New Vauxhall Grandland X vs Renault Kadjar vs Skoda Karoq

The sub-Β£25,000 family SUV market has a fresh contender: Vauxhall’s Grandland X. Can the petrol version make an impression against the Renault Kadjar and Skoda Karoq?

Words By What Car? team

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Kadjar rear seats

Space and practicality

Front space, rear space, seating flexibility, boot

Finding it hard to gauge whether these SUVs are too small, too big or just about right for you? We’ll do our best to un-muddy the waters. In terms of length, they’re pretty much halfway between a Volkswagen Golf and a Passat, and when it comes to height they sit midway between a Golf and a Range Rover Sport.

They’re hardly behemoths of the road, then, but plenty big enough that you won’t have to worry about feeling cramped in the front, even if you’re well over six feet tall. The Kadjar’s standard-fit panoramic sunroof means it has the least head room, but you’d have to be a Harlem Globetrotter to find your bonce brushing the ceiling.

The rear seats in the Kadjar and Grandland X are completely conventional; that is, they don’t slide, recline or do anything clever, other than folding down in a traditional 60/40 split. The Karoq’s back seats? Well, they’re positively ingenious by comparison; you can slide them back and forth, adjust the angle of the backrests and even completely remove the seats from the car.

Assuming the seats are slid all the way back, the Karoq has the most rear leg and head room. The Grandland X has the least room for knees, while the Kadjar’s panoramic roof again does head room no favours – this time to the point that 6ft-somethings might need to slouch to fit. A word of warning: adding the optional panoramic roof to the Grandland X makes rear head room even worse than it is in the Kadjar.

Even with the rear seats slid all the way back, the Karoq still has the biggest boot; it’s slightly shorter than its rivals’ but significantly taller. We managed to squeeze in nine carry-on suitcases below the tonneau cover, compared with the eight that fitted in the Grandland X. The Kadjar’s relatively shallow load bay explains why it could swallow only six cases.

Renault Kadjar

The least viable boot here, although it’s still plenty big enough for a short family holiday. False floor can eliminate lip at the boot entrance.

Boot 537-1478 litres Suitcases 6

Skoda Karoq

SE L models gain sliding and reclining rear seats but lose the height-adjustable boot floor. That means there’s a hefty lip at the boot entrance.

Boot 479-1810 litres Suitcases 9

Vauxhall Grandland X

Grandland X has the longest load bay, both with the rear seats up or folded down. It’s also the only one of the trio with a powered tailgate.

Boot 514-1652 litres Suitcases 8

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