Renault launches compact SUV Duster

July 5th, 2012 - 5:44 am ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 4 (IANS) French automobile major Renault Wednesday launched its compact sports utility vehicle (SUV) Duster in one petrol and two diesel versions. The three variants are priced between Rs.7.19 and Rs.11.29 lakh.

The compact SUV is available with 1.6 litre petrol engine and a 1.5 litre diesel engine that has been mated with two different horsepower — 85 and 110.

The petrol powered SUV has a fuel mileage of 13.24 km per litre (kmpl), while that of 85 horsepower has a mileage of 20.45 kmpl and 110 horsepower of 19.01 kmpl.

According to the company, the new compact SUV will become its flagship product in India.

“We don’t believe that the value propositions provided in this car can be found in any other car at this price,” said Marc Nassif, managing director, Renault India.

“We are looking at customers of premium hatchbacks and compact sedans that upgrade for a bigger car.”

The company has already received 4,000 bookings for the Duster. Renault aims to sell 30,000 cars overall this year on the back of the Duster, compared to 1,500 cars last year.

India will be the fifth country globally to produce the Duster after destinations such as Brazil, Russia and Romania.

The company is also gearing up to export the Duster made at its Chennai facility to countries such as the Britain by December this year.

“India will be the right-hand drive global hub for Duster. We are also looking at exporting the car to other countries after the UK,” Nassif added.

The mix-breed vehicle has the looks and space of an SUV, coupled with convenience and safety features of a sedan.

The company has ruled out four-wheel drive and automatic versions of the car.

The SUV’s nearest rival– Ford EcoSport is expected to hit the market early next year.

Currently, Renault has three models in the Indian market - the premium sedan Fluence, the luxury SUV Koleos and the premium compact - the Pulse.

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