Saturday 20 January 2018

Kadjar to make a noise in crossover clamour

Renault Kadjar
Renault Kadjar

Martin Brennan

It has just arrived and Renault Kadjar is looking to take the number-one spot in the crossover division that its cousin Nissan Qashqai has made its own for so many years.

It is better looking, which gives it a sporting chance, but rivals will include the Hyundai Tucson, Skoda Yeti, Ford Kuga, and Kia Sportage. So the competition is fierce in this segment of the market, which is expanding at a remarkable rate. The expectation is that 30,000 of these crossover vehicles will be sold next year.

The Kadjar, below, is not just a pretty face. There is a four-wheel-drive version which made light work of a challenging off-road course with a powerful 130bhp 1.6-litre diesel engine. It pitched and rolled through mud tracks and steep inclines but got there in the end with the diesel engine giving a strong performance. The comfortable interior helped.

Prices start at €24,995 for the 1.2-litre version which pumps out a hefty 130bhp, and the 1.5-litre diesel with 110bhp on tap comes in at €26,790. The more powerful 1.6-litre diesel starts from €29,490 with the four-wheel drive starting at €31,490. The big seller is expected to be the 1.5Ci in Dynamique trim with Nav at €28,290.

There are four trim levels with standard equipment including electronic parking brake, front fog lamps, cruise control, and speed limiter, LED daytime-running lights, 7" screen, air-conditioning, Bluetooth and DAB radio. This is an excellent level of trim for an entry-level model and gives an indication of how much emphasis Renault is placing on it to become a success even if it is the newcomer.

Renault is also planning to launch a new Megane next year. A Grand Megane and a new Scenic are also in the wings.

Sunday Independent

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