Ashtrays: 2002-2014 Renault Espace

This is a peculiar one. There is a very large cubby inside which are two cupholders. One of them can hold an ash-cup.

That reminds me of a perfume package.

Much about the 2002 Espace impresses, especially in the top Initiale trim. The interior is coated in leather with contrasting stitching. It creates an air of luxury that is not flouncy or over-wrought. Renault went to a fair amount of trouble to make use of the dashboard volume. Not one but two large glove boxes lurk under the dashtop. The main masses and details hang together very well indeed too. The same goes for the back seats as well. One can see that Renault put on their thinking caps when trying to provide an alternative to the big, family saloon. Yet the car is only 4.6 metres long.

2002 Renault Espace smoker´s pack

The ashtray situation is where it all falls down. In front of the gear lever is a very promising large, glossy box with a nice wide lid. When you open it you are confronted by a disappointing ash cup with a flip-top lid. What

2002 Renault Espace smoker´s pack

would have been nice was for the option of a proper shovel-shaped, chrome coated metal ashtray as good as the one on the Renault 25. A lamp would also have been necessary and the Initiale doesn´t have this feature. Still, it would not have meant more than about two extra parts: a metal tray and some form of rubber or plastic grommet. Then the icing would have been on the cake.

We will have some more French luxury later on today.


Author: richard herriott

I like anchovies. I dislike post-war town planning.

9 thoughts on “Ashtrays: 2002-2014 Renault Espace”

  1. An acquaintance of mine, a car collector with quite a few rather precious pieces of Italian exotica in his possession, uses an Espace IV as family transport. And he loves it just as much as his vintage cars – he’s currently on his fourth Espace IV and hasn’t got a clue what to replace it with once diesel bans are actually implemented.

    The cabin ambience of those Initiales’ is something special indeed. Is there anything on the market today that’s even remotely as light and airy?

  2. My brother owned a Grand Espace of this generation. It was no Initiale, but of course the whole feeling of space and airiness was still there and always impressed me. The only let-down for rear passengers is the high floor, resulting in bent knees and thighs not supported by the seats. With few passengers this could be improved a little by moving the rear seats backward. Thus, the legs were more stretched out, like on the front seats.
    I’ve never been in a current Espace, but I’d bet it feels much more cramped inside.

    1. The view out from the Espace is worth the purchase price. It feels like a spaceship on wheels. I was very struck by the special ambience of the Initiale pack but even base models come with the fabulous sense of space.

  3. The Espace is certainly nice inside, but the Avantime was even nicer. Still, pressing the “open everything” button would render any ashtray completely useless and undo any hairstyle in short order.

    And those doors….

  4. Coincidentally, I have been a passenger in an Espace this weekend, central seat. It was only a short trip (20 minutes) at night, so not much to say. The view out of the large windshield and the glazed roof was still great, however. What struck me most however was the quiet and rather comfortable ride. With some better place to store one’s feet and legs, this could be a good transport also for longer journeys.

    1. Doesn’t the folding seat requirement really compromise comfort? That’s how it looked when I last peeped in one. A proper bench like a saloon would be a nice option and reasonable since Renault don’t sell a big saloon any more.

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