JOHANNESBURG - Renault’s facelifted Kwid has hit South African streets, starting at R144 900 and sporting a fresh look, improved safety and new cabin electronics. 

While the Kwid has always carried some SUV inspiration in its styling, this is further reinforced with the new model, which gets a fashionable two-tier headlight design, with ‘silver streak’ LED daytime running lights flanking the restyled grille. As it often goes with facelifts, the changes are more subtle round back but you will notice new taillight clusters featuring C-shaped LED light guides. Renault has also added a bright new colour to the menu, in the form of Zanskar Blue.

The new Kwid comes with bigger wheels (increased from 13 to 14 inches in diameter), featuring redesigned wheel covers. The larger rims also improve road holding, as does the redesigned rear axle, according to Renault.

Speaking of safety, Renault has improved occupant safety by fitting a passenger airbag as standard - in the previous model only the driver got an inflatable cushion. In keeping with the safety upgrade that took place in April this year, ABS is also fitted as standard across the board. However, there might still be some safety concerns as the previous model attained just one star for occupant protection in the Global NCAP crash tests.

As before, the new Kwid is fitted with Renault’s 1-litre normally aspirated petrol engine, rated at 50kW and 91Nm, and mated to either a five-speed manual or five-speed automated manual (AMT) transmission.

Inside, the Kwid Dynamique and Climber models get a larger touchscreen infotainment system, now measuring 20.3cm, and featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity as well as a reverse camera. 

Cosmetic changes include a redesigned steering wheel, fresh central facia, new instrument cluster, additional chrome finishes and new upholstery fabrics. As before, there is a boot volume of 278 litres, which is decent enough at the price point.

What do you get as standard then?

The Expression base model is equipped with air conditioning, power steering, electric front windows, trip computer and a conventional two-speaker radio with Bluetooth connectivity and USB/aux inputs.

Next up, the Dynamique model adds the aforementioned touchscreen system, along with rear power windows, additional chrome garnishes and brighter seat trim with red accents.

Topping the line-up is the Kwid Climber, which gets Volcano Grey wheel covers, front and rear skid plates with orange inserts, arching roof rails and Climber badges on the front doors. The Climber also gains unique seat trim.

All models are sold with a five-year/150 000km mechanical warranty, one-year comprehensive insurance cover and a two-year service plan.

PRICES

1.0 Expression manual - R144 900

1.0 Expression AMT - R154 900

1.0 Dynamique manual - R154 900

1.0 Dynamique AMT - R164 900

1.0 Climber manual - R164 900

1.0 Climber AMT - R174 900

IOL Motoring