The two electric compact Renault Megane E-Tech and MG4 arouse the interest of our readers and the editorial staff of Automobile Propre. To the point of making the face-to-face meeting that Pierre Desjardins and Maxime Fontanier invite you to discover on video unavoidable. Their conclusion is not necessarily the one they would have liked to give you.
The models tested
Faced with the MG4 topped with a black roof and presented in a high-end Luxury version, we opposed the Renault Megane E-Tech EV60 220 hp Super Charge in its intermediate Techno finish. For a similar height of around 1.50 m, the Chinese electric compact imposes itself in volume, with 9 centimeters more in length and width: 4.29 x 1.86 m, against 4.20 x 1.77 Mr.
Their main point in common is a useful energy capacity of around 60 kWh for their NMC (nickel manganese cobalt) type lithium-ion batteries. In terms of motorization, one could hardly find more different.
Embedding a permanent magnet motor, the MG4 is a propulsion. It delivers a maximum power of 150 kW (204 hp), for a torque of 250 Nm. Conversely, that of the Megane E-Tech has a wound rotor. And it is to the front wheels that it transmits its 160 kW (220 hp) and 300 Nm.
The size of the rims, in 20 inches, gives a very particular look to the French, compared to the MG4 which is content with a 17-inch mount.
Better received in the MG4
Wider by almost 10 cm and benefiting from a slightly longer wheelbase (2.71 against 2.69 m), we expected a better distribution of space on board the MG4, to the benefit of the occupants. The use of a double tape measure only confirmed our impressions by switching from one to the other of the 2 compacts.
« There’s no comparison, we are much better at the back of this MG4, both in terms of the width of the bench seat, and the legroom and headroom “says Pierre Desjardins. The absence of a central armrest enhances the comfort of the person seated in the middle. In the back of the electric Renault Megane, tall passengers will feel cramped, especially since they won’t be able to fit their feet under the front seats.
With larger glass surfaces, the brightness is also better in the Chinese compact. No handle to hold on to bends? Maxime Fontanier sweeps away this remark expecting to see them appear soon.
Victory on the big screens for the Mégane
Also at the front, the elbow room for passengers seated in the French compact is worse than that of its Chinese competitor. ” Almost 8 cm difference. It is enormous ! It’s limit a different category “says the editor. However, he let himself be seduced by the 2 digital screens in the Megane ” better quality and much larger » : « We are full of praise for the Google system which marks spectacular progress at Renault compared to the generation before ».
On the other hand, Maxime Fontanier awaits him at the turn when he evokes materials ” pleasing to the eye » : « There is not a big difference in finish with the Chinese ».
The driver of the Megane will appreciate the comfort of the upholstery which only offers electric adjustment for the lower back. In the MG4, the connected buttons will allow everyone to find a suitable driving position in this place, “ from the basketball player to Passe-Partout ».
The two tablets are less flattering, with a home GPS that lacks a trip planner. ” It is on the multimedia that the Megane makes the difference, but not in terms of habitability or driving position sums up our test journalist.
Chest: Having the biggest is not necessarily the best
By comparing the figures, the trunk of the Renault Megane appears to be a winner: 440 or 1,332 liters with the backrest of the bench folded, against 350 / 1,165 l. However, it is much less practical, because it is too high, with a high access threshold, and does not form a flat floor when switching to utility format.
The MG4 spares the backs of its users at this level. The base of its trunk is larger in both dimensions, and, above all, the areas behind the 2 wheel arches are hollowed out, facilitating transport across the width of a folding stroller, for example. Do not look for a ski hatch: this equipment is not offered on either of the two cars in our comparison.
Those who discover the 2 cars together will find it easier to select the driving mode using a button on the steering wheel on the Megane E-Tech EV60, compared with the manipulations to be carried out on the central screen of the MG4.
Fans of the game of the 2 paddles behind the steering wheel to quickly manage the power of regeneration should also appreciate the French at this level. On the Chinese, it’s more complex, to the point of only dwelling on it exceptionally. Neither of the 2 cars offers e-Pedal mode until the vehicle is immobilized. It will therefore play the left pedal to stop at a stop.
A new good point for the Renault concerning the immediate triggering of the regenerative braking by lifting the foot from the accelerator. ” On the majority of Chinese cars that I have been able to test, there is a small lag time between the moment you lift your foot and the moment you feel the regenerative braking », oppose Maxime Fontanier.
Both in the MG4 and in the Megane, visibility through the interior mirror appears disappointing. Except that the latter hides an asset. By switching the usual lever to obtain the night mode, it becomes a screen, reproducing the images of the rear camera.
Two models of responsiveness
The feel at the steering wheel is better in the MG4: the steering is very, and perhaps even too, direct on the Megane. You can feel the dynamism. The progressiveness and the good calibration of that of the Chinese are more relaxing, more pleasant. Just as his suspension is ” more supple, a bit more buoyant “, communicating a feeling of ” controlled comfort ».
The car does not crash so far in the turns. With its new platform, MG has made big strides over its previous electric car models. On larger rims, the Renault is firmer.
The Chinese compact wins braking issue, easier to dose, while providing an attack as convincing as the French. The 2 cars are very responsive when entering a fast lane.
« What is surprising is that we have a Megane which remains a good French car, with good suspensions, excellent steering, good braking, an engine that works well, etc., and yet it does not dominate for so clearly the MG4. In areas where the French were the benchmarks, the Chinese understood how to “Weighs Maxime Fontanier.
The MG4 offers more on fast lanes
As standard, the MG4 offers all driving aids which are continuously updated free of charge. Certainly, it will still be necessary to adjust some at a minimum and each time the vehicle is started. The support device between the lines lacks finesse, seeming to seek the right position, with a tendency to shift slightly to the right.
To have similar systems on the Megane, you have to pay ” an option at 1,700 euros ». At what rate, « It’s probably worth wiping the plasters a bit with the Chinese compact.
On expressways, the latter is more sensitive to side winds. However, it is quieter than the French in terms of air noise, but not concerning rolling noise. ” It hums a little bit “, even admitted the editor-in-chief a little earlier, while driving in town.
Fuel consumption: Renault advantage
In a video, Renault justifies for its electric Megane the choice of a wound motor (Patent FR3106243) for the absence of rare earths and the possibility of modulating the current passing through the rotor. This would have the effect of limiting consumption, especially at high speed. This is probably the reason that explains its relative sobriety compared to the Chinese.
Our duo was able to observe a saving of around 2 kWh per 100 km, with slightly higher performance. Without being heavy on the accelerator, the MG4 posted an average consumption above 19 kWh/100 km. At a stabilized speed of 130 km/h, it is even necessary to count 27-28 kWh/100 km. ” The minimum will be 18 kWh/100 km “, believes Maxime Fontanier.
That is to say ” 2 to 3 kWh above what MG announces. That’s the main flaw in this car, its energy efficiency “. According to the manufacturers, the MG4 in the Luxury finish has a combined WLTP range of 435 km, compared to 450 for the Renault Megane E-Tech EV60. That is a difference of 15 km on paper. In reality, it will be higher, around 30-40 km. On the motorways, the recharging stop will be scheduled every 200 km for the first, against almost 250 km with its competitor.
The best endowed for recharging is…
In its Super Charge version, the Renault Megane E-Tech EV60 is not the best equipped when it comes to filling up the battery. It has an AC charger with 7 kW of power, compared to 11 kW as standard for the MG4.
On the DC terminals, it is also the latter that does best: 135 against 130 kW. We have even been able to observe peaks at 142 kW on Tesla superchargers, and a curve capable of clinging to 140 kW until just over 50% energy in the pack.
In addition, the Chinese compact is equipped for V2L (Vehicle-to-Load = From the vehicle to the device to be powered). This device, which is also found on the Korean Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6 and Niro EV, makes it possible to repair another electric vehicle or to connect power tools, to light a stand or a stage, and even to supply electricity. to itinerant shops.
Note that the French compact also exists in an Optimum Charge version which swaps its AC charger for a 22 kW device. The price reflects it. Already there…
Overtaken by the MG4
Guaranteed for 7 years or 150,000 km, the MG4 in Luxury high-end finish theoretically starts at 35,990 euros. Which would make 30,990 euros by applying government aid. However MG has the habit of indicating on its website the prices of its vehicles with the bonus deducted. And as it must be hard coded, on the day of writing this article, the MG4 appears at 28,990 euros.
Do you really want to know the price of the Renault Megane E-Tech EV60 220 hp Super Charge in Techno intermediate finish? Truly ? Beware of the cold shower: from 44,500 euros (39,990 euros with the bonus deducted). And without being with equivalent equipment.
Let’s have fun adding a few that are standard on the MG4 but optional on the French: heat pump = 600 euros; driving assistance pack = 1,700 or 1,200 euros whether or not combined with augmented vision. The delta between the 2 models then goes to around 11,000 euros.
« Renault, we’re really going to have to make an effort, because we would like to drive French! We love the Megane, but we will have to lower its prices for the year 2023 “Concludes in the form of a call Maxime Fontanier.
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Renault Megane electric EV60 test: what real autonomy on the motorway?
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