Renault goes big on

SUVs

Renault Captur, 2017, front
Renault Captur, 2017, side
Renault Captur, 2017, rear
Renault Captur, 2017, interior
Renault Captur, 2017, dashboard storage
Renault Captur, 2017, glovebox
Renault Captur, 2017, cup holder
Renault Captur, 2017, armrest
Renault Captur, 2017, instrument panel, eco light
Renault Captur, 2017, armrest, open
Renault Captur, 2017, rear seats
Renault Captur, 2017, boot
Renault Captur, 2017, boot, underfloor
Renault Koleos, 2017, front, action
Renault Koleos, 2017, front
Renault Koleos, 2017, side, action
Renault Koleos, 2017, rear, action
Renault Koleos, 2017, interior
Renault Koleos, 2017, rear seats
Renault Koleos, 2017, head rest
Renault Koleos, 2017, boot

SUVS large and small are on the way from Renault as the French car maker revamps the Captur crossover and returns to the big 4x4 scene with an all-new Koleos.

With the mid-sized Kadjar already proving popular, it gives Renault a trio of fresh-faced models in the booming crossover market.

The Captur has been smartened up with sharper body lines and takes on Renault's new look for SUVs while the Koleos is a brand new model pitched against the likes of the Land Rover Discovery Sport.

But it's on the inside where Renault is pushing the boat out and both models are very family focused.

The new Captur line up is priced from £15,615 to £23,405 - an increase of between some £700 and £1,300 over the version launched back in 2013 - but now comes with more equipment including full Android Auto smartphone connectivity.

Entry level cars on all but the range topping Signature S Nav Capturs are powered by three cylinder, 898cc petrol engines which are more than adequate for everyday use.

Developing 90ps they give the Captur a 0 to 60 time of 13.2 seconds, a top speed of 106mph and are rated at 55.4mpg with emissions of 114g/km.

We have just tried it out in mid-range Dynamique S Nav trim priced from £18,455 and the new Captur is a capable all-rounder.

More powerful engines - and there are 120ps petrols and two diesels available - may be better suited for longer hauls but for general motoring the TCe 90 is fine.

We saw an average close to 40 to the gallon on a good country drive and eco driving is helped by a coloured band in the instrument panel which changes from green to amber to red depending on driving style.

Keep it in the green through the five speed box and the Captur is nicely economical, helped in traffic by a stop/start system.

Sat nav is standard on this model and for a compact crossover the Captur is roomy and comfortable with plenty of practical features including a good-sized glovebox, door pockets all round and elasticated straps on the back of the front seats. There's even a pop-up cubby on the top of the dash above the central display screen.

Boot space ranges from 455 to 1,235 litres which is of good proportion and there's an underfloor compartment for added storage.

The Captur also retains perhaps its most user-friendly feature and that's its zip-off upholstery which allows the seat coverings to be put in a washing machine should they become soiled.

For a small family the Captur is a car that is right on trend but it's for those who need a bigger vehicle that Renault has introduced the Koleos.

Just shy of 15ft 4ins long, the Koleos is some two inches bigger than a Discovery Sport and that is reflected in a huge amount of room inside and a massive boot that can stretch up to 1,690 litres.

It's priced from £27,500 and for a vehicle of such proportions that is very competitive.

The Koleos, which is built in South Korea at a factory Renault shares with Samsung, is diesel only and available either with a 130ps 1.6-litre engine or a 175ps 2.0-litre.

The bigger engine offers four-wheel-drive and can be had either with a six speed manual gearbox or a Renault's seven speed X-Tronic auto box.

With either powertrain the Koleos has good off-road credentials - albeit more soft-roader than real mud-plugger - and the manual model has a two-tonne towing limit. The automatic is limited to 1.65 tonnes.

In range topping Signature Nav specification the Koleos auto costs from £34,200 and out on the road it is smooth and refined.

Acceleration 0 to 60 is 9.5 seconds and although there are no paddle shifters, steptronic changes are available and the transmission responds rapidly.

Top speed is a claimed 125mph and officially the auto is rated at 47.9mpg with a CO2 figure of 156g/km. We saw 39 to the gallon over a mixed run which took in all types of roads including motorways.

Where the Koleos scores is with comfort and the seat structure is incredibly supportive - a look at the head restraints is a clue to the luxury Renault has fitted inside.

Leg room in the rear is of near limousine proportions and noise levels inside are well suppressed at all speeds.

The car we tried included features such as heated and ventilated front seats, an 8.7-inch vertical touchscreen, a powered tailgate, LED headlights, automatic parking and a full set of driver safety systems such as lane departure warning and traffic sign recognition.

It's a fine blend of form and function and light years ahead of the previous Koleos which Renault last sold in the UK five years ago.

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