Renault Kwid – Important things to know

Renault Kwid

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When Renault Cars launched the Kwid, buyers bought it because it looked like a scaled-down SUV, and that’s what helped it become popular in the entry-level budget hatchback segment. Renault has also ensured frequent updates, in its latest 2019 avatar, it looks contemporary with its new look, added equipment and a refreshed cabin. The car continues to be sold with a 0.8-litre and a 1.0-litre petrol engine, available either with a 5-speed manual or an AMT gearbox.

A tiny SUV

The Renault Kwid has somehow managed to look the best in its segment, and it continues to be so. At the front, the face is new, with split headlights (now the trend) – LED DRLs above and the main headlamp unit below. The DRLs give it a very ‘expensive’ look and come standard on all variants. The huge headlamps placed on the bumper sport black bezels that get orange highlights on the Climber variant we tested. Also, the wheels are now bigger at 14-inches, giving it good stance. Ground clearance has increased to 184mm. We like the gunmetal grey plastic wheel covers on the Climber. At the rear, the new Kwid sports LED guide lamps in the tail lights along with reflectors as well. The new Kwid is also heavier and longer than the car it replaces, because of the new bumpers and the added structural reinforcements around the car.

Room for all

For those familiar with the Kwid’s cabin, it isn’t difficult spotting the changes. The steering is new and is wrapped in perforated leather; there’s even a new instrument cluster and a bigger touchscreen. The digital instrument cluster also features a tachometer, and the new 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system that gets Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The dashboard too, gets a few tweaks while the glovebox has grown in size. It also gets equipped with a passenger side airbag. On the AMT model, the gear selector knob is now positioned between the front seats. Design-wise, there is a refreshing change, but quality remains the same.

The front seats are absolutely the same, meaning you’re seated a comfortable height gives the driver good visibility of the road. Seating comfort is a bit on the firm side, but you get good under-thigh support. At the rear however, you sit with your knees up, and there’s a lack of ample under-thigh support here. Leg room and headroom are decent, but tall and broad occupants are bound to face issues. However, it’s the only car in its segment that offers a rear centre armrest. And due to bigger wheels to help accommodate the 15-inch wheels, boot space has dropped to 279 litres. Features include speed warning system and seatbelt reminders, remote central locking and power steering, an 8.0-inch touchscreen, reverse parking sensors, ABS and a driver airbag.

Peppy or not?

If you’re really in love with the Renault Cars, then we’d recommend going in for the 1.0-litre engine model. The motor produces 67bhp while the 0.8-litre motor makes 53bhp. The 1.0-litre engine is the better of the two, but it’s far from perfect. The engine can be heard inside at idle, and gets more prominent as the revs climb. Power delivery doesn’t surprise you and doesn’t have a strong bottom-end. For overtaking, some downshifting will definitely be required. Progress is made only in the mid-range and power tapers off post 4,000rpm, after which the engine gets too vocal. The 5-speed ‘box works reasonably well and the clutch is light.

At low speeds, the car isn’t as pliant as before, but the suspension manage to soak up the rough stuff, but not without making some bobbing and banging noises. However, at high speeds, the Kwid stays glued to the road and doesn’t feel like it’s about to keel over. Stability is good, and thanks to the wide tyres, it doesn’t lack confidence when turning hard into a corner. The steering, though light and easy to use, doesn’t really weigh-up at three-digit speeds. And because of the additional heft and wider tyres, the frugality has taken a hit, with figures dropping below the pre-facelift model’s.

Go for it?

The Renault Kwid is available at very affordable prices, making the product good value for money. However, the BS6 models have seen a price hike. With the new look and the added features, what’s not to like about Renault’s little car? Also, read the latest car comparisons, only at autoX.

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