Renault’s newest idea is a small, rugged-looking unibody ute referred to as the Niagara that previews what’s potential with the model’s new modular platform.
The corporate says the Niagara options “E-Tech Hybrid 4WD know-how” that companions an unspecified inner combustion engine that drives the entrance wheels, bolstered by a 48V mild-hybrid system, with an extra electrical motor driving the rear wheels.
Renault says the Niagara can run completely on electrical energy, whereas it has long-travel suspension and underbody safety to assist it off the crushed observe.
With its chiselled bodywork, Renault claims the Niagara embodies its new design language which is “emotional in addition to technological”.
Beneath the powerful exterior and retro-inspired digital Renault badge up entrance, the Niagara boasts quite a lot of off-road enhancements.
Though the press launch doesn’t specify this, upon inspection of the photographs, a winch is seen below the protruding entrance bumper. Underneath the bumper sits a big skid plate.
As well as, the corporate claims the Niagara has “ample” clearance angles.
The idea homes a spare wheel on a roof rack, with two extra spare wheels, a shovel and a traction board located within the tub of the ute.
The Niagara’s new modular platform is a key a part of Renault’s technique to develop its market share – and its income – in world markets.
Initially, the platform will assist 5 new fashions, all of which will likely be small to medium-sized passenger automobiles and crossovers. Automobiles will likely be assembled in quite a lot of areas, together with Morocco, India, Türkiye and Latin America.
To extend effectivity and cut back emissions, this new platform will assist conventional internal-combustion engines that may run on ethanol or LPG, and each 48V mild- and full-hybrid powertrains.
It additionally helps each front- and all-wheel drive configurations.
At this stage, the Niagara is strictly an idea. Nevertheless, if manufacturing have been to be greenlit, it’s seemingly the ute would discover success within the Latin American market, the place car-based utes are already common.
Whereas bigger dual-cab utes dominate Aussie roads, in markets like Latin America, small unibody utes are frequent with manufacturers like Fiat, Chevrolet and Ram all providing such autos.
Renault at the moment fields two utes that it sells in varied South American and African markets.
The primary is the Oroch, bought in different markets below Renault’s finances Dacia model and primarily based on the favored Duster crossover.
The Oroch is accessible with a selection of two four-cylinder engines: a turbocharged 1.3-litre and a naturally aspirated 1.6-litre. It boasts a payload of 680kg.
The second ute that Renault sells is a rebadged Nissan Navara referred to as the Alaskan, which shares its twin’s 3500kg braked towing capability and a pair of.3-litre twin-turbocharged diesel four-cylinder engine.