Elec­tric model adds buzz to Kan­goo range

New Zealand LCV - - 2017 VAN GUIDE | RENAULT KANGOO 1.6 -

THE BIG NEWS ABOUT RE­NAULT’S KAN­GOO IS THE ELEC­TRIC ver­sion that joined the petrol 1.6-litre in the New Zealand range dur­ing 2016.

The elec­tric Kan­goo – dubbed the Kan­goo E – made busi­ness news headlines when Air New Zealand an­nounced it was buy­ing 28 for it on­air­port ve­hi­cle fleet.

It was a shot in the arm for the rel­a­tively slow-sell­ing lit­tle French work­horse which saw the Kan­goo’s 2016 sales rise to 62.

The Kan­goo deal is part of a ma­jor pro­gramme in which Air NZ is re­plac­ing pis­ton-en­gined, fos­sil fuel-burn­ing, ve­hi­cles on its na­tion­wide fleet. The air­line’s Kan­goos are long-wheel­base Maxi ZE mod­els.

The van’s elec­tric mo­tor de­vel­ops 44kw of max­i­mum power and 226Nm of peak torque. It doesn’t have a con­ven­tional gear­box and uses a re­ducer trans­mis­sion. Top speed is 130km/h, and it ac­cel­er­ates to 50mk/h in 5.5 se­conds.

The range be­tween charge-ups is 80km to 125km, and charg­ing takes six to nine hours. Low rolling re­sis­tance 195/65 R15 tyres are fit­ted to 15-inch rims.

The elec­tric Kan­goo has a kerb weight of 1505kg, a max­i­mum pay­load of 650kg, and can tow a 322kg braked trailer; cargo vol­ume is four cu­bic me­tres.

When Re­nault re­leased the Kan­goo city van lo­cally in 2013, there was a choice of diesel and petrol en­gines

Cur­rently, it’s sold only with a 1.6-litre Euro 5-com­pli­ant four-cylin­der petrol engine de­vel­op­ing 79kw of max­i­mum power at 6000rpm and 148Nm of peak torque at 3750rpm.

Kan­goo buy­ers can choose be­tween a five-speed man­ual gear­box or a four-speed au­to­matic, and the van is front-wheel drive.

Up front there’s room for two and be­hind the driver and pas­sen­ger there’s a win­dow­less steel bulk­head on the au­to­matic. The man­ual has a tubu­lar bar­rier be­hind the driver.

The au­to­matic’s bulk­head is in up­per and lower sec­tions which can be un­bolted and re­moved to­gether or singly.

An op­tional Vis­i­bil­ity Pack can be fit­ted to both mod­els at added cost. It con­sists of a bulk­head with a rear win­dow, a rear-view mir­ror and re­vers­ing cam­era.

The Kan­goo comes stan­dard with a left-side slid­ing door and a right­side door is an added-cost op­tion.

The rear barn style doors open to 180 de­grees and have win­dows and a wind­screen wiper.

The Kan­goo’s cock­pit has a clean lay­out and a dash­board-mounted gear lever.

Stan­dard equip­ment in­cludes an AM/FM CD/MP3 sound sys­tem, and plenty of stor­age spa­ces, in­clud­ing an over­head shelf.

The re­mote au­dio con­trols are mounted on the steer­ing col­umn be­hind the steer­ing wheel and the trip com­puter switchgear is mounted at the end of the right hand side wiper stalk. Cruise con­trol and speed-lim­iter con­trols are on the in­di­ca­tor left-hand stalk.

The Kan­goo has elec­tri­cally-wound front win­dows, an engine im­mo­biliser, Blue­tooth func­tion­al­ity with stream­ing, a 12-volt out­let, AUX and USB in­puts, and man­u­ally-con­trolled air-con­di­tion­ing with a pollen fil­ter.

Among the other stan­dard equip­ment are ABS anti-lock brak­ing with emer­gency brake as­sist and emer­gency brake force dis­tri­bu­tion, trac­tion con­trol, sta­bil­ity con­trol, dual front airbags, and cen­tral door-lock­ing.

The Kan­goo’s three cu­bic me­tre cargo space fea­tures side wall pro­tec­tion, light­ing, and 10 strate­gi­cally-po­si­tioned cargo tie-down points.

Re­nault quotes a 611kg pay­load for the man­ual Kan­goo, and three kilo­grams less on the auto.

Im­por­tantly, the Kan­goo’s tight 10.7-me­tre turn­ing cir­cle gives it plenty of ma­noeu­vra­bil­ity in tighter sit­u­a­tions, and makes it easy to park.

The man­ual is priced at $29,990 man­ual and the auto at $31,990.

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