Renault Trafic Review 2024

Renault Trafic At A Glance


+Refined and comfortable, L1 capable of carrying three Euro pallets, new 2.0 dCi from 2019 is quiet and punchy, 2022 update improves safety.

-Can't match its key rivals for outright payload, technically not an all-new van rather a thorough revamp of the previous model, base model has no air-con even in 2022.

The latest generation Renault Trafic has been around since 2014, but rather than rest on its laurels Renault has given it a series of updates not once, but twice. It's not common for any vehicle to have two facelifts throughout its life, but as the Trafic is still a competitive model, why throw out the recipe?  

In 2019, the Ford Transit Custom rival gained some new 2.0-litre dCi diesel engines replacing the old 1.6-litre units, plus an overhauled interior. In 2022 the engines were tweaked again, while the exterior look was sharpened up and the cabin further updated to keep it modern. 

The most important revision from Renault's perspective is the availability of new active safety kit. This is is because, in 2021, Euro NCAP heavily criticised the Trafic and said it is not recommend for its "general lack of safety systems". In response, the 2022 Trafic can be specced with automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, blind-spot monitoring and traffic sign recognition. 

The Renault Trafic is still is offered in numerous configurations, which include panel van, platform cab and nine-seat minibus. Renault also offers a ‘Ready to Work’ range of optional racking systems which are fitted before delivery, meaning owners who need specific kit for work can pick up their new van from the dealer and get right to business. 

The Trafic is available in two lengths and two heights and can carry items of up to 3.75 metres (L1 version) or 4.15 metres (L2) in length. Carrying capacity ranges from 5.2 to 8.6 cubic metres, while the load area has a simple-to use through-hatch that allows the loading of planks or pipes.

It can be ordered with an optional interior overhead rack that can carry pipes or a ladder. The van also has 20 anchor points and half sized panel protection as standard. Even the smallest L1 model is capable of carrying three Euro pallets, while the maximum permitted payload weight ranges from 1079kg to 1281kg, depending on size and engine choice.

Under the bonnet, the Trafic was launched with a range of 1.6 turbodiesels with 90PS or 115PS, while fuel economy for both peaked at an official 43mpg. The best engine, however, is the twin-turbo 1.6 with 120PS or 140PS and economy of up to 47mpg. For heavy work the twin-turbo engines are best, with most of their torque available from just 1250rpm.  

The 1.6 dCi diesels were phased out in 2019 and replaced with 2.0 dCi engines as part of an extensive midlife update - these are more efficient and quieter, while the larger engine means even better low-down torque. These engines became 'Blue dCi' units in 2022, with four outputs options ranging from 110PS to 170PS. 

The interior was extensively improved in 2019 with a new dashboard and much more supportive seats. That changed again in 2022 with Renault bringing in a new infotainment screen and rotary dials like you get in the latest Clio. These changes make the Trafic a much stronger rival to the likes of the Transit Custom.

The cabin is reminiscent of the current Renault car range, with decent quality materials and a comfortable, MPV-style driving position. Renault has also given significant emphasis to the ‘mobile office’ theme, with a dash mounted cradle for a mobile phone or tablet PC. The centre seat can also be transformed into a laptop holder and there is a built in, removable clip board that can be directed at the driver or passenger. 


Driven: 2019 Renault Trafic dCi 145

Renault's medium size van gets an important midlife update, with new engines, improve refinement and better tech. Will the new and more comfortable Renault Trafic be good enough to rival the best in class, Ford Transit Custom?

Read our first drive here >>

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Ask Honest John

Road debris has damaged my van - who is liable?

"Road debris has caused over £900 worth of damage to my Renault Trafic. It happened on the A48, close to junction 49 on the M4 motorway in Wales. A tree and its branches were on the road and I could not avoid the debris (driving over it). Later that day I decided to go to my local mechanic for him to have a look for any damage, just in case. On the way there the alarm for low fuel came on, where there should have been over 3/4 of a tank of fuel there after filling up the evening before. The mechanic on looking had found that the fuel tank bolt holders had been ripped off. I have dash cam footage of the incident. Do you think I could claim against the agency that's responsible for the "
For the claim to be successful you'll need to show that the damage was caused by the negligence of the agency that is responsible for the upkeep of the motorway. South Wales Trunk Road Agent (SWTRA) is probably responsible for managing this section of road but they can't be held automatically liable for every problem that occurs. That said, the agency is legally required to have a system in place to ensure the road is inspected on a regular basis and that all practical steps are taken to maintain the safety of the road. Given the level of damage to your van, I think it would be worth contacting the agency and demanding an explanation.
Answered by Dan Powell

What should I look for when buying a used van?

"I've found what looks like a great deal on a van (2017 Renault Trafic, 20,000 miles, £14,250). Is there anything in particular I should be looking out for? Any alarm bells or questions to ask? "
Is the van being sold online or have you spotted it at a local dealer's forecourt? If it's online, is the person a private or trade seller? There are many scams circulating with online vans. And the first red flag will be the price (which will be much lower than other vehicles for sale). Alarm bells should ring if the seller asks you to pay a fee upfront or insists on bringing the vehicle to your home or meeting you somewhere like a lay-by or supermarket car park (scammers don't want you to know where they live, obviously). Regardless of who the seller is, they should meet you at their home address or trade premises. If buying privately, the seller should have the V5C logbook and be happy to show you photo identification - the home address and ID should both match the name and address on the V5C. If the seller claims they are selling on behalf of a friend/family relative or the V5C logbook details don't match the address then walk away and find another van to buy. The Renault Traffic is a popular van and there are thousands for sale. There really is no need to take a risk on a van with a questionable history.
Answered by Dan Powell

Should I get a manufacturer extended warranty?

"I bought my Renault Trafic Sport from new in 2019, with a three-year business + warranty , meaning they keep me on the road if something was to go wrong. I have been quoted £720 by my local dealer with the need to join RAC or AA for recovery for around another £160 (their quote) for a two-year extension. The van 28,000 miles on the clock. What are your thoughts and suggestions?"
I would suggest shopping around. There are lots of independent warranty providers and you may get a cheaper deal or better level of cover with someone else (you can always challenge your local Renault dealer to match the price). The key bit about an extended warranty, however, is what's listed in the policy exclusions. For example, a warranty product that excludes 'wear and tear' will effectively exclude 90% of the things that will go wrong on a 3+ year old van.
Answered by Dan Powell

Replacement door for my Renault Trafic

"Recently a bike rack jumped out and dented the rear passenger door on my 2015 Renault Trafic. Turns out a new door is just shy of £1000, but second hand doors are around £100. However, 2015 ones are not available, though there seems to be plenty of used 2014 doors. I was wondering if it would fit on my 2015 Renault Trafic as a straight swap?"
Renault launched a new Trafic van in 2014 and I'm not sure the doors are interchangeable between the two models, given they use very different body structures. You can see the two models here:
Answered by Dan Powell
More Questions

What does a Renault Trafic cost?