The Renault Modus is a compact MPV (multi-purpose vehicle) that was first introduced for the 2004 model year and subsequently ceased production at the tail end of 2012. During its relatively short stint on sale, the Modus proved to be a fairly popular family car, but is Renault Modus a good car?
For what it is and how it costs these days, the Renault Modus is indeed a really good car. It does not try to be lavish, sporty, or luxurious, but rather does all the basics really well. It offers a nice choice of gasoline and diesel engines, a relatively contemporary design inside and out, and a safe and docile driving experience.
The reliability of the Modus can be good if you take proper care of it and if you only go for a relatively short mileage used example. There are some common issues we ought to discuss, so be sure to stick around to find out which.
Pricing is really attractive as the Modus lost most of its value over the years and is still depreciating rapidly. Practicality is excellent for the size as the Modus can easily transport four adults with lots of space for your legs and your head. The trunk is also really big while visibility and getting in and out of the car are also really good.
As mentioned in the intro, the Modus has quite a few powertrain options to go for. These start with the smaller 1.2L naturally aspirated 4-cylinder with either 65hp, 75hp, or 101hp. You can also go for a 1.4L 4-cylinder with 98hp or the largest 1.6L 4-cylinder with 112hp respectively.
Diesel engines are all based on the same 1.5L 4-cylinder block with three different stages of tune, 65hp, 82hp, or 106hp. All Modus models are exclusively front-wheel drive. As far as the transmission is concerned, entry-level models get the standard 5-speed manual while higher-end models are available with a 5-speed automatic as well.
Eficiency-wise, you can expect to get up to 35MPG with gasoline engines and up to 50MPG with the most efficient diesel variants. All in all, the Modus is a fairly efficient car with decently sophisticated engines which are going to be more than enough for most people.
Design and Driving Experience
In the design realm, you can easily say that the Renault Modus isn’t going to turn heads anytime soon, especially on the inside where it looks bland and fairly dated. The good thing is that there are some rather funky-looking interior colors to choose from and that the overall materials can feel really good if you go for a higher-end model.
The driving experience is as ordinary as one can get as the Modus is just a small MPV, not a sports car, not a luxury car. This means that it leans into the corners a lot and that it does not prefer to be driven hard. If you want a chilled family cruiser, the Modus is good enough, anything more than that is not going to happen.
Reliability and Common Issues
Reliability is a mixed bag with the Modus as it is difficult to say how reliable it is inherently. We can say that well-kept models do tend to fare well while slightly abused models tend to break much earlier. With that being said, if you go for a maintained model with decent service history, you are going to be satisfied with the Modus.
The most common problems with the Modus include water ingress, electrical problems, problems with the engine, problems with the transmission, and potential problems with the body and equipment.
Pricing and Practicality
Price-wise, the Renault Modus is now a fairly cheap car which means that one can be had for just a few thousand euros. However, if you want one that has been properly maintained and with not too many miles on the clock, you will easily have to pay double that amount which is to be expected.
Practicality is excellent for the car’s size and segment as the Modus easily sits four adults with a large trunk space and great all-around visibility. The Modus is really easy to get in and out of and it comes with lots of family-friendly features from the factory.
How Safe is the Renault Modus?
The Modus was designed with safety in mind and comes equipped with features such as multiple airbags, anti-lock brakes, and stability control. However, the exact safety features and ratings may vary depending on the specific year and model of the Modus.
In terms of crash test ratings, the Renault Modus received four stars out of five in Euro NCAP tests for adult occupant protection and three stars for child occupant protection. These ratings are considered good for a car of its size and class.
Should I Buy the Renault Modus?
If you are interested in an affordable, spacious, relatively safe, and easy-to-live-with compact MPV, the Renault Modus is a great choice. It may not have enough space as its larger Renault Espace counterpart, but you will hardly feel cramped in the Modus as Renault tried its best to maximize space in its rather small footprint.
On the other hand, if you are used to driving luxury cars and full-size cars, the Renault Modus isn’t going to feel on par with either. So, the best idea would be to find one and test drive it before you make up your mind as you can never really tell if you like the car or not before you step behind the wheel.
Is Renault Going to Return the Modus to the Market?
Ever since its discontinuation, Renault didn’t make any official statements about the Modus brand and if it’s ever going to return. We can easily conclude that the name Modus isn’t really all that popular in the world of Renault models which is why it’s hard to believe that the compact MPV Modus is ever going to come back.
On the other hand, Renault is known to return some of its older brand names back, but if that ever happens it is likely going to be a crossover or a small SUV.