Set to arrive in the European showrooms by April this year, the updated Renault Lodgy will also make way to India later this year of early next year. Seen with revised exteriors, the Lodgy facelift continues with same engine options as before.
Based on the same platform as the new Duster, the 2017 Renault Lodgy looks sportier than before. This is due to the revisions in the front like new grille, garnish around the registration plate, and new 16 inch 5 spoke alloys. The more sporty Stepway variants get Flexwheel 16-inch Bayadère Dark Metal alloys.
On the inside, changes include a new four spoke steering wheel, redesigned air vents, new horn pad on the steering, dashboard with new satin-chrome touches, and a Stepway 3D weave upholstery. Most of the features remain same as offered with the current Lodgy like reverse park-assist camera, arm rest, folding table for rear seat passengers, one touch window function for driver, etc.
To recap, the Renault Lodgy is based on the Duster’s platform and is powered by the popular 1.5-litre K9K diesel engine. The 85 PS version employs a 5-speed manual transmission while the 110 PS version adopts a 6-speed manual gearbox. Same options will be on offer with the facelift in India as and when it is launched.
Speaking about Lodgy’s performance in India, it has not been as per expectations. Sumit Sawhney, CEO and MD of Renault India feels that the Lodgy should have a monthly sales average in the region of 1,500 – 2,000 units. But it does sales of about 300 to 400 units monthly as of today. The not-so-encouraging numbers are mainly due to the dwindling popularity of the MPV segment as a whole. The emergence of compact crossover SUVs has been pressurizing every other segment in the vicinity.
In an attempt to improve sales of the Renault Lodgy MPV, the automaker also decided to market the vehicle aggressively in the taxi operator segment, which was not done when the car was first launched in 2015.
The 7-seater has been struggling in a market where popularity of MPVs is fading.
Mr Sawhney adds that giving Lodgy access to the fleet operator and corporate segment will bring in significant increment in sales. While the wholesale numbers are expected to go up this month, retail numbers for the Lodgy is pegged at around 1,000 units. The company launched a new variant which is suitable for taxi fleet operators. This segment is expected to account for around 50% of the MPV’s sales in the future. But in spite of this, sales of Lodgy did not improve. The launch of facelift could help the company improve sales.