Renault Kadjar has a nose for what Irish consumers want

I knew that Renault had given their Kadjar a revamp and was told that the car was given a new nose. 

Now with us humans getting a new nose would be a huge change. Some people are really conscious of their noses and those who can afford it, often get some work done on their hooters. Some celebrities, who are worried about the size or shape of their nose, have been known to insist on being photographed from their ‘best side.’

So when I picked up the Kadjar last week naturally the first thing I checked out was the front of the car. And yes it’s an improvement – the front of the revamped Kadjar is now inspired by other SUVs from the Renault stable like the Captur and Koleos. New C-Shaped lights add to the impressive exterior look and there are new bumpers also.

Inside it’s still very spacious and impressive. One of the items in the interior that stays with me are the three strong grips in the cabin, two in the passenger’s side and one on the driver’s door. I presume they could be useful if you were doing some serious off-road driving. 

When the original Kadjar was launched over three years ago, Renault MD Paddy Magee said that the Kadjar, which has a ‘silent d,’ was a new option for their customers, who may in the past may have driven a Scenic or Grand Scenic. Now the Kadjar is seen as a big brother of the Renault Captur.

There are new, more efficient petrol and diesel engines available while standard equipment now includes climate control, seven-inch touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, alloy wheels, parking sensors, and automatic lights and wipers. Two silver roof rails add to the SUV look. 

This is a five-seater, but externally you might think it could take seven seats. Naturally that extra space is given over to the boot area. The boot is huge and the good news is that you get a full-size spare wheel. So well done Mr Renault; you know what Irish customers want.

Fuel consumption in the 1.5 litre diesel version I drove was excellent; the fuel gauge hardly moved in the first few days that I drove the car. It was definitely the most frugal car I have driven in recent years. Then confirmation when I read that the 1.5 diesel is officially the most efficient of all Renault engines available. Also available in 1.3-litre petrol. 

My test car came in Iron Blue colour and looked very distinctive. That colour sounds like a Scottish soccer cup competition which Bohemians almost played in a few weeks back.

When the first edition of the Kadjar was launched in 2015 it had 25 SUVs to compete with; now the opposition numbers 40. In Ireland there is serious competition in this sector with the Nissan Qashqai, Hyundai Tucson, Kia Sportage, Peugeot 3008 and a few more all providing tough opposition. 

Prices start at €26,995. My top of the range GT version which came with a plethora of extras, will cost you €36,570.

The Kadjar is built in Palencia, Northern Spain. It’s a big chunky motor, but very comfortable to travel in. I liked it, a lot.

Sean Creedon

Sean Creedon is a national motoring journalist.

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