Were you expecting a highly-upgraded Fluence diesel from Renault? Car maker Renault India today pulled the rooster out of the hat, launching a new diesel variant of its premium sedan ‘Fluence’ in the country.
What to expect?
Redesigned turbochargers and re-profiled fuel injectors: The new Fluence will be powered by 1.5 litre diesel engine, which will give a mileage of 20.4 kilometre per litre. The new dCi motor does get redesigned turbochargers and re-profiled fuel injectors.
Better engine power: The engine power output has been updated to 110 PS from the current 106 PS.
Fuel efficiency: Renault is claiming a fuel economy of 20.4 kmpl.
Competitors: The new Renault Fluence will compete with the likes of Volkswagen Jetta, Skoda Laura and Toyota Corolla Diesel— all of which are priced between Rs 15.22 lakh and Rs 16.41 lakh.
More expensive: The Renault Fluence E4 D gets a revised price tag now at Rs 15.20 lakh which is slightly higher than the previous Fluence E4 D. The Renault Fluence is a good car for money, but the major chink in its armour was the weak diesel powertrain. The new 1.5-litre dCi diesel motor will manage to improve that. The upgraded diesel trim will carry forward all the goodies of petrol CVT variant. With four airbags, pass key, dual-zone climate control and a Bluetooth compatible media unit high levels of comfort and safety, will also not be compromised with. The new Fluence E4 D variant also comes with 16 inch alloy wheels, ESP and traction control, leather seats, rain and light sensors–and thus will justify its humongous pricing.
What not to expect?
No Automatic transmission: The upgraded Fluence won’t include an automatic transmission, as was expected.
Torque output: The torque output is still the same at 240 Nm but the torque curve has been re-profiled for better drivability, keeping in mind India’s traffic.
Marc Nassif, Renault India Managing Director told PTI today, “We had announced plans to roll out five products by the end of 2012. The next in line is our crossover Duster, which will be launched before Diwali, and it will be followed by one more product.” He said all the products will be assembled at its facility in Chennai.
Renault’s plans for India?
Marc Nassif, Renault India Managing Director told PTI, “Fluence was the first offering from Renault in India. The new upgraded variant is about our commitment to the Indian market and is a result of the feedback we received from our customers”.
Renault India MD said that the company is targeting to sell a total of 30,000 cars in India this year compared to about 1,500 units in 2011. To push up its sales, the company is also expanding its dealership network to 100 by 2012 from 43 at present.
When asked about reports that Renault India is looking to set up a new facility in Gujarat, Nassif said: “When we will saturate the 4 lakh annual capacity at the current facility,we will look at expansion. We are open to choosing any location, but when and where, only time will tell”.
Talking about Renault-Nissan’s ultra-low-cost car project with Bajaj Auto, he said Renault India’s hand are full with its existing priorities in the country.
“This project is being taken care of by the alliance at the global level and we (Renault India) are not at all concerned about it. Any decision will be announced by the alliance,” he added.
Will you buy Renault Fluence?
With inputs from PTI