Rate The Site


Your Email Address

Please enter your comments & suggestions

Join Us to Know about the Latest Cars and
Great Offers on Cars & Car Accessories

Renault Koleos - Introduction


The ‘new’ Renault Koleos receives a face-lift, two new powertrain options, and a reduced price. Does this make it a compelling proposition? We test drove the new Koleos for a day to bring you this SUV review.


Renault India is emotional about the Koleos. It’s a product that the company believes has the potential to sell in decent numbers, and the premium SUV segment is one which the company feels has yet to achieve the kind of significance it deserves, but that it has potential. So, Renault India has persevered with the Koleos.


Renault Koleos - Design & Engineering


new renault koleos style


The design changes to car are largely to do with the front grille and the Renault logo. A common joke in advertising agencies is about clients demanding to ‘make the logo larger’. In the case of the Koleos, this approach actually works.

The grille receives extensions on either side, with eyelets that meet the headlamps, and the three horizontal chrome bars in the grille are slightly longer as well.

There are no other design changes to the car otherwise. The Koleos’ styling does not excite, and it does not have the panache of the new Honda CR-V or the Santa Fe for example, and neither can it carry off the butch look of the Toyota Fortuner or the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport. The rounded corners give it a slightly frumpy image. Maybe we’re getting used to more angular, aggressive designs, which the Koleos is not. In Renault’s own words, this is an ‘elegant SUV’. Which, to be honest, sounds oxymoronic, no?

One big change is the addition of two new variants; a 4x2 manual and 4x4 automatic join the range, which previously consisted of only the 4x4 automatic. The 2.0 dCi diesel engine has been tweaked to make more power and torque as well. However, the 4x2 MT variant still has 150 PS and 320 Nm, the same as previously, while the two new 4x4 versions get the more powerful 173 PS and 360 Nm version.

The 4x4 variants come with additional equipment like hill start assist as well. Hill descent control is also available on both the manual and automatic 4x4 variants.


Renault Koleos - Interiors & Comfort


new renault koleos dashboard


If the outsides of the Koleos felt a little dated, the interiors convince you that the design thought of this car is about a generation old. The dashboard appears plain jane, and the dot matrix display atop the dashboard does appear old school to the retina display smartphone generation. The round vents with their silver accents and teardrop extensions to the edges of the dashboard do not look nice to me. Of course, design is always subjective, and so one person’s taste needn’t be a make or break deal for a potential customer.


new koleos interior details

Rear seat splits and folds flat too, providing great versatility; rear AC vents are on the B-pillar; 'secret' stowage area in the rear footwell on either side; placement of switches is a little awkward


The control panels for the climate control and stereo are on the centre console, as you would expect t find them, with the buttons for the hill descent control and 4-wheel drive selector below. The start/stop button is tucked away on the bottom of the centre console as well. Ergonomically, this is not the ideal solution.

The 4x4 Koleos gets a Bose stereo, which has 4 speakers, 2 tweeters and something called a ‘twiddler’, matched to a subwoofer in the boot and a dedicated amplifier. The system supports most musical formats and has connection ports for USB and iPod as well. The 4x2 Koleos has a simpler Arkamys stereo with 4 speakers and 2 tweeters, but no subwoofer or amplifier.

What Koleos customers will appreciate is the cooled glovebox, a very useful feature in India, particularly in the summer months for obvious reasons.


renault koleos rear seat space

Rear seat in Renault Koleos has good space and comfortable seating for three adults.


The Koleos has 5 seats, and provides comfortable seating for all five passengers. Even the middle passenger in the rear seat can be comfortably accommodated, and this gives the Koleos a slight edge over other vehicles in this segment. The front seats are almost like arm chairs, providing great comfort. Now, even the front passenger seat is power-adjustable.


Renault Koleos - Performance & Handling


renault koleos performance

Koleos has three driving modes - 4x4 Auto, which automatically sends the requisite torque to each wheel, 4x4 lock, which continuously engages all-wheel drive, and 2WD, which disengages the rear axle, driving the Koleos through the front wheels only.


Like we mentioned earlier, the Koleos’ 2.0-litre Renault dCi engine has received a few tweaks. Power has jumped from 150 to 173 PS, while torque has increased from 320 to 360 Nm. We drove the Koleos 4x4 AT version, which has a six-speed automatic gearbox. The somnambulant gearbox is what makes the Koleos feel slow, which it isn’t. Shifts, either up or down, are done in a leisurely fashion. In order to ensure good fuel efficiency, the software has been tuned such that the Koleos resists kicking-down urgently, even when you bury your right foot. It’s best to use the manual over-ride, and shift the gears manually, a bit like a clutch-less manual. The engine itself is a gem – smooth and refined with good punch and linear power delivery. I’d love to get behind the wheel of a manual Koleos 4x4, but until then I’ll have to whet my appetite with the automatic.


renault koleos performance

The Koleos has good throttle response, but is limited by a lazy gearbox.


The Koleos steers surprisingly well, and although it has some body roll, it never feels like a handful. Renault’s engineers have given the Koleos well-judged responses, and while it doesn’t excite, it doesn’t disappoint. The steering weighs up logically as speed increases, and it changes direction from side to side well. We took it off the beaten path, so to speak, and helped churn up the grass in a fallow field, and the Koleos proved game for this exercise.

Don’t forget its car-like underpinnings though, and even with four-wheel drive, do not try any arduous off-roading in it.

What is to Renault’s advantage is the easy-to-use nature and light controls of the Koleos, which will appeal to urbane customers who want the image of an SUV, but are deterred by their reputation of being heavy and cumbersome to drive.


Renault Koleos - Fuel Efficiency


koleos diesel engine mileage

Refined, powerful and frugal too, the Renault 2.0 dCi is a great engine.


Where the Koleos makes a strong case for itself, in this segment particularly, is that it is diesel-powered. The Honda CR-V, which is another 5-seat soft-roader, is petrol powered, although it is similarly-priced. For the three versions of the new Renault Koleos, these are the ARAI-certified figures:

Koleos 4x2 MT – 17.15

Koleos 4x4 MT – 16.26

Koleos 4x4 AT – 14.56

These are figures which will appeal to customers, and the running costs of the Koleos will give it an edge over the competition. Traditionally, we’ve found Renault’s dCi range to be exceedingly fuel efficient.


Renault Koleos - Safety


new koleos boot

Split tailgate aids both utility and versatility, and is a segment-first.


All variants of the Koleos are available with ABS and EBD, along with two airbags as standard equipment. The 4x4 versions however, add side and curtain airbags and ESP too, along with hill-start assist and hill descent control. In fact, thus equipped, the Renault Koleos has received a maximum 5-star safety rating from Euro NCAP. 


Renault Koleos - Verdict


new renault koleos verdict


So, where do we go from here? Renault India is certain it can make the Koleos a success, and on the face of it, there’s no reason why it can’t. This car, or SUV if you like, is comfortable to sit in, easy to drive, has a great stereo and has a top safety rating too. Let’s not forget the good fuel efficiency will make it economical to run as well. 

But the challenge for Renault now is to market it well. There’s no single USP for the Koleos, unlike its stable-mate Duster, which answered a pressing need of the market when it launched.

The Koleos is not a me-too product; if you had to compare it to diesel SUVs, then you would need to look at the Chevrolet Captiva or the Hyundai Santa Fe, both of which are bigger, with 5+2 seats. They’re more expensive as well. One can’t really compare the Koleos to old-school SUVs such as the Toyota Fortuner, Ford Endeavour and Mitsubishi Pajero Sport either, which are more rugged and quite a bit heavier. In that sense, the Renault Koleos is in a class of one, as a monocoque diesel soft-roader in the Indian market.

But is that of relevance to the Indian consumer? Now that is the challenge for Renault India’s marketing team. The Koleos has its strengths, but then we stumble once again at the ‘elegant SUV’ bit. Is this what the Indian SUV buyer wants? 


Renault Koleos - Competition Check

Hyundai Santa Fe, Chevrolet Captiva, Toyota Fortuner, Honda CR-V


Length x Width x Height (mm) 4520x1855x1695
Wheelbase (mm) 2690
Ground clearance (mm) 188
Kerb weight (kg) 1655
Fuel tank capacity (lt) 65
Engine & Transmission
No of cylinder & configuration 4
Valvetrain 16 Valve
Capacity (cc) 1995
Power (PS @ rpm) 150 @ 4000
Torque (Nm @ rpm) 360 @ 2000
Gearbox 6Speed Manual
Suspension & Brakes
Front suspension McPherson Type
Rear suspension Multilink
Front brakes Ventilated Disc
Rear brakes Disc
Wheels & Tyres
Tyre size and type 225/60 R17
Wheel size and type 17" Alloy

Renault Car Reviews by Experts

renault fluence- Car Review by Experts

Hindustani is a dialect widely spoken throughout India. It is a pot-pourri of mainly Hindi and Urdu, peppered with Arabic, Sanskrit and Persian words and phrases, and lately English as well. Widely spoken in the Indian subcontinent, it is the default lingua franca in most parts of our country. Into this eclectic mix, Renault has thrown in some French flavour

Read Full Review

By Harmaan R A J Madon

renault pulse-2012-2015- Car Review by Experts

The recently launched Renault Pulse is the first of the truly mass-market Renaults in India. Following on from the successful introduction of the Fluence sedan and Koleos SUV, the Pulse will in many ways drive the Renault brand into the mindspace of the Indian car buyer.

Read Full Review

By Harmaan R A J Madon

renault duster-2012-2015- Car Review by Experts

Would it be a claim too high to say the new Renault Duster is one of the most eagerly anticipated launches of 2012? Perhaps not. French car maker Renault has much to say about how the Indianised Duster with a lot of ‘masala’ will be a segment breaker. We get behind the wheel to find out.

Read Full Review

By Harmaan R A J Madon

renault scala- Car Review by Experts

In May 2011, French carmaker Renault launched its very first car in the Indian market – Renault Fluence. At the launch, Len Curran of Renault had made a promise to everyone gathered that afternoon that Renault will launch five cars across segments in the coming 18 months. In months to follow, Renault went on to launch the Koleos, followed by the Pulse and finally the Duster. And a little over 15 months since the promise was made, Renault is all set to launch its fifth car in India – Renault Scala.

Read Full Review

By Joydip Sur

renault scala- Car Review by Experts

Renault’s Scala sedan is a recent entrant to the hyper-competitive mid-size sedan segment, but has managed to carve a niche all its own. Based largely on the Nissan Sunny, Renault has tried to position the Scala as the more premium of the two, a strategy which has met with measure success. Now, Renault has broadened its product offering with the launch of the new Scala CVT. The Renault Scala CVT is the automatic transmission variant, sporting a compact and frugal continuously variable transmission.

Read Full Review

By Harmaan R A J Madon

renault fluence- Car Review by Experts

Renault Fluence heralded the car-maker entry into the Indian passenger car market back in 2011. Three years later, Renault India has launched a revised, refreshed and face-lifted version of the Fluence sedan. We get behind the wheel to see what it is all about. Read our detailed road test of the new Renault Fluence.

Read Full Review

By Harmaan R A J Madon

renault koleos- Car Review by Experts

The ewRenault Koleos receives a face-lift, two new powertrain options, and a reduced price. Does this make it a compelling proposition? We test drove the new Koleos for a day to bring you this SUV review.

Read Full Review

By Harmaan R A J Madon

renault lodgy- Car Review by Experts

Renault tasted success in India with the Duster SUV. While some of its other products have been slow sellers, the all-new Lodgy MPV has all the ingredients to make it a best-seller from the get go. Here why we think so.

Read Full Review

By Harmaan R A J Madon

Get Weekly Newsletter

What car is lauched this week? New Technology is new electric car working on? There is more, keep yourself updated weekly.

Renault Koleos Alternatives

Looking for other cars in the same segment and price range? Your choices are many. Click on any model of your choice to go directly to that page, so you can have a quick and easy reference of the specifications and features of competing vehicles in the same segment.

Maruti Suzuki Grand Vitara
Rs. 16.7 Lacs. - Rs. 18 Lacs.

Mahindra Scorpio (2008-2014)
Rs. 7.5 Lacs. - Rs. 10.6 Lacs.

Mitsubishi Outlander
Rs. 20.7 Lacs. - Rs. 20.7 Lacs.

Ford Endeavour
Rs. 19.8 Lacs. - Rs. 23.1 Lacs.

Tata Safari DiCOR
Rs. 8.8 Lacs. - Rs. 13.5 Lacs.

Chevrolet Captiva
Rs. 19.4 Lacs. - Rs. 20.1 Lacs.

Maruti Suzuki Gypsy
Rs. 6.1 Lacs. - Rs. 6.3 Lacs.

Hyundai Tucson
Rs. 14 Lacs. - Rs. 16.5 Lacs.

Honda CR-V
Rs. 21.4 Lacs. - Rs. 25.5 Lacs.

Nissan X-Trail
Rs. 22.1 Lacs. - Rs. 26.4 Lacs.

Toyota Fortuner
Rs. 22.4 Lacs. - Rs. 23.7 Lacs.

Hyundai Santa Fe
Rs. 26.3 Lacs. - Rs. 29.2 Lacs.

Rs. 32.3 Lacs. - Rs. 39.9 Lacs.

Mitsubishi Pajero
Rs. 19 Lacs. - Rs. 19 Lacs.

Mahindra XUV 500
Rs. 11.9 Lacs. - Rs. 14.4 Lacs.

Audi Q3
Rs. 27.4 Lacs. - Rs. 34 Lacs.

Mitsubishi Pajero Sport
Rs. 23.5 Lacs. - Rs. 23.5 Lacs.

Tata Safari Storme
Rs. 10.4 Lacs. - Rs. 14.6 Lacs.

SsangYong Rexton
Rs. 18.7 Lacs. - Rs. 20.9 Lacs.

Force Motors Force One
Rs. 12 Lacs. - Rs. 12.1 Lacs.

Force Motors Gurkha
Rs. 6.2 Lacs. - Rs. 8.5 Lacs.

Nissan Qashqai
Rs. 14 Lacs. - Rs. 16 Lacs.

Isuzu MU-7
Rs. 24.2 Lacs. - Rs. 24.2 Lacs.

Nissan Rogue
Rs. 25 Lacs. - Rs. 25 Lacs.

Tata Movus
Rs. 69.9 Lacs. - Rs. 72.9 Lacs.

Skoda Yeti 2014
Rs. 18.6 Lacs. - Rs. 18.6 Lacs.

Mahindra Scorpio
Rs. 8.5 Lacs. - Rs. 13.3 Lacs.

Chevrolet Trailblazer
Rs. 27.4 Lacs. - Rs. 27.4 Lacs.

Chevrolet Captiva 2.2
Rs. 25.1 Lacs. - Rs. 27.4 Lacs.

Mahindra New Age XUV 500
Rs. 11.6 Lacs. - Rs. 16.5 Lacs.

Tata Safari Strome Varicor
Rs. 10 Lacs. - Rs. 14.6 Lacs.

Mahindra TUV 300
Rs. 7.3 Lacs. - Rs. 9.6 Lacs.

Ford Endeavour 2016
Rs. 24.3 Lacs. - Rs. 29 Lacs.

Mahindra Thar 2015
Rs. 8 Lacs. - Rs. 8 Lacs.

Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class
Rs. 58.9 Lacs. - Rs. 86.4 Lacs.

Toyota Innova Crysta
Rs. 13.8 Lacs. - Rs. 20.8 Lacs.

Renault Koleos Review

No Review Available