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The Renault Fluence arrives at a time when the Japanese makes are battered and bruised by the high yen while the Europeans make hay with the lower Euro. We find out if the favourable exchange rate has sweetened the automotive deal for the rest of us...

25 Feb 2011

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Like all previous Renault models, the last generation of Meganes suffered from the same lacklustre quality that crippled them against the Japanese makes. Well, in the past decade, the French have learnt that a good drive isn't enough and if they're to have any measurable success, they'll have to offer a complete package.

The latest Fluence like the Koleos, proves to be an international meeting of minds. While the car was designed in France, the cars headed for our sunny island are actually produced by Samsung Motors in Busan, Korea. The company also sells the car in Korea as the re-badged SM3. At the same time, the new sedan benefits from the Renault-Nissan alliance by way of its Nissan sourced six-speed CVT box.

Exterior

Though the Fluence is meant to fill the gap left behind by the four door Megane, it looks far different from the current generation Meganes. In all honesty, that isn't necessarily a bad thing. For reason that whenever a manufacturer shaves cost by limiting the amount of design input, they always end up with something that looks well, odd.


A case in point would be the Nissan Latio. As a hatchback, the car looks well proportioned though its attractiveness is dependent on the audience. When it came to the sedan, Nissan approached the project in much the same way they tackled the 350Z's transformation from coupe to roadster. Although instead of chopping off a portion this time, they decided to graft a boot to the rear of the Latio hatch. What they ended with was, well...exactly what they did. A Latio with a boot grafted on.

While that won't bother most in our practicality obsessed society, it does assault the sensitivities of design aficionados among us.
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Car Information

This model is no longer being sold by local distributors

Price

: -

Engine Type

:

4-cylinders in-line

Engine Cap

:

1598cc

Horsepower

:

84kW (112 bhp) / 6000 rpm

Torque

:

156 Nm / 4400 rpm

Transmission

:

6-speed (A) CVT

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)

:

11sec

Top Speed

:

185km/h

Fuel consumption

:

13.2 km/L

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