Renault Espace

The Renault Espace is a five-door MPV, which was manufactured from March 1984 to September 2002 at Matra and is produced at Renault since October 2002. Of the up to seven seats in the interior of the Espace are five individually removable.

  • 3.1 Espace I ( J11, 1984-1991 )
  • 3.2 Espace II ( J63, 1991-1997) 3.2.1 Motors (1991-1997)
  • 3.3.1 engines
  • 3.4.1 Phase I ( 2002-2006) engines ( 2002-2006)
  • engines
  • engines
  • engines


The French automaker Matra developed in the years 1978 to 1982 MPV (Van) and brought them together in 1984 with the manufacturer as Renault Renault Espace ( = space ) for series production.

Originally, the vehicle for Talbot as the successor of the set end of 1983 Talbot Matra Rancho was designed, one belonging to the PSA Peugeot Citroën Group brand. As a result of liquidity problems Talbot -Matra took over the almost finished Renault van. However, Renault retained the original design virtually unchanged, which is why you will find in the original version of the Espace numerous parts from the Simca - model program, such as the headlights of the Simca 1307, which were maintained in spite of the brand change. The marketability of this type of automobile was initially often questioned, proved in the aftermath, however, a commercial success. Responsible for the design was Antonis Volanis.


Pioneering was not only the spatial concept of the Espace with seven seats, five of which were individually removed and thus the trunk could expand up to 3 cubic feet of cargo space, but particularly developed by the experienced in the plastic body Matra multilayer polyester construction.

The bodyshell of the Espace, consisting of sheet steel stampings the floor pan, the front bulkhead and roof frames and spars will first be spot welded and then completely hot-dip galvanized as a finished part. Temporarily attached to steel brackets prevent this deformation as a result of warming.

Hot-dip galvanizing complies with the Renault Espace not only the function of corrosion protection. The liquid zinc penetrates by capillary action through cracks and holes and soldered virtually all the individual components of the structure in addition to the spot welding. Thereby, the torsional stiffness of the Espace frame is improved and the sheet thickness was reduced in the compounds with the same capacity.

Then composite surface parts have been attached to the frame.

The small relative to the size of the vehicle vehicle mass allowed in a motorized by a gasoline engine with two liters and a maximum output of 81 kW (110 hp) good acceleration. Due to the conceptual model at 58 ° still unusual steeply raked windscreen of the favorable drag coefficient of 0.32 was made possible, which is currently moved to Train à grande vitesse associations (TGV ) to be at least in France. How could the two-liter gasoline engine with 81 kW (110 hp) will reach a top speed of over 175 km / h at moderate consumption levels in the equipment 2000GTS DIN 70300 of 6.8 liters per 100 km at 90 km / h, 9, 4 liters per 100 km at 120 km / h and 10.8 liters per 100 kilometers of premium fuel in city traffic.

With introduction of the fourth generation, however, was an extensive withdrawal of the previous design. The vehicle mass is determined by the all-steel body is much higher. The high unladen weight requires a tire with a high load index. This limits the selection at high cost excessively.

Manufacturing locations

By the third generation, the vehicles were manufactured in Matra factory in Romorantin- Lanthenay, department of Loir- et- Cher in the central French Sologne located.

With introduction of the fourth generation in 2002, the Espace is manufactured at Renault Sandouville plant in northern France, in which the Vel Satis and Laguna are produced.

Model History

Traditionally Renault appoints new model generations as Phase I, fully coated model revisions or facelift as phase II

Espace I ( J11, 1984-1991 )

The first commercially available from March 1984 -generation Espace was referred to internally as type J11. He brought it to a slow start on 191 674 approvals.

In early 1988, as part of the facelift changed the front end and extended the rear. Then came also added a four-wheel version for the model range, the propeller shaft ( carbon fiber with epoxy resin), the driving torque imparted from composite material to the rear axle.

Espace II ( J63, 1991-1997)

The 18 centimeters longer second series, also referred to as type J63, J11 was a development on the platform and was introduced in February 1991. Body and Interior have been revised. The J63 was an even flow better, more rounded shape and high-output engines. These were gasoline engines with four cylinders or six cylinders or supercharged diesel engines, thus increasing the top speed up to 190 km / h could be increased. The J63 was also available as a four-wheel drive version Quadra.

In mainland China, the second generation 1994-1999 rolled in the Sanjiang Renault automobiles under the market name Renault Univers from the tape.

From this generation of the Espace despite increasing competition 316 419 units have been sold.

In 1995, Renault presented the 10th anniversary year of the Espace a special version named " Espace F1" as part of a project study. Engineers Matra used to technology from Formula 1, such as the Renault V10 engine from the 1993 season with a displacement of 3.5 liters and about 595 kW ( 810 hp), through which the Espace in under 3 seconds to 100 km / h, and was accelerated to 200 km / h in under 7 seconds. The top speed of about 300 km / h The relatively unfavorable aerodynamics of the selected body broadening worked but rate limiting. Mass production was not planned and not have been possible in this way, since the engine could not be started externally and this was incorporated into the middle of the cabin. This had the interior temperatures of over 60 degrees Celsius and a volume of more than 100 decibels result.

Engines (1991-1997)

Gasoline engine:

4 cylinder

  • 2.0 8V, 76 kW ( 103 hp ); 1991-1997
  • 2.2 8V, 79 kW ( 107 hp ); 1991-1997

6 cylinder

  • 2.8 12V 110 kW ( 150 hp ); 1991-1997

Diesel engine:

4 cylinder

Espace III ( JE, 1996-2002)

Renault Espace (1996-2002)

Also offered from January 1997 third generation, the type JE, was developed by Matra as well as mounted and had as its predecessor, a plastic body on a galvanized steel chassis.

The JE was newly developed four- cylinder engines, which were installed transversely for the first time. There was petrol engines of 2.0 liter with 84 kW (114 hp) and 3.0 liter with 140 kW (190 hp). The V6 petrol engine from the type J63 ( with 12 valves) was still produced ( 167 hp ) to 1998 in a performance-enhanced version of 123 kW and then by a newly developed V6 with 3.0 liters, 24 valves and 140 kW (190 hp) replaced. At the same time also the CAN bus system was introduced in the Espace. The diesel engines have been upgraded over the production period, the engines ranging from 1.9 liter with 72 kW ( 98 hp ) and 2.2 liter with 95 kW (129 hp).

At the IAA 1997 in addition to the basic model of again extended by 27 centimeters Grand Espace was offered the ever got four Euro NCAP stars for exemplary safety as the first van. From this generation to September 2002 a total of 357 120 vehicles were manufactured. The Grand Espace type JE offers from all Espace the largest interior, but also has the largest outer dimensions.

At the vacation in the summer of 2000 a facelift was performed externally visible to the clear-glass headlights and changes in the model designations. Was there until then the remarks RT, RXE, Elyssee and initial, the prospectus contained in mid- 2000, the names Authentique, Expression, Privilege and Initiale. Also, the diesel engine has been redesigned from the prechamber diesel with 83 kW ( 113 hp ) has two common-rail diesel engines with 85 kW ( 115 hp) and 95 kW (129 hp).

The 2.0 8V engine with 84 kW (114 hp) was taken off the air shortly before the revision, the 16V engine (type: F4R ) was now standard engine and was produced until the setting in the fall of 2002 along with the 2.2 dCi. The production of the 3.0 V6 24V engine already ended in early 2002.

In the fall of 2001, a work based on the type JE four seater coupe was presented with the plastic body, the Renault Avantime. Its production was discontinued after 18 months following the bankruptcy of Matra in spring 2003.


Espace IV (JK, since 2002)

Renault Espace (2002-2006)

The fourth generation of the Renault Espace with internal designation JK came in October 2002 on the market.

The first van in this version received the highest rating of five stars in the Euro NCAP crash test. With the Espace IV, the Espace is available from the start as Grand, however changed practically everything:

  • This model is no longer produced at Matra, but at Renault.
  • It no longer has the oriented lattice frame lightweight skeleton body of previous models, but a classic, self-supporting steel body that is decorated with attachments of different materials ( plastics, light metals): To limit the vehicle mass, for example, aluminum doors and front fenders made of polycarbonate. The rear flap is comprised of a sheet molding compound (SMC).
  • Due to the now integrated in the back seat belts, the seats are much harder than the prior models.

Nevertheless, the Espace (as of 10/2009) often apply even after seven years of production as a contemporary Van, in terms of ride comfort and noise level as a reference.

Phase I (2002-2006)

In the trim levels Authentique, Expression, Privilege and Initiale were six different engine types to choose from.

All versions already include as standard equipment, for example an air-conditioning, automatic spring applied parking brake, fog lights, power windows on all windows, a switchable, automatic door locking after start and automatic door unlocking in the event of an impact, as well as a car radio.

Engines (2002-2006)

The engine range includes three petrol at the beginning and three diesel engines. The top model has a 3.5 -liter six- cylinder petrol engine, which was supplied from the Renault - Nissan daughter and installed in the Nissan 350Z. The 3.0 liter diesel engine comes as a supplier of Isuzu engine. This machine was a 3.0 V6 CDTI also fitted in a Renault Vel Satis, the Opel Vectra C, Opel Signum 3.0 TiD and as in the Saab 9-5. Up to a revision in 2006, the unit is considered to be thermally sensitive. In addition, defects in the high-pressure pump and shifts the pressed into the cylinder block cylinder liners are striking.


Phase II (2006-2010)

In April 2006, the Espace was awarded with the phase II a revised model, called the facelift. The trim levels are called Expression, Dynamique, Privilege or initial. In addition, special editions are limited available such as Tech Run, Navitech, PGA Edition, 25th Edition or Celsium.

In addition to the elimination of shortcomings to individual components, the externally visible model revisions:

  • Elimination of the previously available, rotating front seats.


  • Clear glass headlights with xenon and curve light
  • Amended mount the fog lights
  • Radiator grille with two instead of three lamellar
  • Repositioned rear lights, with a different form of flashing light diffuser.
  • New and revised diesel engines with 4 valves per cylinder, balancer shafts to reduce free mass forces, maintenance-free, classic timing chain for the valve train and piezo- electrically controlled diesel injectors from the Renault -Nissan joint venture of Cleon, in Normandy south of Rouen located. Most diesel engines now feature a contemporary diesel particulate filter, at Renault with the marketing name FAP ( Filtre à particules, French for ( diesel soot ) particulate filter ) named.
  • Anchoring system of the rear individual seats
  • The 6-speed automatic transmission.
  • Introduction of the navigation or communication system Carminat 3
  • Redesigned center console

* sold as TCe 170 since 09 /2009. TCe = Turbo Control Efficiency

Phase III (2010-2012)

In October 2010, the Espace IV underwent another facelift ( phase III). The trim levels were initially limited to Celsium and initial. Since the summer of 2011, the Alcantara version is offered.

Changes from phase II:

  • Clear glass headlights with LED daytime running light strips
  • Takeover of the radio generation of Scenic and Megane with Bluetooth and USB Input Factory
  • TomTom navigation instead of the previous CD and DVD Navigation
  • Enlarged in height rear view mirror
  • Deletion of the V6 models

TCe = Turbo Control Efficiency

Phase IV (since 2012)

In July 2012, the Espace was further model refinement.

A characteristic feature of this design is the revised front with a new grille, revised bumpers and a larger logo. In addition, the lower part of the headlight was darkened.

Timeline of the model variants