Renault Kadjar

Signature Nav dCi

110

Renault Kadjar, action front
Renault Kadjar, dashboard
Renault Kadjar, static front
Renault Kadjar, side static
Renault Kadjar, action rear
Renault Kadjar, boot 2
Renault Kadjar, rear seats
Renault Kadjar, static rear
Renault Kadjar, boot

IN life - and cars - sometimes simpler is better and more is less.

Look no further than the Renault Kadjar for proof you might like to save a little cash and end up with something you'd like a little more.

This particular car comes some way up the line in the company's Kadjar range, a stylish larger SUV that shares lots of hidden bits with the wildly successful Nissan Qashqai.

If you thought that practicality ought to rule in choosing a car for the family, think again. We all like to drive something smart and the Kadjar is certainly a looker, especially with £625 worth of flame red paint to show off its curves.

The good news continues inside, with a cabin so bang up to date it makes lots of dearer cars look a bit dowdy and old fashioned.

Especially impressive is an instrument panel with big digital speed readout that looks both elegant and unmissable enough to save points on your licence.

The satellite navigation screen is equally crisp and contemporary, adding lustre to an interior with nicely chosen mixes of texture and finish.

There's plenty of room in both rows of seats and a well shaped boot (but sadly not even a space saver spare beneath, merely a can of gloop and an inflator).

Big grab handles for the front seat passenger hint at the Kadjar's supposed off-road leanings, although how many will ever venture far from a metalled surface is open to doubt.

There are 35 version of the Kadjar, starting at £19,485 and topping out at £26,365. Engines take in two diesels of 1.5 and 1.6-litres (110 and 130 horsepower) and a couple of petrol units - 1.2 and 1.6-litres - with 130 and 165 horsepower.

Not surprisingly, the diesel is by far the more popular choice, despite the growing clamour to turn drivers away from this type of fuel.

You won't get near the official economy figure (72.4mpg in the test car) but a 59mpg dash readout after 600 mixed miles of motoring is still a likely clincher at ordering time.

While you pen hovers over the specification sheet you'd do well to take a look at the wheels your car would come attached to. In the case of the Signature specification car here it means big 19in alloys that look great but do nothing for the ride.

Indeed on some badly surfaced roads the ride turns uncomfortably brittle. Spend a little less on your Kadjar and it comes with smaller (17-inch) alloys that ought to improve things usefully.

So, less is more in the wheels department. Does it apply anywhere else on this handsome Renault?

Yes it does, with an automatic gearbox that takes the effort out of town work but is slow to react when you pull out of junctions and likes to hang on noisily to first gear around town. Try the manual gearbox, I'd say, and save a bit more cash.

FAST FACTS

Renault Kadjar Signature Nav dCi 110

Price: £26,545

Mechanical: 108bhp, 1,598cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via 6-speed automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 112mph

0-62mph: 11.7 seconds

Combined MPG: 72.4

Insurance Group:15

C02 emissions: 103g/km

Bik rating: 22%

Warranty: 4yrs/100,000 miles

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