Renault has announced it has launched an automatic version of its Kangoo Maxi diesel small van giving the popular goods carrying van extended appeal to those in the market for a a capable small van with a self shifter.

The six-speed automatic Efficient Dual Clutch (EDC) transmission is available immediately in the Kangoo Maxi diesel in Renault dealerships around the country.

“We’re confident the new diesel auto will be a welcome addition to the range,” said Lyndon Healey, LCV Product Manager at Renault Australia. “Despite the increased availability of hi-torque petrol turbo engines, diesel is still the first choice for many customers.

As with Renault’s entire light commercial vehicle range, the Kangoo Maxi EDC has a three year/200,000km factory warranty and three-year Roadside Assistance.

Service intervals are 12 months or every 15,000km, whichever comes first and Renault’s Capped Price Servicing programme provides for low ownership costs with the first three scheduled services fixed at just $349 at any of our 55 Authorised Renault Dealers, nationwide,” Lyndon said.

The Kangoo range has long found favour for its easy driving nature, now further enhanced by the deletion of the clutch pedal, easing some of the grind of congested city traffic.

The two-pedal turbo diesel Kangoo Maxi uses a development of the DC4 six-speed Efficient Dual Clutch automated transmission, the same unit fitted to the 1.2 litre petrol Kangoo that was launched in Australia in February this year. This transmission has been praised for its smooth and engaging driving qualities.

The six-speed EDC is an automated dry dual clutch transmission. The ideal gear for any driving condition is selected automatically by an electronic control unit. Gearshift control is of the ‘P-R-N-D’ type and includes an ‘up/down’ ‘manual’ shift mode. A push forward on the gear lever directs the transmission to downshift, with a pull backwards to upshift.

Unlike some dual-clutch transmissions, the Renault DC4 is smooth and intuitive at all speeds and boasts an ultra-fast shifting time of just 290 milliseconds. This allows the transmission to make the most of the 250Nm of torque available from the frugal diesel engine. The Kangoo Maxi’s 81kW of power out-point its chief rivals and its 12.7 second 0-100km/h time is swifter as well.

A ‘creep-mode’ helps avoid the harsh low-speed operation that some transmissions in this segment have been criticised for in the past, while hill starts are a simple affair thanks to Renault’s Hill Start Assist, which holds the brakes momentarily as the brake pedal is released and the throttle is depressed.

The transmission features an ECO mode that can further reduce fuel consumption, making the Kangoo diesel even more attractive to running-cost-conscious customers.

There are four airbags to protect the occupants and ESC is standard.

Otherwise Identical in trim and specification to the manual six-speed Kangoo Maxi diesel, the new Maxi EDC offers a chunky 4.0m3 of load space as well as an 800kg payload, with a towing capacity of 1,050kg with a braked trailer.

The Kangoo Maxi diesel EDC is available as standard with dual sliding unglazed side doors and a pair of glazed barn doors at the rear.

The Renault Kangoo Maxi diesel EDC comes to market at a Manufacturer’s List Price of $29,990, excluding dealer delivery and statutory charges.