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Renault’s new diesel Koleos SUV

Small and medium SUV’s and 4 x 4 light commercials were once again the high flyers in vehicle sales last month. In September Renault added a 4WD diesel variant to its five-seat
Koleos SUV which arrived in here in August last year in two petrol 2WD and 4WD variants.
The diesel comes in one grade mimicking the high-grade petrol Intense model – with 2.0- litre turbo-diesel and a continuously variable automatic selling for $46,990. The CVT comes with a welcome manual mode and the first thing you notice is how well the transmission handles the 380Nm of torque – there’s good CVT’s and average ones but this one does not reflect the excess slip that characterizes many of them. The Koleos is now Renault’s big seller representing 30 percent of sales – nice looking in a slightly larger body to many medium SUV and with very attractive daytime running lights. It’s a little harsher in the ride in heavier 4 x 4 form but more than acceptable. What is appealing is the interior and frankly the high grade Intense is the nicest of the Koleos range with the large vertically skewed central colour monitor easy to read and well placed. High points superb seats and dash layout and very clear easy to read instrumentation. The diesel Koleos is more for those buyers looking to do some off-road meandering – it doesn’t have low range but doesn’t need it for light off-roading. As I said apart from a slightly firmer ride to the 2WD variants I found little to fault with this French-built SUV. I’m David Berthon

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