Facelifted Renault Espace focuses on business-class luxury

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The latest Renault Espace will have important new interior features when it reaches the market in the spring of 2020. Renault has introduced the luxury-focused updates for this “lounge on wheels” on the back of the success of the model’s top trim level, Initiale Paris, which has accounted for more than 60% of Espace sales since the current car was introduced in 2015.

Renault says that the sophisticated materials, ergonomic changes and new technologies inside the new Espace offer drivers and passengers a best-in-class interior. Beginning with the dashboard, the Intens and Initiale Paris versions of the high-end crossover offer a full digital display on a customizable 10.2in screen, including an immersive 3D navigation option. The driver display screen is supplemented by an HUD.

The new Espace – which is still available in five or seven-seat configurations – also features the Renault Easy Connect ecosystem, which comprises a set of apps such as My Renault, the new Renault Easy Link multimedia system and connected services such as automatic updates and remote vehicle control.

Renault says that the Easy Link system offers a brand-new, user-friendly and customizable interface akin to that of a smartphone. Its 9.3in portrait screen is slightly angled toward the driver, expanding the dashboard, and gives the passenger compartment a more modern look. Included are a phone system compatible with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay as well as a satnav with Google address search, fuel prices and traffic information in real time.

The top Initiale Paris trim is said to offer business-class comfort. Highlights are double-stitched Nappa leather upholstery, 10-way power-adjustable massaging, heated and ventilated front seats and laminated side windows for the highest level of acoustic comfort. New types of upholstery are offered across the whole range, with a choice of various materials such as fabric, mixed and Riviera leather, and a new black color scheme.

The center console has been redesigned to be more stylish and more convenient, featuring a new closed storage area which includes cup-holders, two USB plugs and a jack plug on the right of the gear lever. The electrically controlled e-shifter lever leaves a space for smartphones under the console, which contains a wireless inductive charging pad. There’s a rotating dial to access Easy Link and a new Auto-Hold control knob. This feature keeps the vehicle stationary when the parking brake is not applied. For improved ergonomics, the ventilation dials now feature a digital display for adjusting the temperature.

Finally, the Espace boasts an audio upgrade from long-time Renault partner Bose, which has enhanced its premium audio system for the new car to provide a more immediate and clearer listening experience, regardless of where passengers are seated in the vehicle. With 12 more powerful speakers, the system is said to provide a three-way sound system like that of a high-end home hi-fi system. There is now a choice of five acoustic environments that can be adjusted to each type of sound and the number of passengers.

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