Renault India has begun testing its next vehicle for the Indian market, the RBC low-cost MPV based on the Kwid platform. The RBC will use the CMF-A+ platform, which is essentially the stretched version of the platform. The spyshots of a fully camouflaged RBC MPV indicate a footprint that’s much larger than that of the Kwid. The RBC is expected to offer seven seats, in a three-row layout. However, the MPV will sit below the Lodgy in terms of price and positioning. It’s likely to be a low-cost model that sits under the Rs. 6 lakh mark, offering buyers an affordable vehicle at a very attractive price tag.
Considering the fact that the CMF-A+ platform hasn’t been designed with a diesel engine option in mind, the Renault RBC MPV is expected to be a petrol-only model. The 1-litre 3 cylinder petrol engine that powers the Kwid 1.0 could be offered on the MPV, albeit with higher power and torque figures.
Currently, the engine produces 67 Bhp-91 Nm on the Kwid, and these ratings could be uprated to deal with the additional load on the MPV. Five-speed manual and AMT options could be offered on the transmission front. The MPV will be front-wheel driven, and is likely to be a very light car, a la the Datsun Go+.
It will be launched in 2019 as Renault’s major new car for India next year. To keep costs low, the new RBC MPV could borrow many components from the Renault Kwid. However, this sharing is expected to happen under the skin, with styling and passenger carrying ability being the major differentiating factors. As for safety features, expect ABS and twin airbags to be offered on the car, which will have to comply with stricter crash safety norms that will come into place from next year. More details about the Renault RBC are likely to arrive in the coming months, as real world testing of this car intensifies on roads across India.