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Old 12th July 2011, 14:28   #181
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

I spotted two Fluence on road yesterday in Blr, one white and the other dark blue. One thing about this car is that it has some road presence and premiumness to it. I could easily spot it from a distance and the Renault badge confirmed it. However reading the specs need to really see if the smallish hearts can cruise this barge swiftly!!


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Originally Posted by raul View Post
Spotted the Fluence at the Hyderabad and Mumbai airport today, they have displayed it airside in its own little installation. Lot of curious onlookers, everyone tried opening it but was locked. It looks solid, like a workhorse, a capable entrant to the segment however the pricing or features need to be rethought to build traction.

Moving curious onlookers to buyers is going to be an uphill batter at the current price feature set, however its better than any C segment so Renault should probably target the top end c segment buyer with this.
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Old 12th July 2011, 19:46   #182
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

Spotted a Fluence parked on my street in Mumbai suburbs over the weekend. White, probably a diesel (drove by, so no chance of a closer look). First impression was that it is SMALLER than what I expected, possibly because in the adverts and in pics on this thread, it seemed like a big car to me.
The Renault logo in front looks really cheap (Logan association maybe?) and the beige steering wheel is horrendous. For some reason this car doesn't exude class commensurate with the pricing and the positioning ("Redefining Status" if I'm not mistaken).
Has anyone bought a Fluence yet on T-BHP? Yet to see an ownership review but I may have missed one.
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Old 12th July 2011, 21:11   #183
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

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Originally Posted by noopster View Post
Spotted a Fluence parked on my street in Mumbai suburbs over the weekend. White, probably a diesel (drove by, so no chance of a closer look). First impression was that it is SMALLER than what I expected, possibly because in the adverts and in pics on this thread, it seemed like a big car to me.
The Renault logo in front looks really cheap (Logan association maybe?) and the beige steering wheel is horrendous. For some reason this car doesn't exude class commensurate with the pricing and the positioning ("Redefining Status" if I'm not mistaken).
Has anyone bought a Fluence yet on T-BHP? Yet to see an ownership review but I may have missed one.
If the steering wheel is beige, then it should be the petrol Fluence.

Youíre right; the car does look big in pictures, but not much in flesh. I feel the problem with some Renault cars is that it does not look European (or rather French) at all.
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Old 14th July 2011, 09:20   #184
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Had a chance to sit in the Fluence when it was on display at Ambience mall in gurgaon. It is not that big inside, pretty much similar to the 98 megan I had in the uk. In fact the fluence is built on the current megan platform which is in the compact car category, mainly sold as a hatch in most places I think, and competing maybe vs the City or Corolla, etc. So even though this is a long car and therefore pretty spacious, I wouldn't expect it to feel as big as say a Civic.
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Old 16th July 2011, 00:36   #185
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

Saw a Fluence in the metal at Mumbai airport. White colour with beige interiors (so the petrol variant I presume). I had not liked the way it looked in the pics, but to be honest, it didn't look that bad in person, especially in white. Interiors looked decent but the doors were locked so couldn't get a closer look.
So a nice enough car (looks wise anyway) in isolation, but I think it'll struggle to make a dent in the Civic/Altis/Cruze/Laura books.
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Old 16th July 2011, 00:39   #186
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

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Originally Posted by razor4077 View Post
Saw a Fluence in the metal at Mumbai airport. White colour with beige interiors (so the petrol variant I presume). I had not liked the way it looked in the pics, but to be honest, it didn't look that bad in person, especially in white. Interiors looked decent but the doors were locked so couldn't get a closer look.
So a nice enough car (looks wise anyway) in isolation, but I think it'll struggle to make a dent in the Civic/Altis/Cruze/Laura books.
Totally agree,when i had seen it in pics,i was like,what an ugly staid looking car.
Then a few days ago,i spotted one in black and i was like Wow,she looks hot,and has way better road presence than the competition.
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Old 16th July 2011, 02:20   #187
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

I just don't think what these guys are thinking. Why only one variant per fuel type? It is plain weird! Also sharing an engine with the (comparatively) puny Micra. I guess they are after the market targeted by the 1.4D Altis, but will they make the mark with their unknown A$$ vs the Toyota's? They want to be seen as a premium brand and then turn up with this engine!

Someday, they'll take India more seriously.

Or maybe someday I'll TD this car and my opinion will turn on it's head

I do like how it looks in the pics though.
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Old 16th July 2011, 06:42   #188
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

There is some degree of overall disproportionate looks though individually may be fine. Even the rear lamps looks like they belong to somewhere else. Some kind of an assembled from different part bins kinda feel. This is what I got from seeing it and not from the pics.

Views are subjective.

Last edited by rajeev k : 16th July 2011 at 06:43.
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Old 17th July 2011, 18:22   #189
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

Just happened to see fluence yesterday on Hebbal flyover. The car looks good and once again a great review in detail by our GTO.

Sorry Mods:- Forgot to paint black to the number board.
Attached Thumbnails
Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review-fluence.jpg  


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Old 19th July 2011, 12:04   #190
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Originally Posted by Fusion2006 View Post
In fact the fluence is built on the current megan platform which is in the compact car category, mainly sold as a hatch in most places I think, and competing maybe vs the City or Corolla, etc. So even though this is a long car and therefore pretty spacious, I wouldn't expect it to feel as big as say a Civic.
Thought it was bigger than the Civic and Corolla...
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Old 19th July 2011, 12:24   #191
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

Saw a white Fluence in the Chennai showroom in Anna Salai, a white Fluence near Ultadanga, Kolkata and a black Fluence at the Bangalore airport in the last one month. Looks great in black and has awesome presence too.
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Old 19th July 2011, 12:44   #192
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Originally Posted by manualManuel View Post
Thought it was bigger than the Civic and Corolla...

Indeed, they say it is the longest in its class. But I was referring more to the feeling of space inside the cabin. Somehow to me the Civic and Corolla Altis just feel more spacious, but maybe that's just me!
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Old 19th July 2011, 17:24   #193
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

Whatever you say about it , it is the safest among this class . Please refer to euro ncap ratings . Personally though I wont prefer it owing to the 'power factor ' .
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Old 21st July 2011, 15:17   #194
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I had to drop off my Vento for its monsoon checkup this morning and when I was waiting for my friend to pick me up for the drive into work, noticed a new Renault showroom just around the corner from VW.

Looked pretty impressive from outside.
Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review-img00057.jpg

Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review-img00058.jpg

This sign in the window was really too tempting for a petrolhead.
Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review-img00060.jpg

So after lingering outside for about a while, thought I'd just stroll in and say hi to the good folks in the showroom.

But hark! What do I find?

Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review-img00056.jpg

Chairs stacked up in ugly fashion. Workmen in paan-stained clothes and laughing loudly carrying the obvious remnants of last night's launch party out into waiting tempos.

Looks even worse next to the shiny black Fluence parked in the show window.
Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review-img00055.jpg

I strolled in a little hesitantly, since I'd been waiting at the doorway for about 15 minutes and nobody had shown the slightest interest in me. A couple of important-looking guys wearing ties and talking busily on their bluetooth earpieces (I HATE those things!) gave me a glance then forgot all about me.

When I entered, the important-looking men glanced up briefly. They nudged each other and one unlucky guy (probably the juniormost) lost out and came to attend the customer (for want of a better word).

I gave him my brightest smile and told him I was here to see the Fluence (Duh! Not like they have a huge lineup that I can pick and choose from anyway). He pointed to the black one out front, "That is the petrol" and then waving vaguely towards the back of the shop, "The diesel is there".

Oh-kay. I was looking at him but it seemed the conversation was over. So I prodded him, "May I...ummm...see the car?"

"Of course! Of course!" Ushered me towards the flashy automobile. "But I don't have the keys."

I raised my eyebrows for an explanation but none was forthcoming. An apology I suppose was asking for too much. So I just stuck my nose to the window and peered in.

"It's an automatic" I observed, completely superfluously, since I know everything there is to know about the car thanks to T-BHP. But hey- he's the one selling it!

"Yes. The petrol is automatic, the diesel is manual."

I asked him if the company had any plans to launch the petrol in MT. Anything, really, to keep this still-at-birth conversation going. He swelled up and said something like, "A lot of people are asking the same thing. The company is not saying anything. But take it from me, it is unlikely they will launch it for quite some time."

Oh it speaks. And how. "And what about the engine specs?"
"The what?"
I half-expected him to reply, no sir this engine doesn't wear specs . But I repeated my question patiently.

"Oh... engine specs: the petrol engine is 2 litres, the diesel is 1.5 litres"

And...? I went on looking at him expectantly. No response. Tried again, "What about BHP?"

"Ah...the petrol is 136...sorry 138. The diesel is...the diesel is...106"

One of the noisy workmen breezed past. I couldn't help but stare a little. The dude sees my look and offers an explanation, "We had the launch party yesterday. Cleaning up..." mumble mumble.

I asked for a brochure, "We don't have any" came the prompt reply. But a minute and a half of rummaging in the drawer produced a manual, inexplicably of the Fluence Petrol alone. I didn' bother asking about the diesel's manual.

"Price list?"
"I don't think we have one...(more rummaging)...oh here it is!"
Voila..a crumpled and creased A4-printed and xeroxed sheet appears. I thanked him and asked, "Is it OK if I take a look at the diesel?" He acquiesed with a big look of relief and went back to his important-sounding phone calls on the bluetooth earpiece.

By now I was thoroughly pissed off, not that I would ever show it.
Scanning through the pricelist quickly, I realised it was the Jay Vijay Motors guys who own this showroom - same ones who gave me such a blissful () experience when I booked my Vento. Why am I even surprised?

One look at the diesel Fluence and all thoughts of bad service went out of head: it is really quite a looker in beige:
Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review-img00059.jpg

For those interested OTR prices (PMC registered) are 16.82 lac for the petrol AT and 15.13 lac for the diesel MT.

For the extra near-2 lac, you get a 6-speed CVT (instead of a 6-speed MT that looked quite delicious), rain-sensing wipers, beige leather interiors instead of black fabric ones (I liked the black more) auto headlamps, rear parking sensors, cruise control with speed limiter (whatever that means), rear sunblinds (pretty cool), electrochrome RVM (I suppose this means auto-dimming), USB/AUX ports (diesel only gets AUX) and additional side-chest level airbags in front. All this from the cyclostyled price/feature list. 16" alloys standard on both (OE fitted tyres were Conti- nice!).

Am not sure the start-stop, access card, bluetooth etc. is offered only on the petrol but tend to think so. The diesel also misses on auto-climate control which in my book is unforgiveable.

After checking out the beige beauty, headed back out front. The dude was trying his best to avoid eye contact but I smiled cheerfully and waved to ensure I had his attention. "I'll call you", I mimed using an imaginary telephone. Nobody tried to get my name or contact details.

My prediction is that Renault will sell zero units of the petrol in Pune (the diesel will sell because we are what we are!) Think about it: a man in his mid-30s, dressed in branded semi-formals, English-speaking, fairly knowledgeable about cars walks in -WALKS IN- to your showroom a day after it's formally inaugurated...and this is the best you can do?!!

Not only will I NOT buy a Fluence from these guys, I will do my utmost to discourage everyone whom I think is veering towards this car away from it. At least with the Polo/Vento, you have some strength in numbers. What option do I have if I buy a Fluence and get stuck with guys like this for A.S.S? I would highly recommend waiting for BU Bhandari (or someone else) to open another dealership in the city- after all that's what has put the VW guys on their toes: service next door was MUCH better.

Edit: The dealer is Renault Shivajinagar (Jay Vijay Motors), Opposite PMC, Off JM Road, Pune 05.

Mods, if this doesn't belong in this thread, please move it appropriately, thanks!

Last edited by noopster : 21st July 2011 at 15:19.
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Old 21st July 2011, 19:50   #195
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Default Re: Renault Fluence : Test Drive & Review

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Originally Posted by noopster View Post
I had to drop off my Vento for its monsoon checkup this morning and when I was waiting for my friend to pick me up for the drive into work, noticed a new Renault showroom just around the corner from VW.
Thanks Noopster for sharing the experience. Hilarious indeed, and quite sad as well. Itís quite an easy task for a dealer to tarnish the brand image (especially when there is nothing much to start with).


Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
For those interested OTR prices (PMC registered) are 16.82 lac for the petrol AT and 15.13 lac for the diesel MT.
OTR of 16.82 lakhs for the petrol AT and 15.13 lakhs for the diesel MT!!. Reminded me of the argument (in the New Fiesta review thread) that the Fiestaís price is closer to that of Fluence. Its nowhere close actually.
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