Renault planning fresh entry-level car models for India

French carmaker Renault is looking to strengthen its position in the mass Indian market by introducing more entry-level models, with reports suggesting it will add two or three new products based on the Kwid platform over the next four years or so.

Renault will utilise the CMF-A+ platform, which is a little bigger than the CMF-A platform, for the new products in the Indian market.

Speaking to Autocar Professional, Gérard Detourbet, managing director, Alliance A-Segment development unit, said, ''It's clear that we did not create the platform (CMF-A)  only for one car. On each platform we can develop a lot of things. Not only because we can use different types of bodies but also because we have a lot of possible branding.''

Renault has been doing good business in India primary due to two models – the Kwid hatchback and Duster SUV. Kwid has particularly helped the automaker to increase its market share to nearly 5 per cent, according to International Business Times.

First to arrive will be a sub-4 metre seven-seat MPV (codename RBC). The CMF-A+ is flexible enough to form the basis of six or seven different body styles, the company says. This platform could also give birth to a compact SUV (codename HBC).

The Renault Kwid based compact SUV could arrive before 2020 to rival the likes of the Maruti Vitara Brezza and Tata Nexon. By 2022, Renault will bring the Kwid EV to India. The Kwid-based electric car is undergoing testing in China and will come to India after its launch there.

Renault India is currently in need of more volume drivers. Sales of the Kwid witnessed a year on year drop of 20 per cent over the April-October period. While the Captur may give sales a push, the company needs cheaper models to increase its market share from the current 3.37 per cent (October 2017 data).

Meanwhile, a report in claims that Renault has already patented the Dacia Sandero and Dacia Logan MCV in India. Both cars are entry-level models produced jointly by Renault and its Romanian subsidiary Dacia since 2007, currently in its second generation. Renault has no plans to bring Dacia in India and so the new entry-level models from Renault could be rebadged Sandero and Logan MCV.

Dacia Sandero goes up against the Suzuki Celerio and Kia Picanto in the European markets. If Renault decides to bring it here, it will go up against Maruti Suzuki Celerio and Tata Tiago. The Logan MCV, on the other hand, is expected to go up against Datsun Go+ and Maruti Suzuki Ertiga in the affordable MPV segment.