The first of these changes sees a tweak to the familiar naturally aspirated 1.6-litre powerplant. The changes include improved power and torque outputs of 77kW and 148Nm. Efficiency has been improved, with a claimed fuel consumption of 7.7 litres/100km and carbon emissions of 180g/km.
There have also been a few cosmetic changes, with the incorporation of the new Renault family front end as featured on the new Clio and upcoming Mégane models, as well as the addition of a more tapered headlamp design.
There are a few creature comforts inside the cabin, including electrically assisted power steering, air conditioning, a trip computer and height-adjustable driver’s seat. A radio with CD, MP3 playback and Bluetooth connectivity is available as an aftermarket dealer fitment.
Standard safety features include a driver’s airbag along with an anti-submarining hump in the seat cushion. Other important impact safety features include a deformable magnesium steering wheel frame, door padding, metal shield in the shell under the steering wheel to reduce the risk of lower limb injury as well as a collapsible brake pedal.
The New Kangoo Express also comes standard with the latest ABS system, integrated with electronic brake distribution and automatic activation of the hazard warning lamps during emergency stops.
As with the outgoing Kangoo, there is a dashboard-mounted gear shift, with the handbrake’s design taken from the aviation industry, which increases stowage space between the two seats. There are several storage bins throughout the cabin, one of which is an A4 document storage area and penholder on the dashboard. The central storage compartment allows the driver and front passenger keep essential items close at hand.
Being a business-orientated vehicle, the 800kg payload and 3m3 utility volume should provide an adequate carrying and loading capacity. The rear swing doors are designed for heavy duty use and can be opened up to 90 degrees with the internal latch in place. Stability has been improved, with the 2.7-metre wheelbase and front- and rear-track dimensions of 1.52 metres and 1.53 metres respectively. The MacPherson-type suspension up front and programmed deflection coil-spring suspension at the rear have been optimised for load-carrying capabilities.
The New Kangoo Express retails for R184 900 and comes with a 3-year/60 000km service plan, Renault’s 5-year/150 000km mechanical warranty and 6-year anti-corrosion warranty. Service intervals are pegged at 15 000km.