The Renault Duster is a little over 4 meters long and this means that the SUV falls out of the Indian government’s definition of what a compact car is. Ergo, the SUV does not benefit from a lower rate of excise, which other sub-4 meter SUVs such as the Ford EcoSport and the Mahindra Quanto enjoy. Naturally, this is a competitive disadvantage for the French offering. To work around this issue, the French automaker is said to be planning to induct the Captur into India.
The Captur, whose international variant measures 4.1 meters, will hit the chop shop to duck into the 4 meter length category. Revised bumpers at the front and rear are expected to do the trick for the Captur. There could be more to this though. With product lifecycles of mass market cars hardly making it past the 5 year mark, 2018 could herald an all-new sub-4 meter Captur, meant for India and the world. A CMF platform underpinned future is not out of the ambit.
Currently based on the Renault-Nissan B platform (also known as the V platform in India), the Captur shares its underpinnings with the likes of the Nissan Micra and the Renault Pulse. The compact crossover, which currently measures about 4.12 meters in length, is sold with 0.9 liter-3 cylinder and 1.2 liter-4 cylinder turbo petrol motors and the 1.5 liter-4 cylinder K9K turbo diesel engine.
For India, the 1.2 liter turbo petrol and 1.5 liter diesel mills could make the cut. Manual and automatic transmissions are likely to be offered, with a front wheel drive layout as standard fare. The new compact SUV from Renault is still a long way away though, with 2018 said to be the time frame for the vehicle’s arrival into the country. With 2018 a good three years away, Renault will seek to shed its “one trick pony” image in India with vehicles such as the Lodgy MPV and the A-Entry/XBA budget hatchback.
Both these cars will be launched in India this year, with the Lodgy to be launched in March, and the budget hatch to follow during the festive season. The Stepway variant of the Lodgy is also in the works for India, and the more rugged looking offering will come as a whiff of fresh air in a segment where form usually follows function.