Based on one of its main competitors, the Renault Kiger is the newest member of the budget compact SUV segment to hit our shores. Its cousin, the Nissan Magnite, is even built in the same factory, but it doesn’t mean they are same. Renault has ensured it is out to compete with the likes of the Toyota Urban Cruiser, Suzuki Vitara Brezza and Kia Sonet.
KIGER LIKE TIGER
The Kiger replaces the once popular Sandero and you will see a bit of this sibling in the design of the Kiger. It is all very much Renault. It is no doubt a good-looking car, kind of sporty yet bulky. It’s got the high ground clearance to boot along with aluminum finished skid plates, and a sporty rear window with integrated spoiler. The top of the range model, named the Intens, is distinguishable by a two-tone body colour. And speaking of colours, you can choose between Cool White; Planet Grey; Moonlight Grey; Mahogany Brown Caspian Blue and Radiant Red.
It’s roomy inside, but there is one glaring obviously issue. The lack of cupholders in the centre console. There is place in the doors for larger bottles, but for those who may want to travel with a cup of coffee, you will have to opt for the cupholder accessory at time of purchase. It might seem like a small thing to be focusing on off the bat, but it is a huge oversight by Renault. Let’s hope they put that extra accessory in at no extra cost!
Where they have excelled is with extra storage space throughout the cabin, there is 29-litres of it. The centre bin is deep and a good place to hide your goodies, but there are also other spots throughout. The boot is claimed at 405-litres which is quite sizeable and makes it one of the bigger in the segment.
Like many of its rivals, the Kiger boasts an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Bluetooth connectivity, and USB port. It also sports a built-in MP4 video player, smart access, and automatic climate control, not to mention the reverse camera on the higher specced Intens model.
The three-star Global NCap safety requirements ensure the Kiger comes with a host of safety features from ABS with EBD to Isofix and impact sensing door lock. The top of the range models come with four airbags and electronic stability control.
UNDER THE BONNET
The Kiger is powered by either a naturally aspirated 1.0-litre engine which gives you 52 kW and 96 Nm, or you can opt for the 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine, which would be my choice as to get the extra oomph in the form of 74 kW and 160 Nm. This can be mated to a manual or CVT box.
Look, it would probably not be my choice, BUT, if you are in the market for a car and you hate the clutch, you could get the naturally aspirated 1.0 mated to a five-speed AMT, but just know that it is not going to be a spirited drive by any means. And the ‘box might drive you mad. If you’ve driven the Kwid with this same pairing you will know what I mean.
PRICING OF THE NEW KIGER
The Kiger comes with a five-year/150 000 km mechanical warranty and a model dependant service plan.
- KIGER Life 1.0L R199 900
- KIGER Zen 1.0L: R214 900
- KIGER Zen 1.0L AMT R224 900
- KIGER Zen 0L Turbo R249 900
- KIGER Intens 1.0L Turbo R269 900
- KIGER Intens 1.0L Turbo CVT R289 900