Renault’s next family SUV will be called Austral, with the new model replacing the company’s Kadjar crossover when it goes on sale towards the end of next year – and it’ll remain a combustion-engined car.
The brand says that the new name for the SUV “claims the French origins of the manufacturer and evokes the colours and warmth of the southern hemisphere”.
The 4.5m-long five-seat SUV will appear in the spring, and our exclusive images show how it could look, inspired by the smaller Megane E-Tech Electric with its styling cues, such as the LED lights and the sharp, aerodynamic front end.
However, Automotive Daily understands that unlike the Megane, the Renault Austral will retain combustion engines. Underpinned by the Renault-Nissan Alliance’s latest CMF-C platform – the same architecture used by the current Nissan Qashqai – the Austral should bring improvements in practicality and space over the Kadjar.
Expect an upgraded version of the firm’s 1.3 TCe turbo petrol engine to feature with a power output of around 104kW. Efficiency and performance should be improved compared with the outgoing car, thanks to the new platform’s extensive weight saving.
Renault is pushing forward with hybrid technology in its range, with the smaller Captur crossover available in self-charging and plug-in hybrid forms. As with the Qashqai, the Austral could also be offered with electrified powertrains, with E-Tech Hybrid and E-Tech Plug-in Hybrid options available from Renault’s stable. The latter could offer an electric range of 50 kilometres.
Expect a thorough overhaul inside, with the brand’s latest OpenR Link infotainment system set to feature. Powered by Android Automotive, the set-up combines a 12.3-inch dash with a 12-inch touchscreen.