The brand new, and notably larger, 2017 Renault Koleos made its world premiere today in China, ahead of its highly anticipated Australian launch around September this year.
Billed as Renault’s “first D-segment SUV”, the new Koleos is significantly larger than the eight-year old outgoing model, which remains a core car for Renault Australia. The design is far more upmarket, with top-end models getting LED headlights and 19-inch wheels.
At 4670mm in length on a 2710mm wheelbase, it’s closer to large SUVs such as the 4700mm Hyundai Santa Fe than its 150mm-shorter compact predecessor. The Koleos is based on the same flexible CMF C/D platform as the Nissan X-Trail and Renault Espace.
While not explicitly mentioned in any media materials, we understand from past conversations with Renault management that the Koleos will be available with seven-seats, making it more family friendly.
Renault also promises a large 289mm of knee-room for second-row passengers, and more elbow room than most. It also promises wider door apertures than numerous rivals, making ingress/egress easier.
The 624-litre boot (with two-tiered loading floor) expands significantly when you fold the middle seats via handles in the boot area. Scattered about the cabin are a further 35L worth of cargo cubbies, such as an 11L glovebox.
Renault believes the cabin “outclasses its rivals” with high-end features such as heated rear seats, LED ambient cabin lights, high-end materials, a BOSE audio system and standard large tablet displays , as seen on other new Renaults such as the 2016 Megane.
High-end active safety features available will include autonomous brakes, lane assist, automatic headlights, blind-spot monitoring and tiredness detection.
Under the bonnet will be a choice (depending on world region) of two petrol and two diesel engines, with power outputs ranging between 96kW and 127kW (torque not listed yet) and matched to either six-speed manual or Nissan X-Tronic CVT auto gearboxes.
Entry versions of the Koleos will be front-wheel drive, but a 4×4 version will also be available. It’s an on-demand system operated via a switch on the dash. The 4WD system, when engaged, automatically splits torque front to rear. A 4WD Lock mode selects permanent all-wheel drive
Renault cites a good 213mm of ground clearance, and approach and departure angles of 19- and 26-degrees respectively.
The new Koleos will be available in more than 80 countries across all the continents (bar Antarctica, obviously). It joins Renault’s expanded top-tier family, comprising the Talisman and Espace, but it’s the only one of this trio made for right-hand drive markets like ours.
As before, the new Renault Koleos will be made in Busan, Korea. This means Renault Australia will be able to keep the price down — a factor that has stopped it importing European-made SUVs such as the Kadjar.
“The new Koleos will play a critical role in the continued expansion of Renault’s business in Australia,” said Renault Australia managing director Justin Hocevar.
“This vehicle is a core model and the new Koleos will give us and our network business partners a very appealing and well-equipped product with which to compete in this very important segment.
“It delivers exceptional performance, comfort and safety for our customers. We are delighted and excited to see its entrance in our part of the world and look forward to it arriving in Australia.”