Renaut Duster competes against the likes of Hyundai Creta, Kia Seltos, Maruti S-Cross and Skoda Kushaq
Renault Duster is widely credited for kickstarting the compact C-segment SUV space in India when it first launched back in 2012. While the SUV had a firm grip in the market for first few years, new arrivals in this segment in the form of Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos, dented the popularity of the crossover from the French carmaker.
Since the last few years, Duster sales have only dwindled down. With stiffening competition in this space with more fresh arrivals in the form of Skoda Kushaq recently and Volkswagen Taigun later this year, a prospect of growth in terms of sales for Duster looks highly unlikely.
Renault will be discontinuing the compact crossover from India later this year, reports Economic Times. The last unit of the C-segment SUV will roll out of its assembly line in Renault’s manufacturing facility near Chennai, Tamil Nadu in October 2021. Component manufacturers have been notified about the same.
As previously stated, sales of the SUV have been dwindling over the past few years due to stronger rivals in the segment now. In addition, the model hasn’t received any significant updates ever since it was launched in India barring a couple of minor facelifts.
The current Duster looks basic and outdated in comparison to its Korean rivals. Post its BS6 update, the SUV lost its diesel-powered variants as well as the much-revered AWD variant which contributed to its downfall. The company is losing money on every unit of Duster it sells, hence taking it off the shelves makes sense.
New-Gen Duster in India
However, fans of the Duster nameplate need not worry as the French carmaker is likely to be replacing the current-gen Duster with a new generation model after some time. While an exact launch timeline of the new-gen model is not available, for now, we expect the company to bring the new Duster to India in 2022.
Renault India’s Managing Director, Venkataram Mamillapalle confirmed that the company is working on bringing a new-gen model of Duster at the earliest. The new-gen Duster is currently on sale in many European markets from 2019 and was recently given a mild facelift earlier this year. The same iteration of the crossover is expected to hit the Indian market in 2022. Recently, the French carmaker also filed patents for the design of the new-gen Duster in India. Further details would be confirmed in the coming months.
Duster in India is offered with two engine options- 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol unit and a 1.3-litre turbo petrol unit. The former can generate 105 bhp and 142 Nm of peak torque while being paired to a 5-speed manual transmission as standard. The latter is rated to deliver an output of 154 bhp and 254 Nm of peak torque.
Transmission duties on this unit are either carried out by a 6-speed manual or a CVT automatic gearbox. The new-gen Duster is likely to retain the latter 1.3-litre unit for the Indian market. It is currently priced between Rs 9.86 lakh and Rs 14.25 lakh (ex-showroom).