Launch of the second-gen Renault Duster in India seems to have been pushed further to 2019.
Launched in 2012, Renault Duster is the product which turned the fortunes of the French automaker in the Indian market. The rebadged Dacia SUV was off to a flying start because of its powerful stance, reasonable asking price and car-like driving dynamics. However, the Duster was unable to keep up with the toughening competition even after introduction of AMT, CVT and AWD variants along with innumerable special editions over the years. As of now, the sales have settled down to around 1300 units a month.
The second-gen Duster, which broke covers at the Frankfurt Motor Show in the latter half of 2017, was initially slated to hit Indian shores this year. In addition to a thoroughly revamped cabin, the second-gen Duster flaunts subtle changes to the exteriors and some feature additions as well. The same powertrains, consisting of a 106 PS 1.5-litre petrol and 1.5-litre diesel engine available in 85 PS and 110 PS tunes, are likely to be employed for the India-spec model. The India launch, however, remains unclear although it is believed that the timeline has been shifted to 2019.
Renault is of the opinion that bringing in the second-gen Duster will hamper sales of the Captur. Introduced in November 2017 with the Hyundai Creta firmly in its sights, the Renault Captur is perhaps the purest competitor the hot-selling Korean SUV has ever seen. However, as it has turned out, the Creta continues unbaffled on its mission to capture the market with the Renault just chugging along with monthly sales numbers barely reaching the four-digit territory! Save for the launch month, Captur’s monthly sales have always been less than 400 units.
The Captur is essentially a souped-up Duster and this seems to be the actual reason why customers are either opting the original 6-year-old model or going all-out and taking the Hyundai Creta. This brings us to a very important question. Should Renault prepone the second-gen Duster India launch to save its market share or remain stagnant in a bid to prevent an already-failing product from failure?
Second-Gen Duster India Launch
– Renault not bringing second-gen Duster to India in 2018 because of the Captur
– Renault Captur sales are negligible in front of its primary rival, the Hyundai Creta
– Timely launch of the second-gen Duster could actually turn the tables around for Renault once again