Renault could be the latest in the long list of car makers taking to automated manual transmission (AMT) technology in a big way. The French automaker’s cut-price offering, the XBA/A-Entry hatchback, which will take on the Alto 800, is likely to pack in AMT technology. The Renault XBA/A-Entry will make its debut in India next year, and will use a newly developed 3 cylinder-800 cc petrol engine. This petrol engine, code-named the BR08, is being put together at the Renault-Nissan Technical Center in Chennai, a city that also hosts the Renault-Nissan joint manufacturing facility.
Like most modern petrol engines, the BR08 petrol motor powering the XBA will use 4 valves/cylinder and a twin overhead cam layout. With significant engineering inputs coming from India, the 2015 Renault XBA/A-Entry hatchback will also see heavy localization. The car will share parts and its CMF-A platform with the Datsun RediGo, Nissan’s own iteration of a low cost hatchback aimed at mopping up big volumes in India. Renault also has plans of exporting the XBA/A-Entry from India, and the export variants of the car are likely to use a 1 liter petrol engine. However, Renault has no plans to offer a turbo diesel engine on the XBA/A-Entry hatchback.
In India, the XBA/A-Entry hatchback will be the least priced Renault car, sitting under the Pulse in terms of price nd positioning. The car is likely to be close to the 3.5 lakh rupee mark, as a competitor to the likes of the Maruti Alto and WagonR models. The XBA hatchback’s debut in India will also mark the arrival of the Common Module Family (CMF) architecture in a Renault car sold in India. The CMF architecture is Renault-Nissan’s answer to the Volkswagen group’s MQB platform. This architecture is expected to underpin most new Renault, Nissan, Datsun and Dacia cars sold worldwide. Parts, platform and production facility sharing, and joint product development are the four hallmarks of the CMF architecture.