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  • P11D Value: £25,00
  • BIK band 2018/19: 28%
  • SUV
  • 1.5-litre diesel 115hp/260Nm
  • Performance: 11.2 secs/117mph
  • Economy (On test) 54.7mpg
  • CO2: 117g/km

What is it?

It’s an SUV based on the same platform as Alliance partner Nissan’s Qashqai’s and arguably the package is better looking with a touch of French flair.

It’s pitched against the likes of SEAT’s Alteca, Ford Kuga, Kia Sportage and Peugeot 3008 as well as the Qashqai.

The Renault was launched originally in 2015 and there’s a single bodystyle fitting into the Renault range above the Captur.

There was a range of updates introduced towards the end of last year with further with some small styling changes, while inside there were some changes to climate controls and integrated infotainment system.

What we have for you here is something of a taster as we are hoping to have the Kadjar in for a loner term test from the end of this month.

 

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Why would you want to drive a Renault Kadjar?

  • While feeling pretty much like the Qashqai on the road, the Kadjar is better looking, offers more space and costs less to buy.
  • T Kadjar engine line-up has been overhauled with all versions gaining emissions-reducing exhaust particulate filters. Two new 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol engines – 138bhp and 158bhp – have replaced the old 1.2 and 1.6 units bringing improvements in performance and efficiency.
  • The 1.5 dCi diesel which we tested gained a series of upgrades for 2018 with improvements in power, efficiency and refinement.
  • The Kadjar is offered in a choice of four trim levels. The range kicks off with the Play, which gets 17-inch alloy wheels and rear parking sensors as standard.
  • Next step up, the Iconic adding sat nav and 19-inch wheels; and above that are the S-Edition and the top spec GT Line.
  • Chief among the Kadjar’s interior updates for 2019 is the seven-inch touchscreen, and its tile-based menu system that’s familiar from the current Megane. It’s less playschool-looking than the interface it replaces, but still not a patch on a VW Group system. Peugeot-Citroen’s touchscreens are easier to navigate too. But at least here, unlike in those cars, you still get physical climate control dials instead of infuriating sub menus buried in the bowels of the screen.
  • The rear seats fold to reveal a flat-silled 1,478-litre boot – almost 1,000 litres bigger than that offered in five-seater mode. That’s par for this class.
  • Great fuel economy from the 1.5 dCi.

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What might put you off a Renault Kadjar?

  • Not the most exciting of interiors but seats are comfortable and the driving position offers adequate adjustment.
  • Chimes and beeps. What is supposed to be a musical notification that the key is ‘in contact’ with the vehicles, does become an annoyance as does the incessant beeping from the front and rear parking sensors.
  • Some controls should be knobs – and that goes for volume controls on the sound system
  • Wind noise from the door mirrors at motorway speeds 
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Verdict on the Renault Kadjar

There are various engine configurations from which to choose from the low-powered 1.3 140 TCe petrol right up to 1.7-litre diesel all wheel drive although we were happy enough with the middle of the range 1.5 dCi TCe.

Plenty of power and torque from this model and the fuel economy was particularly impressive.

Although there’s no seven-seat option, families are likely to There’s no seven seat options, but this is still a very practical family car with plenty of space in the rear and a number of useful storage spaces.

The boot, at 472 litres, it’s larger than the Qashqai and expands to 1,478 litres with the seats folded.

There is a mix of hard and soft-touch plastics in the front while Carplay and Android have been integrated which rather rendered the built-in TomTom LVE sat nav redundant.

Handling and ride quality remain much the same as before, there is more body roll when compared to a hatchback, for example, but certainly not excessive and there is decent feel through the steering wheel.

On top of the £25,500 OTR price, our mode came with metallic paint at an additional £650 plus a £150 emergency space wheel.

For the SME, the Kadjar offers a really good amount of space and practicality in terms of carrying people and cargo. Better for the long haul rather than tootling around town and that fuel economy is particularly pleasing.

The plan is to bring further updates over the coming months.

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What else should you know?

  • While the two brands claim that only 60% of parts are shared between the two models, Renault said that 95 per cent of what you see and feel in the Kadjar is completely new.
  • The top of the diesel is now a 1.7-litre option which comes with a six-speed manual, and is the only Kadjar that is offered with four-wheel drive.
  • Renault has listened to customer feedback with the latest versions showing changes such as backlit window and mirror controls, one-touch opening on all four windows and larger door bins to hold a 1.5-litre drinks bottle.
  • There is off road capability with the 1.7-litre diesel and while crossovers like the Kadjar aren’t true 4x4s it can handle a good degree of mud plugging.

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