Renault will expand its Indian line-up in 2019 with the launch of the specially developed entry-level MPV codenamed ‘RBC’. CarToq reader Piyush Gaur recently spotted a test mule of this future model in Gurgaon.
The Renault RBC is designed keeping in mind the Indian tax structure that favours cars measuring under 4,000 mm in length. Spy shots suggest that its fascia is designed on the lines of the Renault Espace, the diamond brand’s flagship MPV that is made in only left-hand drive. The sub-4 metre MPV features a V-shaped front grille housing the large diamond logo, rectangular headlamps, horizontal headlamps, horizontal LED DRL strips, roof rails, rear wiper and conventionally hinged rear doors.
The RBC sits on a maxed-out version of the CMF-A platform called CMF-A+. Renault doesn’t have a small diesel engine and developing a new one wouldn’t make sense with the BS6 norms around the corner. So, it is expected that the company will offer only a petrol engine, maybe a turbocharged version of the Kwid’s 1.0-litre SCe three-cylinder unit. This engine will drive via a 5-speed manual transmission or an Easy-R AMT.
The Kwid has performed poorly in the GNCAP crash tests taking home just 1 star, and so, Renault may put a higher focus on the safety aspect when introducing the RBC, a more family-oriented model. On top of a more robust structure, the MPV may come with a number of safety features as standard right from the beginning, including driver airbag, driver and front passenger SBR and ABS. Many such safety features become mandatory mid next year, so there is no incentive in delaying them.
Reports say that the Renault RBC could get its name by January 2019, and the launch is expected in the first quarter of the year.