Bling it on, Koleos

The Advertiser - Motoring - - NEWS - CRAIG DUFF

AMONG the SUVs dom­i­nat­ing the bi­en­nial Beijing mo­tor show this weekend are new mod­els that will make their way, in some shape or form, to Aus­tralia.

Lead­ing the pack is the Re­nault Koleos, which should ar­rive in lo­cal deal­er­ships be­fore the end of the year. The Koleos pushes up­mar­ket with a big­ger body, bet­ter in­te­rior bling and more ac­tive driv­ing aids — the global launch high­lights its au­ton­o­mous emer­gency brak­ing, lane de­par­ture alert, re­vers­ing cam­era and auto high and low-beams.

A new por­trait-ori­ented dig­i­tal dis­play con­trols the likes of in­fo­tain­ment, ac­tive cruise con­trol and auto park­ing. In top-spec mod­els, the driver can cus­tomise the graph­ics on the in­stru­ment dis­play screen.

The Koleos is based on the Nis­san X-Trail plat­form and lo­cal ver­sions are ex­pected to mir­ror the ex­ist­ing line-up with all-wheel drive matched to petrol or diesel four-cylin­der en­gines. Ground clear­ance of 213mm and grab han­dles on the wind­screen pil­lars hint the new Koleos is ca­pa­ble of mild of­froad ex­cur­sions.

The facelifted Lexus IS, due next year, has had a rea­son­able spit and pol­ish in­side and out. The nose now fea­tures a more raked-back spin­dle grille flanked by a pair of mas­sive air in­takes in­tended to em­pha­sise the com­pact sedan’s “sportier, more ag­gres­sive ap­pear­ance”.

Other changes in­clude pinch­ing the crease on the sedan’s side, ac­cen­tu­at­ing the L-shaped rear light clus­ter and adding new wheel de­signs.

The IS goes big on the in­side with a 10.3-inch in­fo­tain­ment screen re­plac­ing the pre­vi­ous seven-inch ver­sion. Au­dio and air­con con­trols are more tac­tile and the cuphold­ers can fit ev­er­grow­ing smart­phones.

Driv­e­trains carry over: sparky 2.0-litre twin-scroll turbo four in the IS 200t, hy­brid IS 300h and, for out­right urge, the 3.5-litre V6 in the IS 350.

The Volk­swa­gen T-Prime Con­cept GTE plug-in hy­brid is a thinly dis­guised Touareg. This in­ter­pre­ta­tion of VW’s big SUV sports a wider, lower and rad­i­cally longer body based on Audi’s Q7 plat­form.

The Touareg’s growth spurt has been trig­gered by the mid­sized Tiguan’s own ex­pan­sion, as well as long-wheel­base ver­sions in some mar­kets.

VW’s re­newed push for hy­brid mo­tor­ing means it’s fit­ted with 185kW/370Nm 2.0-litre four-cylin­der turbo in tan­dem with a 100kW/350Nm elec­tric mo­tor. The com­bined out­puts are 280kW/700Nm.

The com­pany claims a 0-100km/h time of 6.0 secs. The 14.1kWh lithium-ion bat­tery pack sits un­der the cargo floor and VW says the con­cept is good for 50km and a com­bined Euro­cy­cle fuel use of 2.7L/100km.

In­side there’s a dig­i­tal driver’s dis­play dubbed the “Ac­tive Info Dis­play” and a 15-inch in­fo­tain­ment screen dom­i­nates the dash.

Re­nault Koleos, top; Lexus IS; VW plug-in, be­low

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.