With the increase in demand for petrol-powered SUVs with automatic transmissions and with limited competition in the segment, Renault have decided to join the fray.
There a few options when it comes to petrol SUVs with an automatic gearbox. Introducing a Duster with an automatic option might give Renault an edge over the Hyundai Creta if priced right. Currently, the Duster is available with an AMT in India for its diesel variant and internationally they also have a dual-clutch option for the diesel. In the Renault-Nissan alliance line-up they also have the Terrano petrol with an AMT available in India. Therefore, it is highly likely that the petrol Duster will get the same treatment (AMT). However, word on the street is that the 1.6-litre engine will remain unchanged but will be mated to a CVT gearbox. The engine produces 104 PS at 5,750 rpm and a peak torque of 148 Nm at 3,750 rpm.
The current petrol Duster Rxe and RxL variants are priced at Rs 8.90 lakh and Rs 9.72 lakh (both ex-showroom, Pune). We can expect the petrol automatic to be priced about Rs 75,000 north of the manual variants. The suspense will be short-lived as Renault intend to launch the car this May.
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