If youíre in the market for a mid-sized SUV then you really need to know about the Renault Koleos.
The Koleos sits above the Captur and the Kadjar in Renaultís SUV range. While underneath itís basically a Nissan X-Trail, the Koleos is only offered with five seats. It prioritises comfort and luxury over outright carrying capacity.
Step inside and youíll find that the interior of the Renault Koleos is far nicer than it is in the Nissan X-Trail. In fact, youíd be hard pushed to tell that the two cars are actually related. The quality is genuinely quite good. Thereís lots of soft touch plastics everywhere and it all feels really well screwed together. Thereís a portrait tablet screen which sits in the middle of the dashboard which works quite well. Thereís some handy shortcut buttons around the edge and some physical dials at the bottom for the temperature controls. Overall, the functionality is fine but one thing you need to be aware of is that you do have to go for the Signature Nav trim which will cost you £2k more than the entry level car. The reason why you should go for the Signature Nav is because the standard screen is of a landscape format and doesnít look that good at all. Practicality-wise your find plenty of useful cubby holes dotted around the cabin along with some handy charging points. The glove compartment is certainly large enough for a large packet of crisps and the door bins just about pass the big bottle test.
Due to the fact that the Koleos is a five-seater it means that thereís tons of room at the back. Youíll be immediately impressed with the sheer amount of leg room you have. Having said this, the seat bases are positioned very high up which means that although passengers get a great view out thereís not a huge amount of headroom. You can just about fit three people along the back seats. Thereís a small hump in the floor which is great but the person sitting in the middle is going to want to only sit there for short journeys. This is because not only is the seat base quite hard but theyíre really going to struggle for headroom.
Things arenít too rosy around at the boot because at 565 litres the Koleosí boot is quite off its rivals such as the Skoda Kodiaq. However, itís got a nice square shape with some underfloor storage, some cubbies either side and a 12v socket. Itís a shame that thereís quite a large lip which may make it a little difficult to load your luggage in. You can fold down the 60/40 rear seats which gives you an almost flat loading area and increases boot volume quite considerably.
The Koleos is Renaultís flagship car in the UK so thereís just two high-spec trims. One being the Dynamique S Nav which includes all-round parking sensors, part leather seats, a panoramic sunroof, 18inch two-tone alloy wheels, a reversing camera, digital dashboard dials and an impressive list of safety kit. The Signature Nav gives you LED headlights, full leather front seats and a powered tailgate.
Choosing an engine is simple too as there are only two available. Both are diesel and while the 1.6 litre DCi 130 is around £3k cheaper, the 2 litre DCi 175 gives you 4-wheel drive. The 2 litre diesel gets you from 0 to 62 miles per hour in around 10.5 seconds. This is slashed to 9.5 seconds if you go for the automatic gearbox. If you go for the 1.6 litre engine then itís around 11.4 seconds. We think buyers should go for the 1.6, this is unless you really want 4-wheel drive. Not only is the 1.6 unit a little bit quieter than the 2 litre but because itís a bit more revvy it just feels that little bit more urgent. The economy is reasonable if unexceptional. The 1.6 litre diesel officially returns 57.6 miles per gallon (mpg) while the bigger engine gives you 50.4 mpg. This drops to 47.9 mpg if you opt for the CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) automatic transmission. Co2 emissions range from 128 to 156 grams per kilometre (gkm).
Apart from the 2.0 litre diesel engine, which does make quite a lot of noise and transmits quite a lot of vibrations through the pedals, the Koleos is quite a refined and comfortable car to travel around in. The steering is very light and does feel a little over-assisted. Itís not quite as good as the Skoda Kodiaq or the Ford Kuga. However, you could say this for quite a few of this carís rivals. Visibility is very good, the seats are comfortable, the ride is easy going and genuinely speaking this car ticks all the SUV boxes. Unfortunately, it just doesnít do anything noteworthy to excite you.