Bought with damaged engine. Repaired and now using!
Some pointers for potential buyers/owners of the Espace.
The Espace can be frustrating and fun for various reasons:
They have a mixed reputation for reliability; some owners have no problems, but others have constant problems. Personally, I have found my Renaults to be cheap, mostly reliable, well appointed cars. Some things to consider though:
Avoid Renault dealerships; too expensive on labour and parts costs, and they tend to replace rather than repair!
Find a friendly cost effective garage or learn to work on them yourself! You will need to buy some specialist tools and equipment, but mine have already paid for themselves (on the Laguna!), and have now been put to good use on the Espace.
Some faults, whilst frustrating, can be quite simple to find and fix! Later Renaults need the 'CLIP' diagnostic connector and software for your computer. This will usually point you to electrical faults and give you a fighting chance.
Ignore the recommended service intervals for the following:
Cambelts; change at 35k on diesel and 50k on petrol. Change the dephaser and water pump at the same time! Always change the tensioner and rollers. They shatter if not done! A lot of snapped cambelts at around 60k +!
Change the oil and filter at 5k for diesels and 10k for petrols.
Change auto trans fluid annually! Despite being supposedly 'filled for life', this will help keep the gearbox healthier and reduce the possibility of niggling faults!
Change road springs after about 75k. Snapped springs can rip tyres and damage brake pipes!