar

    I like French cars but I hate those slit windows.

    • 0 avatar
      lOmnivore Sobriquet

      Moi aussi !
      The same for me…

      Peugeot and Citroën current designs are much more pleasing to my eye.
      Renault’s latest Clio looks like dried meat (on steroïds too), their latest Twingo (the entry proposal) a pathetic attempt to catch on the Fiat 500’s fine look (a steady success ’round here, for many years now.) Of course those renault are good cars, good values. but pmfff..
      It all seems like a lagging caricature of soviet-globalism, to me.

  • avatar
    ect

    I can be easily confused (an attribute my wife and daughter regularly exploit, but that’s another story….), but what aspect of its design says this is a CUV and not a minivan?

    Apart from what the manufacturer chooses to call it, of course.

  • avatar
    Stumpaster

    I think this is taking Dacia Logan platform one step too far.

  • avatar
    MBella

    Every time i hear the Renualt Espace mentioned I only think of
    “This is a Renault Espace, probably the best of the people carriers. Not that that’s much to shout about. That’s like saying ‘Oh good, I’ve got syphilis, the best of the sexually transmitted diseases!”

  • avatar
    Exfordtech

    I see significant GM Dustbuster in the profile. Would like to see some interior shots. Is the floor minivan flat? How far away is the bottom of the windshield from the front seats?

  • avatar
    RHD

    Mesdames et messieurs , je vous présente le nouveau et fantastique Renault Nissan Quest!


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