Renault Kangoo vs Citroen Berlingo

Does Renault’s new Kangoo make the most of its van-style shape? We pitch it against Citroen’s budget MPV class leader to find out...

In a class that burst on to the scene only 10 years ago, the Renault Kangoo is part of the established order. The original car’s all-round practicality, chunky looks and polished dynamics helped to define the budget MPV sector. Until now, it has always lived in the shadow of its bigger selling rivals, but the all-new model is aiming to take pole position and become the best cut-price people carrier around.

However, it faces stiff competition from another French model when it arrives here next month. Along with its Peugeot Partner Tepee sister car, Citroen’s Berlingo Multispace is the current class leader. Its gigantic cabin, economical diesels and attractive prices make it a daunting opponent.

We pitted the £13,300 1.5-litre dCi Kangoo, in top-of-the-range Expression trim, against the £12,815 Berlingo VTR 1.6 HDi. But which one claimed class honours?

Verdict

BUDGET MPVs do exactly what their names suggest – and that means we increasingly take their enormously spacious and practical interiors and floaty ride comfort for granted. What sets the best examples apart is the fact they add a hefty dose of charm to the mix.

The all-new Kangoo meets the basic requirements, but it doesn’t go far enough to topple our class favourite. While its diesel powerplant is clean and economical, it’s too noisy, plus the attractive interior is let down by cheap plastics and a poor-quality finish.

In contrast, Citroen’s Berlingo is quieter, feels much classier inside and provides superior refinement over long distances. At £12,815, it also represents better value for money. This budget MPV does more than it says on the tin – exceeding expectations, rather than simply meeting them.

Most Popular

New 2021 Audi RS 3: 395bhp mega hatch priced from £50,900
Audi RS 3 Sportback - front
Audi RS3

New 2021 Audi RS 3: 395bhp mega hatch priced from £50,900

Full exterior and interior reveal for Audi RS 3, with aggressive styling and racy cabin to match strong performance
19 Jul 2021
New 2021 Kia EV6 boasts up to 328 miles of range
Kia EV6 - front
Kia EV6

New 2021 Kia EV6 boasts up to 328 miles of range

Kia reveals more specs for its bespoke electric car, with the EV6 offering long range and an 18-minute 80 per cent rapid recharge time
21 Jul 2021
New MG 5 EV 2021 review
MG 5 EV - front
MG MG5 Hatchback

New MG 5 EV 2021 review

The MG 5 EV has been updated with a bigger battery, meaning it now boasts a 250-mile range
21 Jul 2021