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Renault Kangoo Maxi
Very smart and very practical – all that black plastic is very useful in a scrape

Renault Kangoo Maxi LL21 Energy dCi 90 Sport Phase 2

What is it?

IF you wanted to buy a small van and lined up the possible contenders, you’d soon be falling over yourself looking at all the alternatives.

It’s the most hotly-contested sector in the business van world.

And, to be honest, there isn’t a bad one in the bunch.

But new models are popping up all the time and it is well worthwhile studying the form carefully before buying as every time a new one appears, it inevitably features improvements either in ride and handling, fuel economy, technology or build quality – or indeed all four.

Take the Renault Kangoo for example.

It was launched in its present form in 2008 so is well due for a wash and brush up.

Then last year Renault clinched a deal with Mercedes-Benz in which it now builds a heavily modified version of the Kangoo – called the Citan – produced on the same production line as the Kangoo. This put the Gallic original under even more pressure. (Click here for our Business Vans review of the Mercedes Citan).

This’ll take loads of up to 2.7m (9ft) long. Fantastic in a van of this type! Ply-lining is £200 extra and worth every penny

But now Phase 2 Kangoo has finally arrived on UK shores with new looks plus nips and tucks in the ride, handling and fuel economy departments – so we’ve whistled up a Maxi Sport version to see just how good these improvements are.

Before we get down to business though, we must mention the price differences between the Renault Kangoo and the Mercedes Citan.

When the German rival was launched earlier this year it carried a price premium of between £1000 and £2000, resulting in much muttering among pundits about whether or not it was justified.

Looking at the Phase 2 Kangoo price lists, that premium seems to have disappeared and both vans are roughly the same, give a bob or two.

Our review vehicle, for example, weighs in at £15,850 ex-VAT whereas the equivalent Citan 109CDI Extra Long Blue Efficiency costs slightly less at £15,525.

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