Editor: Jason “The Bok” Date – 07 Dec 2016

When Renault South Africa introduced the Kadjar on our local shores early this year it received a lot of attention. Over the past couple of months, the Kadjar has proven itself to offer a very desirable blend of luxury, sophistication, comfort and gorgeous French looks.

kadjar-tb1For some odd reason, it was never available with an automated gearbox, that is until now!

The Drive

Renault South Africa now offer the Kadjar range with their EDC (dual clutch) transmission automated gearbox. The automatic Kadjar is offered with two different engine variants, namely the 1.2 TCe and 1.5 dCI versions.

I spent my week driving the 1.5dCI with EDC gearbox to find out what it’s like. The 1.5 dCI engine is the same motor which I recently spent some time discovering in the Renault Captur Sunset Edition(see review below).

This turbocharged diesel powerplant produces 66 kW of power and 220 Nm of torque. With the 1.5dCI, the power delivery is smooth and consistent, but what makes this engine most impressive comes in the way of its consumption. In both the Captur and the Kadjar despite driving both vehicles the daily dense urban , I was unable to even cause a dent in the fuel level. Renault really has produced a very impressive engine here.

The Style 

Straight off the bat, you will note that Kadjar is an incredibly pretty automobile. Despite its large dimensions, the body is constructed of graceful lines and bold curves which make it incredibly attractive all-around. The Kadjar also features very bold LED lighting at the front and rear

kadjar-tb2The Comfort

The journey of French attraction continues onto the interior space, which in this Dynamic trim is comprised of high-quality soft touch materials and swooping large comfortable leather seats. The Kadjar is as much about smart applications as it is about pure style.

kadjar-tb3Space is very generous whether seated up-front, at the rear (rear passenger compartment also includes 12v power socket and ISOFIX mounting points) and the Kadjar offers a spacious boot too, made even more accessible with seats with fold in the standard split configuration.

kadjar-tb5The Clever 

You immediately will notice its clever instrumentation cluster which is not only digital, it has a wealth of customisation options and even allows the driver to toggle through a wide range of feedback styles and colour schemes.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-10-03-pm

The digital instrumentation cluster intuitive feel blends in very well with the Renault R-Link 7inch multimedia system interface. This system is smooth, intuitive and feels much like using a tablet-based PC. R-Link is easy to use and completely style customisable, allowing media to be delivered through a wide variety of sources including; USB, and Bluetooth Streaming and several other sources.

The Conclusion

Based on the Nissan Qashqai, the Renault Kadjar is a bit pricier, but does offer an incredibly pretty appearance and an added sense of extra charm, which makes it, in my opinion, a seriously good all-rounder. The Kadjar is well-specced, offers a great multimedia interface and very impressive levels of comfort.

Its closest competitors come in the way of:

– The Mazda CX-5

– Honda CR-V &

– Volkswagen Tiguan

The Renault Kadjar has been nominated as a 2017 SA Car of The Year finalist and its certainly got my vote.

SA Pricing:

R414,900 (Incl: 5-year/150 000 km warranty and a 5-year/90 000 km service plan)

Additional options fitted to review vehicle -R10 000 more than the manual Dynamique model:

Metallic Paint (R2500)

Leather/electric/heated front seats for (R12,000)

Watch my full video review – Driving the all-new 2016 Renault Kadjar 1.5 dCI EDC edition:

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