Even though I reviewed my first Renault Koleos more than a decade ago, this medium-sized soft-roader still flies under the radar a bit. Allow me to uncover its merits for you…
You should know: Buying Renault’s current range topper has its advantages, other than instant respect from your nearest dealership. The Koleos is well proportioned, beautifully styled and comes with all the goodies you would expect a school-run pavement hopper to possess.
More info: Our local retailers offer three models. Expression CVT 4×2, Dynamique CVT 4×2 and this Dynamique CVT 4×4. Or, as the shiny badge on its boot-lid correctly displays, 4WD. That means you can only get the Koleos with that dreaded rubber-band CVT, plus they all use the same 2.5L in-line 4-cylinder petrol engine.
What else? That humble power plant provides up to 126kW or 233Nm, which relegates the Koleos to back of class in terms of performance but arguably shoves it forward again when you consider longevity. Typing of which, some CVT’s have a tendency to go wonky… while others shine with excellent fuel efficiency if treated correctly.
Its maker claims an average of 8.3L/100km from the 60L tank, and although we saw at least two litres more during mixed driving, our 0-100km/h performance tests back in 2019 beat the maker’s claim by quite a margin: 9.43 vs. the claimed 10.7 seconds. Other crossover numbers include 160mm of ground clearance and 464 to 1,795L of boot space.
Thanks to its comfy French roots, the generous 225/60R18 tyres provide excellent ride quality. They also pair up with an on-demand all-wheel drive system to provide Koleos 4WD pilots with a bit of off-road freedom. We also found multiple drive modes, a full size spare wheel, voice command and every imaginable media or smartphone connectivity.
Why you shouldn’t: If you’re worried about resale values, high altitude performance, dealer network and parts availability, the Koleos may not be the car for you. The “New X-Tronic” gearbox could also be a deal-breaker for most punters but I hasten to add that a thorough test-drive will sort out any concerns you may have.
Why you should: With decent space, gadgets, comfort and safety features, this stylish Renault with its sophisticated cabin could be the individualist choice you’re looking for in a sea of aggro Germans and plastic Japs. Renault includes a 5-year/150,000km warranty and 5-year/90,000km service plan which each successful new sale.
FULL SPEC LIST
|Engine:||2,488cc in-line 4-cylinder petrol|
|Max. Power:||126kW @ 6,000rpm|
|Max. Torque:||233Nm @ 4,000rpm|
|Avg. cons.:||Claimed 8.3L/100km|
|0-100km/h:||Claimed 10.7 seconds|
|Top Speed:||Claimed 192km/h|