What is it like on the inside?
Chief among the Kadjar’s interior updates for 2019 is the seven-inch touchscreen, and its tile-based menu system that’s familiar from the current Megane. It’s less playschool-looking than the interface it replaces, but still not a patch on a VW Group system. Peugeot-Citroen’s touchscreens are easier to navigate too. But at least here, unlike in those cars, you still get physical climate control dials instead of infuriating sub menus buried in the bowels of the screen.
What’s more, said climate controls are no longer cheap’n’nasty parts bin items from a Nissan Qashqai. They’re bespoke chromed pieces that remind of a Jag F-Type’s HVAC system. They work well.
Does it sound like we’re clutching at straws? Well, even the most ardent Renault fan would have to admit this isn’t a cabin long on excitement. The digital dials are cheery but nowhere near as configurable as those from the VW Group. We like the inclusion of an ‘oh Jay-sus’ handle on the passenger side – it looks rufty-tufty and adds some SUV-spec intent to the Kadjar’s ambience. The seats are comfortable and the driving position offers adequate adjustment. And there’s more of a sense you’re in a tall SUV than in a Qashqai, somehow. Buyers will like that – it fits the lifestyle image.
The 1990s spec volume and media control lurking on a plastic brick behind the steering wheel remains. So does the curious placement of cruise control buttons on the centre tunnel, which is rended in hard plastic. Material choice elsewhere is plush enough, but not exceptional. That said, this doesn’t feel like an actively flimsy French car – it’s just more on the dour Nissan/Seat spectrum than it is up there with, say, a plush and futuristic Peugeot 3008. Far superior to a Kia Sportage or Ford Kuga for perceived quality, mind. New air vent surrounds and centre console chrome inserts help there.
Big rear doors open up to reveal big rear space. Why you’d need a Koleos unless you were regularly carrying felled trees is anyone’s guess. The Kadjar uses its extra on-road bulk over the Qashqai to good effect here.
The rear seats fold to reveal a flat-silled 1,478-litre boot – almost 1,000 litres bigger than that offered in five-seater mode. That’s par for this class. Meanwhile, revamped door cards mean this time, your 1.5-litre bottle will fit in the cupholder. Take that, Evian!