Renault Koleos revealed will soon launch in India

After the Fluence saloon, Renault is readying their next launch for the Indian market; an SUV, the Koleos. What will eventually come to India however will be a face-lifted version; of which we have recently acquired a sketch of. 

As evident, the front end has been completely redesigned. Straightaway, the Koleos feels much more modern and upto date.  The split grille has been replaced by a simpler and more modern looking single piece unit, the new projector type headlights are smaller and move higher up the bonnet and the modern chin has squared-off fog light enclosures.   The overall slightly tipped forward stance of the car remains and the neatly executed waistline and roofline complement the face lift really well too. 

From some angles, the Koleos looks Korean, and that’s not surprising because it is manufactured in Korea and sold there as the Samsung QM5. In fact, the Koleos is the result of inputs from each of the brands in the Renault-Nissan-Samsung collaboration. While Renault was responsible for styling, Nissan did the engineering using the X-Trail’s platform as the base.

We drove the Koleos in Europe last year and found it a capable and luxurious crossover. The Koleos is powered by a 2-litre 150bhp all-aluminum common-rail diesel engine with variable valve timing. This is the same M9R unit that powers the X-Trail, coupled with a six-speed manual transmission. This diesel motor, like in the X-trail, is quite rev-happy with lots of punch once you cross 2000rpm. 

The interior fit and finish won’t give VW engineers sleepless nights, but there’s a solidity to the interiors that is a cut above its Korean peers. The plastics are hardwearing, the switchgear feels solid and the vents don’t flap around. The trim feels tightly screwed down and hence rattles are unlikely to creep in, which bodes well for extended use. 

The rear seats are incredibly comfortable thanks to a high hip or ‘H’ point which offers good under-thigh support, despite the high floor. There is no third row of seats and this could be a big disadvantage, especially since the Captiva and the soon-to-be-launched updated Outlander have seven-seat configurations, which is a big hook for Indian families. But none of the other SUVs have the Koleos’ clever detailing which will not fail to impress you. There are fold-down trays  on the back of the front seats for the rear passengers to use, and the cubbyholes in the floor and the split tailgate, which double-up as a table or bench (the lower section when folded down can take the weight of two people), are brilliant touches. 

The handling is docile, this car is clearly set up for relaxed driving, and there’s lots of body roll. The Koleos’ ride quality is phenomenal and it feels utterly smooth and composed even over bad roads which in turn will be great for Indian conditions.  
If Renault prices this car competitively, somewhere between 16 and 18 lakh, it could be quite an attractive alternative to the more popular SUVs at that price range. 


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that's it for now.............Drive safe make sure you wear your seat belts and please do not use high beams........


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