Renault Koleos review 2020

The Koleos proves a handsome SUV and great family five-seater.

£20,325
Average price
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3
Out of 5

Pros

  • Drives well
  • Handsome styling
  • Good levels of interior space

Cons

  • No option of seven seats
  • Only two diesel engines available – there’s no petrol or hybrid option
  • Questionable reliability
  • MPG

    0 - 0

  • CO2

    0 - 0 g/km

  • Video

  • Price Guide

  • Trims

  • Summary

Model review

The Renault Koleos nameplate started back in 2006 – with the first-generation model – as a crossover. That model, while designed by Renault, was actually developed by Nissan, with the majority of the production coming from the Busan, South Korea, plant of Renault Samsung Motors.

While the original Koleos was facelifted in July 2011 and shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show during the same year, the car was withdrawn from the UK in 2010 – so prior to the update – due to poor sales. Production in Europe overall, however, ended in March 2015.

In 2016, however, Renault brought the nameplate back, this time in full-fledged SUV form – no longer could it be called a small SUV or crossover.

Current model

As mentioned before, the second-generation, current iteration of the Koleos began production in 2016 and is larger than its predecessor – although it’s still a five-seater as opposed to being available with seven seats.

In 2019, the model received a facelift, featuring tweaked exterior styling, a revamped interior 

Out on the road, the Koleos performs as you’d expect an SUV to, which is to say it’s better at soaking up bumps and cruising than entertaining on a tight, twisty road. That being said, the steering is well weighted, and the car feels stable and secure, which inspires confidence from behind the wheel.

With this in mind, most SUV buyers will be happy with how the Koleos drives as it offers a relaxed and refined driving experience complemented by confidence-inspiring handling.

Value for money

New Koleos models start from £28,495, which is roughly in-line with rivals such as the Skoda Kodiaq and Seat Tarraco – so a rather reasonable price tag new then.

Looking on the used market, on the other hand, and first-generation examples can be had for as little as circa £1,500. Want a current generation example, however, and expect to pay upwards of around £14,500 – still not bad by any means.

Looks and image

Being currently the largest SUV in Renault’s range, the Koleos needs to look stylish, muscular and it certainly needs to have presence. Fortunately, the model has all of those things – to a degree. Sure, it’s not the best-looking SUV ever made, let alone on sale today, but it’s definitely a handsome machine in our opinion. It’s undoubtedly one of the French manufacturer’s most desirable and attractive products. 

Video review

Space and practicality

The Koleos, while not the largest, is a big SUV, meaning there’s no shortage of space when it comes to the car’s interior. Headroom and legroom are generous throughout the cabin, even in the rear-most row. It’s just a shame it can’t be had with seven-seats like some of its rivals.

When it comes to boot space, there’s plenty on offer – 565 litres to be exact. With the rear seats folded flat, however, that figure increases to an impressive 1,795 litres. That should be more than enough for anyone looking to use their Koleos as a load lugger.

  

Engines

Under the bonnet, the Koleos can be had with two diesel engines – a 148bhp 1.8-litre and a 187bhp 2.0-litre. While both engines offer a good amount of punch and are economical units, we would’ve liked – or perhaps in the future – to have the option of a petrol, or better yet, a hybrid/plug-in hybrid unit as well. This would just help diversify the model’s capability and keep it competitive with rivals.

Running costs

As previously stated, the diesel units, whichever you go for, will offer relatively cheap running costs for an SUV of this size. The 1.8-litre, although, will prove the most economical motor, as it claims to achieve circa 46.3mpg and emit 143g/km of CO2.

The 2.0-litre powerplant isn’t that much worse even though it’s paired with four-wheel-drive (as opposed to the 1.8-litre’s two-wheel-drive. It’s said to return around 40.9mpg and emit circa 150g/km of CO2.

While these are not class leading, they’re not bad for a car of this class, especially for the reasonable price tag new and used.

Things to look out for

While long-term reliability is yet to be determined, the Koleos should serve buyers well, although concerns have been raised. You see, the Nissan X-Trail on which it’s based has proved to have some issues, most notably with its engine, but hopefully Renault’s working to iron out any problems owners have experienced with that car.

It’s also worth noting that the Koleos comes with plenty of impressive safety kit, such as autonomous emergency braking (which comes as standard), as well as lane-departure warning, traffic-sign recognition and blind-spot warning.

  

Rivals

The SUV segment is a popular one nowadays, meaning the Koleos has quite a few cars to contend with, like the Seat Tarraco, Skoda Kodiaq and Nissan X-Trail. While the Renault misses out on a few things that some of its rivals possess, such as the option of seven seats, it makes a pretty great case for itself and is a properly attractive offering within the SUV market.

  

Depreciation

The cheapest used Koleos models of the current generation can be bought for roughly £10,000 off their original list price. Considering it’s now three years old, the model hasn’t suffered huge depreciation, but it’s not held its value particularly well either. Despite it being in a desirable segment and offering plenty of space, the Koleos can’t quite offer that premium image that buyers can get with other large SUVs from the likes of Volkswagen and Land Rover.

Trims explained

There are currently two trim levels offered with the Koleos – Iconic and GT Line.

'Iconic'

This is the base trim level and can be had with kit such as ABS, cruise control with speed limiter, sliding central console, electric rear windows, lane departure warning, hands free parking and a leather steering wheel.

Priced from £28,495

'GT Line'

Step up to this trim level, and the Koleos can be had with equipment like blind spot warning, heated front seats, climate control – dual zone, LED daytime running lights and two step rear reclining seats.

Available from £30,495

Summary

  1. The Koleos was first a crossover back in 2006 and until 2010 (in the UK)
  2. The second, current generation iteration of the model began production in 2016
  3. It received a facelift in 2019, ushering in slightly altered exterior styling and a revamped interior, among other changes
  4. New Koleos models start from £28,495
  5. Used examples of the latest Koleos go for as little as circa £14,500
  6. We believe it’s a handsome addition to the SUV class
  7. It offers plenty of interior space and practicality, but there’s no option of seven seats like with some rivals
  8. The model comes with the choice of two diesel engines – no petrol or hybrid powertrains on offer, at the time of writing
  9. Both diesel units offer a good amount of punch and decent fuel economy
  10. The SUV offers a good blend of comfort and driving entertainment for the class

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