The launch of the second-generation Renault Koleos in Oman is one of the company’s most significant to date. So significant that we are in fact one among the first market to get the car — not something we’re used to here. The medium-SUV is poised to become the company’s top-seller here, which is fitting when you consider the continued rapid growth in this corner of the market.
The new Koleos sits on the same proven architecture as the Nissan X-Trail (fruits of the global Renault-Nissan Alliance) and Renault is keeping up with its offensive in the SUV segment. This brand-new addition to the product line-up will provide Oman customers with a wider and complete choice to fulfil even more their local expectations.
Here we take our first drive of a Koleos hosted by the company at Downtown Dubai where it was officially launched. New Koleos was first unveiled at the last Beijing Motor Show and embodies Renault’s high-end vision for the markets where SUV sales are booming.
I must say, Koleos delivers all that is expected of a D-segment SUV: Powerful, muscular exterior lines, four-wheel drive technology, all-terrain ability, thanks to a ground clearance of 210mm, 15cm longer than the previous model, and 550dm3 VDA boot (equivalent to 600 litres).
Besides, this new add-on to the catalogue highlights Renault’s know-how: A refined, comfortable interior with seats including technology and design amongst the very best in its category, class-leading cabin space, including 289mm of rear knee room, 8.7” touchscreen tablet with R-LINK 2 multimedia and navigation system. New Koleos delivers a blend of robust SUV codes as well as the refinement and features associated with large sedan cars.
Refined on-board experience
As soon as you settle on board, you already feel as if you are somewhere else. Nothing here is left to chance. Everything is a step above: The materials, the satin finish on the chrome inserts, and the finely stitched leather. In simple words, Koleos looks protective from inside with its comfort, quality and elegant interior which is in perfect harmony with the model’s exterior lines. An elevated driving position offers excellent visibility. Compared to a traditional sedan, the new Koleos’ driving position is 150mm higher, a reassuring feature that is highly prized by SUV buyers. The tall, wide dashboard is intended to give driver and passenger a sense of safety and protection. Hand grips either side of the centre console echo the world of off-road motoring while imbuing the interior with a sporty feel.
Koleos comes with a 2.5-litre, four-cylinder engine and has 16-valve powerplant with double overhead camshafts. Power is 170hp (126kW) at 6,000rpm, with peak torque of 233Nm at 4,000rpm. Renault says the two-wheel-drive Koleos needs 9.5 seconds to reach 100km/h, while the heavier all-wheel-drive version needs an extra 0.3s to make the same mark. The all-wheel-drive variant drives the front wheels for the most part, sending up to 50 per cent of drive to the rear when required. A locked four-wheel-drive setting allows for an even split of torque at low speeds on loose surfaces.
We tested the Koleos on winding roads surrounding Dubai, where the SUV acquitted itself well with nicely weighted, consistent steering and decent balance. On these roads, Renault’s machine felt much more impressive. With its global appeal, Koleos will certainly play a huge part in the Renault’s brand’s international growth by expanding its product range and extending its foothold across the world. For Renault, Koleos comes at a time when SUVs are enjoying strong growth in many markets, and for many consumers, this will be their first opportunity to experience the Renault brand.
Number of cylinders/valves: 4/16
Horse power: 170
Peak power rating (rpm): 6,000
Peak torque Nm - 233
Peak torque rating (rpm) - 4,000
Suhail Bahwan Automotive
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