Collective motion in actively propelled particle systems is triggered on the very local scale by nucleation of coherently moving units consisting of just a handful of particles. These units grow and merge over time, ending up in a long-range ordered, coherently moving state. So far, there exists no bottom-up understanding of how the microscopic dynamics and interactions between the constituents are related to the system's ordering instability. In this paper, we study a class of models for propelled colloids allowing an explicit treatment of the microscopic details of the collision process. Specifically, the model equations are Newtonian equations of motion with separate force terms for particles' driving, dissipation, and interaction forces. Focusing on dilute particle systems, we analyze the binary scattering behavior for these models and determine?based on the microscopic dynamics?the corresponding ?collision rule,? i.e., the mapping of precollisional velocities and impact parameter on postcollisional velocities. By studying binary scattering we also find that the considered models for active colloids share the same principle for parallel alignment: The first incoming particle (with respect to the center of collision) is aligned to the second particle as a result of the encounter. This behavior distinctively differs from alignment in nondriven dissipative gases. Moreover, the obtained collision rule lends itself as a starting point to apply kinetic theory for propelled particle systems in order to determine the phase boundary to a long-range ordered, coherently moving state. The microscopic origin of the collision rule offers the opportunity to quantitatively scrutinize the predictions of kinetic theory for propelled particle systems through direct comparison with multiparticle simulations. We identify local precursor correlations at the onset of collective motion to constitute the essential determinant for a qualitative and quantitative validity of kinetic theory. In conclusion, our ?renormalized? approach clearly indicates that the framework of kinetic theory is flexible enough to accommodate the complex behavior of soft active colloids and allows a bottom-up understanding of how the microscopic dynamics of binary collisions relates to the system's behavior on large length and time scales.