In Depth

Renault Kadjar SUV: Prices, specs and reviews

Everything you need to know about Renault's Qashqai alternative

The Nissan Qashqai is Britain's favourite crossover and the bestselling car by some margin in the ultra-competitive small-SUV market sector. There's plenty of rival products on the market, but none of them come quite as close as the Renault Kadjar. 

The Kadjar shares its platform and engine range with the Qashqai, but offers more space while undercutting its Nissan sibling on price. It's a newer car, too, and boasts a rounded design in contrast to the angular cuts of the Nissan. 

Is it a better buy, though? Here are all the details on the Kadjar and what the reviewers think of it.

Design

The Kadjar is a slightly larger car than the Qashqai it shares many of its parts with. Many critics reckon it's also a more interesting car.

Auto Express says that it's a handsome crossover and has more character than its more "generic" Nissan sibling. With its swept back headlights and nose emblazoned with a large Renault logo, the Kadjar makes a striking SUV. It's also a much more modern looking car than its main rival.

The car's shape is curvaceous, and the bodywork flicks and creases towards the back which makes this tall crossover appear a little more purposeful and sporty.

Interior and practicality

CarWow says "sit inside the Kadjar and you're greeted by a very upmarket cockpit". Most of the cabin plastics are high quality and soft to the touch, while there are glossy, piano black plastics and aluminium trim inserts around the cabin too.

Build quality is excellent, but the car's interior isn't as solid as the Volkswagen Tiguan. In CarWow's view, though, it's a more interesting place to sit than the Qashqai.

The site says that the Kadjar's infotainment setup is better than the one you'll find in its Nissan-badged rival. The 7ins touchscreen is standard equipment on all but entry-level versions of the Kadjar and is simple to use, with very few buttons. Step up to a Nav trim level car and the new crossover comes with satellite navigation thrown in as standard.

Because the Kadjar is a slightly larger car than the Qashqai, it's particularly roomy for passengers. It's got a larger boot, too – 472-litres of boot space is found in the back with every seat in place, while folding the rear row flat opens up a 1,478-litre loading bay.

Engines and drivetrains

The Kadjar is available with three engines – unsurprisingly, all of them lifted from the Nissan Qashqai.

There are two diesel options. The smaller 1.5-litre engine is the most popular, as it's the cheapest one to run. Renault claims you'll get 74.3mpg from this car, and the 99g/km CO2 figure means you'll pay no road tax whatsoever.

The larger diesel is also fairly frugal, producing a claimed 65.7mpg. The 1.2-litre petrol is the least efficient, delivering 50.4mpg and 126g/km CO2. It's the cheapest one to buy, though.

Towards the top end of the range, you can spec the Kadjar with an all-wheel-drive system.

Reviews

Auto Express scores the Kadjar four stars out of five and says its "winning blend of desirability, quality, practicality and low running costs" make it an excellent choice for families. It is better than the Qashqai "in almost every area", adds the mag, but it still falls short of other rivals, such as the new Seat Ateca. 

Auto Express recommends going for the lower-powered 1.5-litre diesel, saying it's the cheapest one to run and doesn't feel too sluggish compared to the more powerful diesel. Dynamique Nav trim level is also a favourite, it adds, as it's loaded with standard kit, including satellite navigation.

CarBuyer likes the Kadjar too and highlights the car's five-star Euro NCAP safety rating and excellent list of standard equipment in Dynamique Nav trim. "The Kadjar should be on your shortlist" if you're after a spacious and well-priced family car, it says. 

While What Car? says the car doesn't ride quite as comfortably as its Nissan stablemate and nor is it as fun to drive, the mag still says it's an "outstanding option if you're after a spacious family SUV", with the extra space and lower price tag making the difference. 

Prices and specs

Prices for the Kadjar kick off at £18.495, making it £100 cheaper than the Qashqai. For that, you'll get the 1.2-litre petrol in basic Expression+ trim level.

The 1.5-litre diesel is also available in entry-level trim at a cost of £20,395. For the more powerful 1.6-litre diesel you'll have to buy the Kadjar in Dynamique Nav trim (priced at £23,295) but you do get the infotainment screen with satellite navigation as standard.

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