Renault Alaskan (2017)

Our Rating: 4/5

Pros:

  • 3.5 tonne tow capacity
  • Excellent suspension
  • Lots of equipment

Cons:

  • Price

The Renault Alaskan will surprise

The Renault Alaskan is the firm’s first ever one tonne pickup and it’s going to be a global creation – this means the same model will be sold around the world. It’s launched first in South America and will be making its appearance in the UK in early 2018. It’s based on the impressive Nissan Navara and potential owners should take a close look at the double cab versions since these use a five link rear suspension with coil springs to help deliver a stable and supple ride – so it will be more like an SUV to drive rather than a traditional pickup. Renault also says the Alaskan will deliver excellent levels of fuel economy, but they declined to give figures currently, but potential owners should expect an average of 45 mpg (which is what the Navara will return). While the market for pickups is expanding, most new buyers tend to choose them for lifestyle reasons rather than for business which helps explain why Renault has opted to deliver a more car-like handling experience and higher comfort levels.

 

Reasons to buy

The Renault Alaskan offers a stylish and comfortable pickup and will be a sound choice for those who want a ‘lifestyle’ vehicle (that’s those who won’t be using it for business). The Alaskan comes with four-wheel-drive or front wheel drive and the option of an excellent seven speed automatic gearbox or six speed manual box. It also has the ability for towing 3.5 tonnes and offers good off-road abilities. For most potential buyers, the Alaskan will meet most of their needs whether that’s for working on building sites or crossing hills and forests in remote areas. It’s up against some stiff competition, particularly from the VW Amarok, but has a big bold design, lots of space in the cabin and a lot of comfort to make this a worthwhile consideration.

 

If you like the Renault Alaskan then have a look at the Nissan Navara, the Volkswagen Amarok and the Mitsubishi L200.

Running Costs

The Renault Alaskan has a 2.3 litre turbo diesel engine (it’s the same unit offered in the firm’s range of Master vans) which will produce either 158 bhp or 188 bhp. Renault says the engine delivers the best in-class fuel economy with the four cylinder twin turbocharged unit. From the Navara’s economy figures, the average return should be 45 mpg and there is some confusion as to whether UK buyers will be able to opt for a 2.5 litre petrol unit and a larger 2.5 litre diesel engine. There’s a choice of a manual or automatic transmission which helps to deliver the power effectively and it’s a sound performer around town and also comfortable on long motorway journeys. Potential buyers should expect a good level of warranty since many of the parts and design are lifted from the sister-model, the Nissan Navara.

Load Space

The Renault Alaskan as a strong chassis that will carry a one tonne payload and its fully boxed frame helps deliver workhorse abilities. The pickup will also offer a towing capacity of 3.5 tonnes with the load bed offering excellent levels of protection including an anti-slip finish, as well as being water repellent and UV resistant. There are also for quick-fit hooks to help secure loads and C-channels. There’s also a 12V power supply for the load bed which many potential owners may find useful. It helps too that the load bed is one of the largest in the pickup segment at 2.46 m³ and measures 1,560 mm by 1,788 mm for the extended cab variant. The more popular double cab will be 1,578 mm long.

Technology & Safety

As potential owners will appreciate, the Renault Alaskan is packed with technology and equipment. Among these will be a choice of two touchscreens: one will be 5-inches while there’s an integrated 7-inch display for the vehicle’s satnav. The Alaskan will also feature reversing cameras, voice-activated controls and dual zone climate control. Among the safety kit list is hill start assist and hill descent control as well as electronic brake distribution, electronic stability programme, anti-lock braking and brake assist.  There’s also an impressive monitoring system for the Alaskan’s exterior which utilises four cameras.

Performance

The Renault Alaskan will be available as a single cab, double cab and also a chassis body with a standard wheel size of 16 inches while the top end models are fitted with 18 inch alloy wheels. There is an excellent electronic limited slip differential to help deliver a surefooted drive with braking sensors that monitor wheel speed constantly – essentially, the system will detect when one wheel is rotating faster than the other and apply the brakes to improve traction which will also help boost stability.

As with the Navara, there’s a decent kit list for the Alaskan including keyless entry and a 5-inch colour touchscreen to access vehicle’s data easily. There’s also extensive connectivity and Bluetooth voice recognition as well as steering wheel mounted remote controls. Some models also come with four cameras to monitor around the entire vehicle as part of its safety system. Other equipment includes heated front seats, dual zone climate control with some models offering a 7-inch satnav system.

Specification

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