The small budget-beating Renault Kwid was initially launched in South Africa in 2016. Offered next to the Datsun Go as an affordable entry into personal mobility, the Kwid was immediately successful. Now, Renault has updated the quirky Kwid with a host of tech and aesthetic updates with pricing starting from R145 000.
In 2019 alone, the Renault Kwid has topped the sales charts as the French marque’s best-selling vehicle in South Africa, with over 8 000 units finding buyers, 1 050 of those sold in October. The trick is affording young professionals an entry into personal mobility at a hard-to-refuse price.
But it’s not just about the price – it’s about packaging and ownership perceptions – this is where Renault has captured a slightly larger chunk of the market share compared to its Datsun rival. The Renault Kwid is sold with a 1-yr insurance plan, two-year service plan and a five-year warranty as standard across the range.
Now with six derivatives, Renault Kwid sports three trim levels, the Expression, Dynamique and the Climber. Each of these adds more cream to the features list, the main focus of Renault’s update. The Kwid includes niceties such as a touchscreen infotainment unit with MP3, USB, AUX and Bluetooth connectivity.
Add to that the addition of Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, electric windows, aircon reverse cameras and the option of manual or Auto version of each trim.
You won’t miss the new revised front end of the Kwid now with a split-light unit design and daytime running light slits. Renault has also introduced a new colour to the palette, Zanskar Blue that stands out strongly and contrasts well with the rest of the panels and wheels.
The new Kwid is powered by a 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder engine that develops 50kW at 5 500rpm and a max torque figure of 91Nm at 4 250rpm. This engine is good for claimed efficiency figures of between 4,4 and 4,7 litres per 100km.
But what about Safety?
The biggest criticism of the old Renault Kwid was the poor safety rating and indeed the updated model will quite possibly suffer the same fire. Yes, ABS is standard across the range now, something that Renault added in 2018. And yes, now the front passenger gets an airbag too – BUT – that’s where the safety net improvement ends. Renault has reportedly tweaked the rear suspension for improved handling characteristics but this will certainly not improve official crash test results.
- Renault KWID Expression 1.0-litre SCe R144 900
- Renault KWID Expression AMT 1.0-litre SCe R154 900
- Renault KWID Dynamique 1.0-litre SCe R154 900
- Renault KWID Dynamique AMT 1.0-litre SCe R164 900
- Renault KWID CLIMBER 1.0-litre SCe R164 900
- Renault KWID CLIMBER AMT 1.0-litre SCe R174 900
Pricing remains very competitive in the segment but there are some alternatives to consider when shopping for a budget-friendly, cheap car. Hyundai’s Atos starts at R160 000 and Kia’s Picanto will set you back less than R163 000. Toyota Aygo starts from R175 000 and a VW up! just slightly above that.
A large number of SA consumers are mostly interested in what personal mobility affords their lifestyles than how unsafe it may be. The alternative mobility options are perhaps less safe, less convenient or quite simply, not as aspirational and so Renault will continue to sell the Kwid successfully, especially with the additional ownership package that is included in the price.