Renault has showcased the Duster with a new BS6-compliant 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol engine, which will be launched in the country mostly next month
Renault India Pvt Ltd previously confirmed its decision to stop producing diesel engines in the BS6 era, which is certainly bad news for the Duster, since majority of the buyers opt for diesel trims of the car. In order to minimise the damage to sales, the French carmaker will soon be launching an all new 1.3-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol motor for the SUV, which will be offered alongside the current 1.5-litre mill.
Currently, Duster’s BS4-compliant petrol powertrain generates 106 PS of max power and 142 Nm max torque. The said engine will also be updated to comply with the latest emission norms in April. On the other hand, the new BS6-compliant 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol motor will be a massive step up, and will be good for 156 PS of peak power, and 250 Nm peak torque
In the BS6 era, the 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine will only be offered with a manual transmission on the lower variants. Whereas the new 1.3-litre turbo-petrol motor, codenamed ‘HR13’, will be offered with either a 6-speed manual or an optional CVT gearbox.
Apart from the mechanical changes, the Duster’s top-end RXZ trim also gets some additional equipment. Renault has equipped it with 17-inch alloy wheels, an automatic climate control and remote control for start/stop and pre-cooling the car. On the safety front, the Duster gets dual frontal airbags, ABS with EBD, rear parking sensors, hill-start assist etc.
After the launches of a host of compact and mid-size SUVs in the past year, the Duster’s sales have suffered a lot. Renault could only ship 405 units of the Duster in the previous month, as against the 900 units the manufacturer sold in January 2019. This has resulted in a 55% year-on-year decline in sales of the SUV.
The discontinuation of the 1.5-litre diesel engine also means that the Duster will no more be offered with a 4×4 setup, since the configuration was exclusive to the oil-burner. Renault currently retails the BS4-compliant Duster petrol in the price range of Rs 7.99 – 9.99 lakh (ex-showroom).
However, expect the upper value to rise further, thanks to the new BS6-compliant 1.3-litre turbo-petrol engine. The French automaker will launch the BS6-compliant version of the Duster before the BS6 emission norms come into effect on April 1 this year.