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Renault Kangoo Maxi Crew Van 2014 Review

EXPERT RATING
7
James Stanford road tests and reviews the Renault Kangoo Maxi Crew van, with specs, fuel consumption and verdict.

All work and no play makes for a dull van. Thankfully, Renault has introduced a new compact hauler that can be used for both purposes.

The Kangoo Maxi Crew is aimed at small business owners who need a cargo van for day duty, as well as a people-mover to use after hours. It's the first passenger-oriented Kangoo to be sold in Australia.

DESIGN

There is a people-mover variant of the Kangoo in Europe, but Renault Australia went for the dual purpose Maxi Crew.

The Maxi Crew features a second row of three seats that can be folded down almost flat when the space is needed to carry a load. The row splits 60-40 to accommodate larger cargo items.
When they are in position, the cargo area measures 1.3-metres. When folded down, this expands to 4.0-metres, and the payload is 740kg.

Renault has an optional cargo barrier to fit behind the second row. There soon will be an innovative cargo barrier to go behind the front or second row of seats. 

VALUE

Renault quietly introduced a facelifted version of the Kangoo range six months ago but has only just started selling the Maxi Crew, at $27,990. Some minor interior and exterior revisions came with the update but, more importantly, there is a new diesel engine from the Megane that is more refined than the last.

ENGINE / TRANSMISSION

The short wheelbase Kangoo is available with petrol or diesel power while the longer wheelbase Maxi and Maxi Crew are diesel only.

In the entry-level van the 1.6-litre four-cylinder(79kW/148Nm) turns a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic (yes, the auto only has four forward ratios). The 1.5-litre four-cylinder common rail turbo diesel(81kW/240Nm) is available only with a six-speed manual.

SAFETY

The Maxi Crew has front and side airbags for the driver and front passenger but no curtain airbags for second-row occupants. Electronic stability control is standard.

DRIVING

In the Maxi Crew, it doesn't take long to notice how refined the diesel engine is compared to the grumbly last-generation oiler. This new one is relatively quiet at idle and its smooth power delivery really impresses.

Driving one of these all day would no longer be a chore as it really feels more like a passenger model than a commercial vehicle. This is no doubt helped by the extra seats, which absorb some of the road noise and odd frequencies that can make driving a van tiresome.

The interior looks a little more modern, although the plastic surfaces are still hard. Thankfully, Renault has ditched the poorly designed audio of the previous generation Kangoo (which was also in some passenger vehicles), which had the smallest buttons known to man.

Tradies with big, chunky fingers had next to no chance of pressing the correct button. The rear seats are fairly flat but are substantial. These are not flimsy foldaway seats for short trips. You can sit on these for hours.

A few hours in the Maxi Crew illustrate that it's an impressive all-rounder.

Pricing Guides

$13,990
Based on 23 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
Lowest Price
$7,913
Highest Price
$16,999

Range and Specs

VehicleSpecsPrice*
1.6 SWB 1.6L, ULP, 5 SP MAN $7,913 – 13,999 2014 Renault Kangoo 2014 1.6 SWB Pricing and Specs
Maxi 1.5L, Diesel, 6 SP MAN $12,880 – 15,488 2014 Renault Kangoo 2014 Maxi Pricing and Specs
Maxi Crew 1.5L, Diesel, 6 SP MAN $15,990 – 15,999 2014 Renault Kangoo 2014 Maxi Crew Pricing and Specs
EXPERT RATING
7
Pricing Guide

$10,999

Lowest price, based on 8 car listings in the last 6 months

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