Renault launched the Fluence in India in 2011 with variants in both petrol and diesel versions. The Fluence has been on Indian roads for some time. Renault sometime back launched the top end Diesel version E4. Many thought that the Diesel version lacked the features that were available on the E4 Petrol.
The growing demand for diesel cars off late and a strong customers feedback forced Renault to introduce the top of the line Renault Fluence with an all new heart (engine). Renault just recently launched the Fluence E4 with the 1.5 dCi 110 engine.
The K9K dCi engine family is one of the most versatile engines jointly developed by Renault-Nissan Alliance. The K9K 1.5 dCi engines power a lot of car models from Renault and Nissan worldwide. These cars include the Renault Duster mini SUV and the Nissan Evalia MPV that would be soon launching in India.
The 1.5 dCi CRDI belongs to the same K9K family of engines but is the latest generation Step 2 diesel engine, that has 1461cc of capacity and makes 110 PS @ 4000rpm of power and pumps in a healthy 240Nm of peak torque @ a very low 1850rpm.
Logically speaking this is just 4ps of extra power produced than the Step1 1.5 dCi engine that makes 106PS. We drove the New Renault Fluence E4 Diesel on the scenic ECR roads from Chennai to Pondicherry to bring you the experience first-hand. Read on to know everything about the New Renault Fluence E4 Diesel.
We at CarDekho had reviewed the Renault Fluence Diesel just a few weeks back and you can read our comprehensive road test on this link http://www.cardekho.com/road-test/renault-fluence-e4-diesel-fluent-performance-65.htm. The Renault Fluence has always been a very outstanding sedan in terms of overall design. We experienced this ourselves when people watched it with awe during our earlier test. So it is a good thing that Renault has not redesigned or altered its design.
The Renault Fluence Diesel was a fun car to drive when we tested it but the only grouse that we had with it was the lack of outright performance. The initial burst or pick-up in simple terms was missing. Power build up took its own sweet time and only when the turbo kicked in 2300-2500 rpm did the car came to its true pace.
Now you would be surprised, because we definately were, as the initial power delivery is extraoridnarily quick and there is no evidence at all of any turbo lag which could be felt in abundance on the Step 1 dCi engine.
Moreover, the Fluence with the new engine plonked in feels a bit more refined too. Our drive started off from Chennai and en-route to Pondicherry we were to pass many small crowded roads of villages and towns and the beautiful ECR highway which would be a good test for Renaults latest offering.
Fluence E4 Diesel engine. Shift to first and the car chugs ahead in a smooth linear fashion. The power delivery is rapid and instant as compared to the Step 1 older engine. On busy traffic roads you need not constantly play with the gear shifts to stay in the power band but the new engine is much more relaxed and at your service at low speeds. The Step 1 Diesel engine lacked this.
The New Renault Fluence E4 Diesel has a 6 speed manual gear box which is the same transmission that is present in the Step 1 engined Renault Fluence. Gear shifting is slick smooth as before and we did'nt experience any false shifting. Handling of the Renault Fluence is taut. The steering feedback is encouraging and perfectly weighted for perfect driver’s control. There is some amount of body roll that could be experienced but that is due to the large length of the car. The Renault Fluence has 2703mm of wheelbase while it is 4618mm in length, making it the longest car in its segment.
The Renault Fluence E4 Diesel drives on the same 6.5 X J16 ten spoke alloy wheels with 205/60 R16 Tubeless Radials as the previous version. The suspension set up is also untouched with MacPherson type with coil spring, stabiliser bar and double acting shock absorber in the front and Trailing arm type suspension with coil spring and double acting shock absorber at the rear. In lay man’s language this suspension set up is a fool proof setup for Indian driving conditions. The suspension is tuned for a very comfortable ride quality and passengers in the rear are benefitted the most. The Fluence irons out the bad roads with ease and provides the best suspension ride in the segment.
The ride quality being top class at any given speeds has been the Renault Fluence's virtue and this quality is also passed on to the New Renault Fluence. The Fluence is a very good cross country performer and now the new engine on the Fluence is making it a very good city sprinter too.
On the outside everything is the same with the chrome package still in place making the Fluence look rich. On the inside also, the cabin remains the same, with the dashboard looking as elegant as ever and the fit and finish being of high standards.
The inclusion of the gear shift indicator on the instrument cluster is a welcome addition. The gear shift indicator flashes a upward or downward arrow indicating to the driver to upshift or down shift at varying speeds and RPM that the car may be running at.
Renault had recently got the E4 Diesel with all the same equipment level as on the E4 Petrol and now the New Renault Fluence E4 comes with all the bells and whistles. The equipment list of the sedan is long but we'll name some of them for you. You get Leather seats with leather clad steering and gear shifter, Cruise Control, Bluetooth Mobile connectivity with wireless audio streaming, Auto Rain Sensing Wipers, Auto Headlights, Auto Fold wing mirrors, Keyless entry (lock/unlock), Push Button Ignition, Smart Card (Key), Electro chromatic rear view Mirror (Auto Dimming), steering mounted controls, USB and AUX connectivity, Dual Zone AC with rear AC vents, Rear centre folding arm rest. In the Safety aspect, the New Renault Fluence E4 Diesel comes with front two airbags, side chest level airbags, ABS with EBD, Brake Assist, ESP (Electronic Stability Programme), ASR, Engine and transmission guard etc.
Renault claims a fuel efficiency of 20.4 kmpl on this new dCi Diesel engine which in real world figures means a fuel economy of close to 14.5kmpl in mixed driving conditions. Let’s see what the competition has in store for the New Renault Fluence E4 Diesel. The New Renault Fluence E4 being priced at Rs.15.20lakhs makes the the Toyota Corolla D4D Diesel priced at Rs. 15.23lakhs its nearest rival followed by the Skoda Laura 2.0 Diesel priced at Rs. 16.05lakhs and lastly the VW Jetta 2.0 Diesel priced at Rs. 16.40lakhs all ex showroom Delhi.
Better late than never seems to be the mantra that Renault has been using lately after it launched the Fluence E2 with absolutely no features initially but soon realized the folly and upgraded it to the Fluence E4 Diesel and now with the engine upgrade and spot on pricing makes the New Renault Fluence E4 Diesel one of the best buys in the market if you are looking for an fully loaded Diesel Sedan. The Renault Fluence with the older Step 1 engine also continues to sell but just in the E2 diesel variant along with the E2 and E4 Petrols.