New Kangoo takes the two-wheelbase route

Date: Thursday, November 15, 2007

How will Renault ward off the threat posed by Peugeot's Bipper, Citroën's Nemo and Fiat's Fiorino? With a short-wheelbase version of its new Kangoo Van, that's how.

Based on the Scenic platform, both Kangoo models made their worldwide debut at this year's European Road Transport Show.

Go for the short-wheelbase Kangoo Compact and you get a 2.3m3 load area and the ability to shift a 500kg cargo. Select the standard wheelbase and load cube rises to 3.0m3 and you can transport from 650kg to 800kg depending on which model you select.

Flatten Compact's passenger seat and you've just boosted load space to 2.9m3. Do the same to the standard Kangoo and it goes up to 3.6m3. Both facilities are optional.

Customers can pick from a 1.5 dCi diesel at 70hp, 85hp or 105hp or a 1.6-litre petrol lump at either 90hp or 105hp. Both engines are on offer with a five-speed manual gearbox with the most powerful of the diesels sold with a six-speed. No matter whether you're talking petrol or diesel, the 105hp option isn't available in Compact.

ABS is standard, both vans boast a cleverly designed cab interior and can be ordered with a TunePoint system. Sitting in the glovebox it allows the cab's occupants to listen to their own music collection via three ports for connecting USB keys, MP3 players and iPods. A hands-free Bluetooth connection is also available.

Up for grabs with two trim levels, the new Kangoos won't be on sale in Britain until the second half of 2008. Renault may lose out slightly as a consequence given that Bipper and its stablemates look set to arrive here next spring.

Click here for the rest of the news from the show. 



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