2013 Renault Fluence CVT 1.6 from Saudi Arabia
Smooth, inexpensive, basic car with low petrol consumption
A few of the decorative lights around the speedometer went out at around 65,000 km.
Trunk release gets activated randomly after water damage.
This is the first car I have ever purchased. Before this, I only drove cars that were shared in the family. I purchased this in June 2017 from the authorised reseller in Jeddah. I paid 22,000 riyals ($5,867) freshly serviced (including new battery) and in very good condition inside and out with 59,000 km. I knew that if you buy from an authorised agency, then the price will be at least 10% higher, but the car will be in much better condition than what is usually found on Haraj.
Renault does not sell many cars in Saudi Arabia, but you do see them much more than Peugeot. The value of this car falls like the water from King Fahd's Fountain. This car cost approximately 45,000 riyals when new in 2014, I purchased it for 22,000 riyals in 2017, and now in 2018 it is worth maybe 13,000 riyals.
So why did I buy it? My goal was something that cost less than 23,000 riyals, less than 4 years old, driven less than 100,000 km, and in very good condition. This removed almost every car from the list, so I thought about just getting something old and cheap instead. But one day I rode in a Renault Fluence, and when going down Madinah Road I realised that it was quite smooth for a small car. I talked to the driver and that started the whole process.
After owning it for about one year and 15,000 km, here is what I have found:
- Handling is basic, and the body makes creaking sounds going over very uneven surfaces, like entering a ramp to basement parking.
- The continuously variable transmission (CVT) can be annoying, as acceleration can be very slow and uneven. Sometimes the car will shake for a short time when speeding up or slowing down. It can take a long time for the CVT to respond to pressing the accelerator. At times this can be a safety hazard, like when trying to turn onto a busy road or the car in front of you hitting the brakes just when the CVT shifts down and you accelerate. But in manual mode, the car is much faster at the cost of higher petrol consumption. I have heard that many CVTs are known for failing at around 120,000 km.
- You get dual airbags, anti-lock brakes, electric power steering, and Bluetooth standard.
- Fuel consumption is good at 6.3L per 100 km with me driving 60 km each working day in city and highway traffic.
- Servicing is cheap.
- It is the size of a Corolla but cheaper than a Yaris.
- Highway ride is good for a small car. I had no issue or back pain when driving from Jeddah to Madinah (415 km), spending only two hours there, and then driving back. Many people here think that because Renault is French, that the cars will overheat. This may have been true before, but the temperature stayed the exactly in the middle during this whole trip. On the way there, the outside temperature was 38-40 C.
Overall I am glad that I am satisfied with my experience.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 25th February, 2018
26th Nov 2018, 12:25
Owner's update: The car now has about 87,000 km and is trouble-free. I have only had periodic maintenance done (at the certified used car dealer), put in a new battery, a new set of tires, and new wiper blades. Brake servicing will have to be done soon. Fuel consumption has dropped to as low as 5.6 L/100 km when driving gently and without A/C (it is very pleasant in the evenings).
I have often thought about replacing this car as it is not exciting at all to drive, but it does its job so well that I have not gone through with it.