Renault Megane convertible 2004 review
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They look great, but when it is time to put the fabric roof back up, some can look tired and tatty.
Mercedes-Benz started the folding metal-roof trend with the previous model SLK and SL. Peugeot joined in with the 206CC and 307CC and Daihatsu produced the Copen.
The latest coupe convertible is the Renault Megane.
Explore the 2004 Renault Megane range
The new Megane has an automatic folding metal hard-top that drops into the boot. The Karmann-designed roof also has a glass panel, but most of the harsh light can be blocked courtesy of a retractable screen.
The four-seat Megane drop-top starts at $47,990, against the Holden Astra convertible ($45,990) and the Peugeot 307CC ($49,990).
It has the same 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine as the Megane hatch with 98kW and 191Nm. A six-speed manual is standard. The four-speed automatic with manual shift mode is $2200 extra.
Standard equipment includes leather seats, cruise control, airconditioning, 16-inch alloy wheels, CD sound with steering-wheel controls and a glass roof panel.
An optional $1290 LX pack adds 17-inch alloy wheels and premium six-CD sound.
ON THE ROAD
CONVERTIBLES are either tuned for sport or comfort and it takes less than a minute in the Megane to discover comfort is the focus. The suspension is soft and the car tends to wallow over some bumps.
The Megane is a comfortable summer cruiser. Its metal top is well-designed and several passengers thought this Megane was a regular coupe until the roof started folding.
Owners of drop-tops with fabric lids can tell you that even with the roof up it can be noisy inside.
The black rag-tops can also heat-up the interior on really hot days when the sun is too bright to have the roof down.
Folding metal hard-top cars such as the Megane don't suffer from these problems. Even when the roof is down, the Megane is fairly quiet, even at highway speeds.
Its 2.0-litre engine lacks punch and torque. It can also feel harsh, especially through the pedal and works hard at 2800 revs when cruising at 100km/h.
It would be better with a manual, but our test car had an automatic that was not good. Sometimes the changes were smooth, other times it slapped into the next gear.
The auto also has an annoying habit of being quick to change down when coasting downhill.
At least there is a manual shift mode, so you can make it change when you want.
Cabin comfort is good, and seats providing adequate support.
The Megane is a four-seater and there is enough room for adult passengers, as long as it is not a long journey.
Range and Specs
|Dynamique||2.0L, PULP, 4 SP AUTO||$4,600 – 7,370||2004 Renault Megane 2004 Dynamique Pricing and Specs|
|Dynamique LX||2.0L, PULP, 4 SP AUTO||$4,700 – 7,590||2004 Renault Megane 2004 Dynamique LX Pricing and Specs|
|Expression||1.6L, PULP, 4 SP AUTO||$4,000 – 6,490||2004 Renault Megane 2004 Expression Pricing and Specs|
|Privilege||1.6L, PULP, 4 SP AUTO||$4,200 – 6,820||2004 Renault Megane 2004 Privilege Pricing and Specs|