There's seldom anything particularly exciting or glamorous about a minivan. But that doesn't mean their producers can't keep trying. Enter the new 2012 Renault Scenic, and its big brother, the Grand Scenic.

Being European MPVs as opposed to American minivans, the Scenic – and even the larger, seven-passenger Grand Scenic – are typically smaller than the big family-haulers we're used to on this side of the Atlantic. But with facelift Renault has just given the line, they're also considerably sleeker-looking than the vehicles we're used to seeing lined up outside the local elementary school.

That much comes down to the new lights and bumpers front and rear, elements that Renault has packaged with an upgraded interior and a raft of new engines and technologies that set the new Scenic range apart from the one it replaces. A pair of low-emission engines – a 115-horsepower, 1.2-liter turbo and 110-hp, 1.5-liter diesel – join a range of powertrains topped by a 140hp 2.0 mated to a CVT and a 160hp diesel paired with a six-speed manual.

The Scenic family is also the first to incorporate Renault's new lane-departure system and hill-start assist, with a special Bose model (similar to the one found in the Koleos) topping the spec sheet. The new Scenic debuts at the Brussels Motor Show this week before hitting showrooms in 40 countries around the world.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 3 Years Ago
      completely off point...but I owned two R15 and an R16, the R16 had plush seats like a Lazy Boy recliner.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Good for napping while driving??????????
        • 3 Years Ago
        God I still have weird erotic dreams about the 15 and a 17 Gordini I almost bought once
      • 3 Years Ago
      Condoms prevent mini-vans.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Wish the diesel version would come here, would make a fine replacement for our sad excuse for a Nissan minivan.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Better looking than the Mazda ... makes me want to be a dad :P
      • 3 Years Ago
      i dont want a mini van with a sleek new look. we carry kids, crap, and pets in the friggin thing, with trash all over the floor, and spilled soda and milk shake stains, all over the seats, and the smell of barf in the carries bags of fertilizer, groceries, and half the soccer team, with muddy shoes.....there is used gum stuck to the sides of the back seats, and last weeks leftover starbucks, is in the holder, in the front. these minivans, are used in the real world, of the urban masses, and are not a fashion statement for the wall street-trendy artsy-fartsy crowd. the beast thing you can do with these vans, is give it 4 wheel drive, and a powerful diesel engine.
        • 3 Years Ago
        Agree. I love our van. A van is for 8-9 beings to ride in, mostly in comfort. My van looks nice and we get 27mpg hwy, 23 city. The best thing is, we can haul a whole lotta stuff in it. We've hauled (not at the same time, usually with back seats down) 8ft sheets of plywood, boxes and boxes and boxes of stuff, several bikes, a dishwasher, easy chairs, assorted furniture, a lathe, large computer desk....the list goes on and on. It's a 6cyl 380 with a great trailer hitch to haul even more stuff, and we can haul a large pop-up camper with all the fixins with ease. Our blow-up mattress fits perfectly for two in the back and it's very comfy. You'd never fit half of that stuff in the 'new van' shown above. You couldn't even get most of the stuff in because the back end is too small. No way this is a van. What a crock.
      • 3 Years Ago
      Rented the diesel version once when in Europe and not a bad ride. Not what I would call speedy but a capable and comfortable car that got great MPG and handled itself well enough on the Autobahn.
      • 3 Years Ago
      good looking couple
      - v o c t u s -
      • 3 Years Ago
      I find it really weird that we get all this Renault news on here. I know that even though Autoblog is mainly by the States, for the States, we do see stories on foreign-market cars from time to time and I enjoy that. I respect that. Why does Renault get such a hefty slice of that "misc section"? Make your European auto news a pie and you end up with a few little slices for Citroen, Peugeot, SEAT, Skoda... Most FIATs... Don't get me wrong, whenever a new Alfa is shown, I want to see it, but Renault?! eeeehhhhhh o_0
      • 3 Years Ago
      Buy American
        • 3 Years Ago
        no worries, Renault doesn't sell in the US. They don't look bad for a minivan, but I don't see how these are sleeker than some other models that are sold here.
      • 3 Years Ago
      "Being European MPVs as opposed to American minivans, the Scenic – and even the larger, seven-passenger Grand Scenic – are typically smaller than the big family-haulers we're used to on this side of the Atlantic." - Autoblog Utter crap. The Scenic is a C-segment MPV, which granted is now the favoured format in Europe. However, the Espace nd Grand Espace are Renault's "full size" MPVs.
        • 3 Years Ago
        thats wrong Renaults MPV lineup small Renault Senic (172inch) Renault Grand Senic (180inch) medium Renault Espace (184inch) large Renault Trafic passenger (189inch) extra large Renault Master passenger 9seater (199-219inch) Renault Master passenger 17seater (244inch) europens large MPVs are as large as US MPV... Renault Trafic/Master, VW Multivan(208inch), VW California(193inch), Mercedes Viano (188-207inch) etc...
      Vivek Bara
      • 3 Years Ago
      The new Renault Scenic really seems to be a sleek and stylish considering it's a mini van. Could be that this brings in change in the mini van segment and even the commercial is cool just like the car. For more on the commercial, video review of the car and images refer to
      Richard Castillo
      • 3 Years Ago
      They look like Scions. No way can you shape the vehicle like that with out sacraficing space.
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