The Renault Kadjar is a spacious family SUV that’s perfect for the family – it just isn’t that exciting inside and is pretty dull to drive
The Renault Kadjar is a large family car that looks smart, is cheap to run and comes with a fairly big boot. It sits above the Renault Captur but below the Renault Koleos in terms of size in Renault’s SUV range.
The Renault Kadjar’s interior doesn’t look quite as inspiring as the outside, though. Entry-level models do without any form of touchscreen infotainment system and you don’t get smartphone mirroring or a massive portrait style infotainment screen like you can have in the cheaper Renault Megane. Despite this, the cabin feels solidly built, plus the mostly soft and squidgy materials on the dashboard feel pretty posh.
Even entry-level models get a height adjustable driver’s seat that makes it easy to get comfy behind the wheel and there’s an impressive amount of space in the back, too. Two six-foot adults can get reasonably comfy in the rear and three kids will have plenty of room to spread out.
In terms of practicality, the Renault Kadjar’s 472-litre boot is pretty roomy. It’ll easily swallow a baby stroller and a few large soft bags but the VW Tiguan, Kia Sportage and SEAT Ateca can all carry slightly more. The rear seats fold in a handy two-way (60:40) split as standard, so you can carry a passenger in the back and loads of luggage simultaneously.
You could be forgiven for thinking the Kadjar looks a bit like a Qashqai – they’re essentially the same car, although the Nissan is more comfortable,the Renault’s a bit roomier
Driving the Renault Kadjar is an experience that errs on the side of efficiency rather than fun. You get two petrol and two diesels to choose from, all of which are relatively frugal, but not particularly fast.
If you drive mostly in town, pick the 1.2-litre petrol – it’s quieter than the diesels and will return around 40mpg in the real world. If your Kadjar will spend most of its time eating up motorway miles, get the 1.5-litre diesel that’ll sip fuel at a modest (official) rate of around 65mpg.
A seven-speed automatic gearbox is available with both the 1.2 petrol and 1.5 diesel and is a worthwhile option if you want to make progress as fuss-free as possible.
The Renault Kadjar has a few other stress-busting attributes up its sleeve – the raised driving position gives you a good view over the road ahead and the interior is quiet at a cruise. The rather slim rear windows and thick door pillars can make guiding it through tight city streets a little nerve-wracking, but front and rear parking sensors are standard on Dynamique S Nav models and top-spec Signature S Nav versions can park themselves.
Perhaps more importantly, all models can brake automatically if an imminent collision is detected – no wonder the Kadjar got an impressive five-star safety rating when it was crash tested by Euro NCAP in 2015.
Sounds like the Renault Kadjar’s a good all-rounder, doesn’t it? That safety rating, spacious interior, efficient engines and roomy boot all mean it’s well worth putting on your family SUV shopping list.