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Teased on Facebook last week and spotted on the road yesterday, the Renault Fluence facelift has finally been launched in Malaysia. It has been less than a year since the C-segment sedan’s initial local introduction last May, but the updated model’s arrival had always been looming right from the very start.

After all, the facelifted Fluence was first unveiled for international markets at the end of 2012. It’s mostly a cosmetic upgrade, bringing the Megane-based sedan closer to Renault’s more recent models in looks. The front bumper, especially, features the brand’s current family look, mimicking that of the Clio and Koleos.

The rest of the car’s exterior remains the same as before, apart from the new wheel design (still 17-inchers, with a dual-tone look on the top model) and the use of LED tail lamps on the top-spec Dynamique variant.

Yes, Renault Malaysia has split the Fluence range into two: one that matches the sole pre-facelift model called the Dynamique, and a more affordable Expression variant with slightly reduced equipment. Prices start at RM108,888 for the Fluence Expression, up to RM119,888 for the Fluence Dynamique.

The two can be differentiated by their unique wheels and tail lamps as mentioned above, as well as the inclusion of LED daytime running lights on the Dynamique. Inside, the Expression gets standard fabric seats, while the range-topper gets upgraded to full leather upholstery.

Otherwise, the two variants share the original Fluence’s impressive equipment list. Six airbags, electronic stability control, Isofix mounts, TomTom navigation system, R-link touchscreen interface with reverse camera, dual-zone automatic air-con, auto lights and wipers, keyless entry and cruise control are all standard.

What’s under the hood stays the same as before too. The Fluence employs the previous-gen Nissan Sylphy’s 2.0 litre engine with 143 hp at 6,000 rpm and 195 Nm of torque at 3,700 rpm, paired with an X-Tronic CVT gearbox. Zero to 100 km/h is handled in 10.1 seconds, on to a top speed of 195 km/h. It’s claimed to average 7.7 litres per 100 km (13.0 km/l).

A five-year, unlimited mileage manufacturer’s warranty is standard across the range, while the Fluence Dynamique adds on the “5 inFluence” that includes free maintenance (parts and labour inclusive) for the first five years or 100,000 km.

Other aftersales perks include a one-year unlimited warranty on Renault Genuine parts, free car pickup service for scheduled maintenance and the availability of a courtesy car, should your vehicle be in the service station for more than 48 hours. There’s also Fixed Price Servicing scheme that’s active nationwide.

A new shade, Crimson Red, is available from launch – for all colour options and detailed equipment list, refer to our new car research website, CarBase.my.