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Renault expands Kadjar line-up

25.07.2016

The Renault Kadjar has been a great success story for Renault, despite our tough economic conditions the model still sells well and has shown that the brand can also make impressive mid-size cars and not only small vehicles. The range is based on the brilliant Nissan Qashqai platform however the Nissan had an advantage, namely an automatic variant. Renault has now added automatic and smaller diesel models to the local range which should make the Kadjar a very tempting proposition indeed.

Tell us about the new variants

The Kadjar range now benefits from the inclusion of the brands Efficient Dual Clutch automatic gearbox in both the 1.2 litre petrol and 1.5 litre diesel models. There is also a manual version of the new diesel for those who prefer swapping cogs by themselves.

The diesel

Speaking of the diesel, the 1.5 litre unit in this guise produces 81kW/260Nm (250Nm in the EDC) which proves enough for overtaking and for day-to-day driving while the fuel returns are impressive with a claimed consumption figure of 4.6 litres/100km while emitting claimed 120 g/km of CO2. Both diesel variants are 4x2 without a 4x4 option however the larger 1.6 diesel is only available with all-wheel drive.

How is the EDC gearbox?

Renault is fairly new to the dual-clutch gearbox game and has shown that their EDC gearboxes are slightly behind those from other manufacturers. The two EDC gearboxes however, do feel improved in the Kadjar, with the six-speed unit working particularly well in the diesel variant and while the petrol version still has that moment of hesitation I still feel it works better than a CVT transmission and will prove more efficient than a torque converter.  

In the 1.2 litre petrol variant there is what is called a ‘wet clutch’ EDC which is a seven speed while in the diesel there is a ‘dry clutch’ unit which happens to be a six speed. The torque on the diesel model has likely been limited to 250Nm in order to preserve the gearbox.

Driving the new variants

I have to say that the 1.5 litre diesel manual does make a great case for itself, with good low-end torque, better value and excellent consumption. The two new automatic models will likely give customers what they want from the Kadjar range which is a good-looking SUV that is easy to drive and won’t break the bank at the pumps.

Verdict

If anything, driving the Kadjar again reminded me of how competent these cars are and who far the brand has come of late. Now that there are automatic variants I feel that the Kadjar pips its Qashqai cousin to the post with superior looks, a better automatic offering and a product that simply feels more fresh and in-tune with the times

Warranty and service plan

The Kadjar line-up comes standard with a 5-year/150 000km mechanical warranty and a 5-year/90 000km service plan.

 Pricing

1.5 (81kW) Turbo dCi 6-speed Manual                       R 394 900

1.2 (96kW) Turbo petrol EDC 7-speed Auto                R 399 900

1.5 (81kW) Turbo dCi EDC 6-speed Auto                   R 414 900

Article written by Sean Nurse
25.07.2016
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