To lure high earners from BMW or Mercedes, Renault upgrades its flagship talisman in two luxury versions. They have many luxury extras as standard, which cost somewhere else surcharge.
French executives, dentists and lawyers or other so-called high-earners have had a long dry spell. At least if you would like to move a limousine from your home country. But the French manufacturers watched for decades how the German premium trio Mercedes, Audi and BMW also divided the lucrative company car business on the left bank of the Rhine. Now the wind could change: Renault and Peugeot have rediscovered the upper middle class. And also offer special versions that meet the requirements for a particularly fine interior or more muscles under the hood.
This applies, for example, to the two Talisman versions "Initial Paris" and "S-Edition", both available from December, both with the four-cylinder turbo gasoline engine with 165 kW / 225 PS and 1,8 liter displacement. With this, Renault responds to the equally strong Peugeot 508 GT, which, however, has to cope with 200 cubic centimeters less displacement. Both have in common that they compete in the 4,80 meter class, in which, for example, the Mercedes E-class is at home. By contrast, the price level between 41.000 and 45.000 Euro is more in the range of a similarly equipped C-Class.
Rather sporty or rather elegant and comfortable? Renault covers both moods with the newly launched top sedans, they differ only in details, even the data are almost identical. The newly developed engine has a gasoline particulate filter and thus does not have to turn around in front of any impending restricted areas. The practical consumption calculated according to the new standard is 7,2 liters on 100 kilometers. For a strong petrol engine a passable value. The same engine can also be found in the family large-capacity sedan Espace, in the sports car Alpine A 110 or the GTI rival Megane RS.
At the Paris initial, a long list of extras is standard for the price of 42.150 Euro: full-LED headlights, electronically controlled suspension including all-wheel steering, high-beam assistant with automatic dimming in oncoming traffic, keyless entry, Bose audio system with eleven speakers, navigation system and head-up display.
Once seated, more standard amenities reveal themselves. The seats are covered with nappa leather and have quilted seams. Instead of the hard plastic material of the simpler Talisman models, the paneling of the lower dashboard has the softness test by thumb pressure thanks to foam feeding. On the vertical 8,7 inch screen various functions can be activated via touch screen. It also serves as a monitor for the rear view camera. All these subtleties give the flagship the desired premium ambience. The mentioned extras can also be found in the S-Edition (starting at 45.000 Euro), there with attributes such as red stitching and aluminum pedals.
On the tour, at the gates of Paris, there are many highways around the famous Chantilly Castle and the accompanying racecourse. A terrain for cruising and gliding, in which the comfort mode is active. Of course, the smoothness of the comparatively small engine is not comparable to a six-cylinder. The work of the pistons is audible, but not intrusive. This changes in the sport position, in which the seven-speed dual clutch spreads out her steps. The spin-up provides the sound desired by fans. The Renault engineers renounced the artificial noise games like bubbling barking when downshifting, which have become fashionable in some sedans.
An experience is the speedy traversing of long curves thanks to the mitlenkenden rear wheels. After a bit of getting used to it, you notice how economical the steering wheel can be moved, since the rear wheels start pointing in the same direction as the front wheels starting at 60 km / h. Even a simulated evasion and lane change succeeds without great cranks. Advantage when parking: Here, the rear wheels pivot up to 3,5 degrees opposite, the turning circle is a good one meter lower. A fine thing, which is usually only found in much more expensive cars (eg Porsche Panamera, BMW 7er).
In sum, local company car users could well persuade their fleet managers to buy a Frenchman, such as the noble edition of the Renault Talisman. Optics and technology are right, even if some highlights of the German top dogs (eg automatic traffic jam function, active lane keeping systems) are not yet available. If that were not the all-important question of professional Pfennigfuchser would be: how is it with the loss of value on resale or leasing return? Previous big models from France such as the Renault Safrane or the Peugeot 607 did not please their owners in this discipline.