Renault does well in Russia, and the market is important enough to the French automaker that it's unveiled its latest car in Moscow. The Renault Latitude is described as a "business class" sedan, which translates to a crisply-styled, generously-sized car carrying luxury and tech features. The Latitude will spread into other markets this fall, and the European version will debut at the Paris Motor Show, carrying powertrains and some altered styling details from the Russian-spec versions that just bowed.
Powering the Latitude are a 2.0-liter, 139-horsepower four-cylinder backed by a CVT, or a 2.5-liter, 177-horse version of Nissan's VQ V6 mated to a six-speed automatic. Drivers are attended to by massaging seats, and niceties like three-zone climate control, sound systems by Arkamys and Bose, and a Carminat TomTom navigation system are some of the equipment details. Chassis bits are borrowed from both Renault and Nissan cars; the front reportedly comes from the Renault Laguna and the rear multi-link setup is from the Nissan side of the family.
Buyers can start lining up to buy the Latitude at the end of September in Morocco and Algeria, and the car will be rolled out in Russa, Ukraine and Africa shortly thereafter. The Latitude is definitely coming to continental Europe, and a decision on whether to offer the Latitude in the United Kingdom will be forthcoming. Want to know more? The press release is posted after the jump.
RENAULT UNVEILS LATITUDE IN MOSCOW AND ANNOUNCES
LOCAL PRODUCTION OF THREE MODELS
- World debut for Latitude at the Moscow International Motor Show
- On sale at the end of September in Morocco and Algeria, then in Russia and Ukraine and in Africa
- European version will be unveiled at the Paris Motor Show and will feature a specific engine line-up, fascia and exterior detail
- Renault introduces Duster, the new automatic Logan, Sandero and Sandero Stepway (in complete knock down, CKD), as well as Fluence and Mégane Hatchback (semi-knock down, SKD). These vehicles will be produced locally from 2010-2011.
Renault has ranked as the number-four brand in Russia since April and its market share has risen to 5.3%, with 50,801 cars sold in the first seven months of this year. Logan has maintained its position as Russia's top-selling imported car.
THE RENAULT LATITUDE: THE WORLD OF BUSINESS CLASS
Renault is giving a world premiere of its new business class saloon in Moscow. This elegant car combines balanced proportions, with classic design, and spaciousness. This car will appeal to customers who appreciate superior quality materials and comfort in all its forms. Latitude embodies the best technical advances in terms of reliability and efficiency and is destined to become the flagship model of Renault's range of cars.
It goes on sale in Russia in the autumn and will then be released in a further 50 countries around the world.
THREE NEW MODELS FOR LOCAL PRODUCTION IN 2011: FLUENCE, MÉGANE AND DUSTER
Renault is expanding its range of models that will be produced locally:
- Semi knock down (SKD) production of Fluence and Mégane hatchbacks will be launched in the Moscow Renault plant in the first half of 2011
- Complete knock down production (CKD) of Renault Duster will start in Russia towards the end of 2011
Fluence went on sale on the Russian market in April of this year. Customers appreciate this car for its size, characteristics and position between the C and D-segment. The Mégane hatchback has been sold in Russia since May this year, expanding Renault's C-segment offer.
Renault Duster is a reliable, safe, comfortable, easy to drive, and affordable 4x4. It is built on the B0 platform (Logan platform) known for its durability and reliability. Economical to run and affordable, this genuine 4x4 is an unrivalled offer in the car market and is certain to be a success in Russia. Russian versions of Duster will include specific interior design, equipment and engines to appeal to the tastes and demands of the market.
RENAULT FLUENCE Z.E. CONCEPT: FUTURE ELECTRIC CAR FROM RENAULT
In Moscow, Renault is presenting Fluence Z.E. Concept, the high-tech, attractive, spacious, electric family car developed with the aim of creating a long-awaited affordable vehicle with zero CO2 emissions. Fluence Z.E. Concept previews the forthcoming Fluence electric car, which will have a range of up to 100 miles and zero CO2 emissions.
A BRAND THAT MAKES "PEOPLE'S CARS"
Renault is popular in Russia first and foremost thanks to its star models, Logan and Sandero, which are both prime examples of an unrivalled balance between price and quality. Logan is the best-selling foreign car in Russia. Sandero has already sold in large numbers since its launch in Russia in March this year and it is largely thanks to these two models that Renault has reached fourth place for car sales in the market. Both models target the budget segment which occupies one third of the Russian car market and more than 80% of Renault sales in Russia. More than 290,000 people have bought a Logan since its launch in 2005 and more than 9,000 Sandero have been sold the launch in March this year.
Renault will expand its offering to the Russian market next month, where the mix of automatic cars represents a third of the market, with the long-awaited release of the Logan and Sandero automatic.
Renault has released an unprecedented number of new models onto the Russian market this year:
- Six new models have debuted in the first six months alone: the updated Logan and new Sandero hatchback are the company's best offerings in the budget range. The C segment range has also been completely updated: the elegant Fluence, the new Mégane and the compact Scenic, as well as Mégane Coupe, all went on sale at the end of last year. And for 'hot hatch' fans, the new Clio Renaultsport 200 has been available since June
- Renault is continuing to update its entire range during the second half of this year with the immediate release of two new commercial vehicles, Kangoo and Trafic, and the most eagerly awaited of all Renault's new releases, Latitude, which will soon be the flagship model of the company's new vehicle range.
RUSSIA – A KEY MARKET FOR RENAULT
Russia is a strategic market for Renault and the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Together the Renault-Nissan Alliance and AvtoVAZ plan to capture 40% of the Russian market by 2015.
With three production sites in Russia, the partnership will have an overall production capacity of 1.3 million cars in 2012 with the Moscow Renault plant (production capacity 160,000 cars per year), the Nissan plant in St Petersburg (50,000 cars per year) and the AvtoVAZ production facility in Togliatti (1.1 million cars per year).
The partners are currently implementing a production system for the Alliance in the Togliatti plant and a joint production line for the manufacture of cars based on the B0 (Logan) platform with a capacity of 350,000 vehicles per year. Each of the three brands will produce models of their respective ranges on this line. Lada will be the first of the three carmakers to produce its vans and estate cars here.
In addition, the Renault-Nissan Alliance and AvtoVAZ united their quality and supplier development teams in March 2010. The joint team is working on making quality improvements to the Russian supplier base. The qualitative and quantitative development of suppliers in Russia, a country where local production is the key to success, will be advantageous to all the partners and the goal for all three companies is to have 74% of components manufactured locally.
RENAULT LATITUDE: THE WORLD OF BUSINESS CLASS CARS
Renault is giving the world premiere to its new saloon in Moscow. This elegant car combines balanced proportions, with classic design, generous exterior dimensions, roominess and a large boot. This saloon embodies the best technical advances in terms of reliability and efficiency, and is destined to become the flagship model of Renault's range of cars. Latitude goes on sale in Russia in the autumn and will then be released in a further 50 countries around the world.
- Length – 4,887mm; width – 1,832mm; height – 1,483mm; wheelbase – 2,762mm
- Boot capacity 477litres
- The elbow room is one of the best in its category – 1,460mm in the front, 1,440mm in the back
- There are many storage compartments, including the generously proportioned 9.6 litre glove compartment, which is both illuminated and cooled, whilst the compartment next to the main console has a capacity of 2.4 litres
- The driver's seat has a massaging function with four different settings
- The triple-zone automatic climate control system allows the driver and each of the passengers to achieve their preferred temperature
- An air quality control management system with a dual-mode air ioniser with double fragrance diffuser – a first in the D-segment
- A hands free electronic key card that controls the central locking, ignition, and automatically locks the car when the driver walks away
- Directional bi-xenon headlights
- A wide range of audio systems including "3D Sound by Arkamys®", as well as the first class "Bose® Premium" system with digital audio connector.
- A new satellite navigation system, Carminat TomTom® (available the beginning of 2011), as well as rear-view camera and automatic parking brake
- The choice of a dynamic and efficient two-litre petrol M4R engine with a continuous variable transmission (CVT) or a powerful VQ25 2.5 litre engine with a six-speed automatic AJ0 transmission.
- Independent multi-link rear suspension
- The most up-to-date active and passive safety features of the car were developed using Renault's unique experience in this area: anti-lock and EBA (emergency brake assist) come as standard together with ESC (Electronic Stability Control), eight airbags with a two-tier system of lateral sensors, seat belt retractors with integrated load limiters, a cruise control system and directional bi-xenon headlights
- The reliability, safety and durability of the car are based on the joint technologies and technical achievements of the Renault-Nissan Alliance: the cars are put through extensive road testing and trials in extreme conditions to guarantee the highest standards of quality, which is of the utmost importance in countries with difficult road conditions. Not forgetting the highly valued manufacturing experience of the Busan plant where Koleos is already being manufactured.
THE RENAULT LATITUDE: BIG ON THE OUTSIDE, BIG ON THE INSIDE
With such generous external dimensions (length – 4,887mm; width – 1,832mm; height – 1,483mm), Latitude easily falls into the category of large saloon. The wheelbase stretches 2.76 metres and the front and rear overhangs are 1.02 metres and 1.1 metres respectively. The intelligent adaptive bi-xenon headlights compliment the contours of the chrome grill. The boot compartment is one of the best in the category: 477 litres (511 litres without the spare wheel). The size of the optional electric panoramic sunroof makes it stand out from others in the category.
The vehicle and onboard comfort controls are all within easy reach with all located around the steering wheel and central console. The interior features; chromed door handles, dial rims, and gear lever, all emphasising the car's status as a business class saloon. Customers can either choose between a dark grey interior with dark leather, and a dark beige interior with beige leather.
FOR LONG JOURNEYS
Latitude was developed using the combined expertise of Renault and Nissan. The comfortable and silent driving experience, precise handling chassis, and high tech engine give it the decisive edge over its rivals. Latitude inherited the front part of the chassis from Laguna, which is well known for its excellent handling, whilst the rear multi-link suspension from Nissan provides an unrivalled level of comfort. These features actively dampen bumps and other irregularities in the road, remove vibrations, thereby smoothing the whole car driving experience, and making it equal to the best cars in its class.
In Russia, Latitude will come with a choice of two power plants. The 2.5 litre V6 generates 130 kW (177 hp) at 6000 rpm. Combined with a six-speed (AJ0) automatic transmission, it delivers a torque of 233 Nm at 4400 rpm and can accelerate quickly and easily reaching a top speed of 131mph. The combined fuel consumption is 29.1mpg.
The other option is the M4R engine with a 2.0 litre capacity with 102 kW (139 hp) 6000 rpm. Along with the excellent continuous variable transmission CVT, this engine is both versatile and efficient with a maximum torque of 191 Nm at 4400 rpm. The combined fuel consumption is 34.0mpg.
Latitude will propose a wide range of engines and six-speed manual and automatic gearboxes which customers in different countries will be able to choose from. The 2.0 dCi (M9R) is available in a choice of power outputs: 110 and 127 kW (150 and 175 hp). For some markets there will also be the choice of V6 dCi (V9X) with 177 kW (240 hp) or a petrol V6 3.5 litre (V4Y), also with 177kW (240hp).
AIR QUALITY AND PREMIUM CLASS COMFORT
Based on the same architecture as the new SM5, recently launched in the Korean market, Latitude benefits extensively from the joint developments and expertise of Renault, Nissan and Renault Samsung Motors. The comfort and interior acoustics have become the subject of much attention. The driver has a whole array of functions that are as useful as they are original.
Latitude is one of the first D-segment cars to include a massaging function in the driver's seat and the new triple-zone automatic climate control system. The driver's seat contains five pneumatic massaging rollers, with four operating modes: constant, intermittent, soft and firm. The precise motions of the flexible pneumatic rollers on the spine have a relaxing effect during long journeys or long periods of time stuck in traffic.
The vehicle also features a unique interior air quality control management system. The triple-zone automatic climate control system allows the driver and each of the passengers to individually regulate the temperature inside the vehicle. The system, which is based on the "best in class" system used in the Laguna, is also capable of controlling the composition and characteristics of the air in the car. As well as a filter, which prevents dust and unpleasant smells from entering the vehicle, Latitude features a dual-mode air ioniser. It not only emits healthy negatively charged ions, but purifies the air by removing allergens and harmful bacteria. The driver and passenger can also take advantage of the double fragrance diffuser to fill the car with a pleasant aroma with refill cartridges that may be obtained from any Renault dealership.
ALL THE RIGHT CONNECTIONS
Latitude features all the latest on-board technical equipment capable of a multitude of functions. For example, each model has a Bluetooth® connection as standard. The following audio systems will be available depending on model:
- All Latitude will include a 3D Sound audio system by Arkamys® with six speakers. It also includes a CD and MP3 player, as well as a 3.5mm "jack" and Bluetooth®
- The top of the range Latitude features an extra two speakers and the "Plug & Music" system, which facilitates the connection of most external media players, including iPod
- The exclusive Bose® Sound System is available as an additional extra. It provides perfect sound production in the cabin, includes 10 speakers (including the central channel and subwoofer) and also a multi-channel amplifier with equaliser.
Latitude comes with a Carminat TomTom® satellite navigation system which is completely integrated into the onboard systems, and its accuracy and quick response time are a marked improvement on other navigation systems. This satnav will include such features as "IQ Routes"® (statistical route optimisation), "Advanced Lane Guidance" ® (visual junction display) and "Mapshare" ® (proprietary map improvement technology). This satnav will be available in Russia from the beginning of 2011 and will be combined with an integrated automatic parking brake and rear view camera.
Latitude has all the various types of equipment needed to make driving the car easier and more comfortable: the next generation hands-free key card, front and rear parking sensors, cruise control, ESC and directional bi-xenon headlights.
QUALITY AND SAFETY ARE "IN THE GENES"
In terms of quality and reliability Latitude features components designed by the Alliance and assembled according to its standards. The vehicle thus benefits from the excellent results achieved by Renault in these areas. The Renault Samsung Technical Centre (RSTC) at Giheung, near Seoul, has taken charge of the project on the basis of elements pre-determined by Renault. Teams from Renault Samsung Motors have worked closely with Renault's and Nissan's teams on all aspects of production of Latitude, from validation and design to development and manufacture. Renault Samsung Motors has been market leader in South Korea for eight years running and quality of design and build is part of the company's DNA and is widely acclaimed by customers. Constant emphasis is placed on service quality, not only at point of sale but throughout the vehicle's life.
Safety has always been the first priority in the development of this car. There is a whole range of safety features: ABS, EBA (emergency brake assist), EBD (electronic brake distribution), ESC (electronic stability control) as well as passive safety features: eight adaptive airbags, passenger and driver restraint and load limiter seat belts. Latitude has the same two-tier side impact sensors and dual chamber airbags as the Laguna.
THE LATITUDE AT ALL LATITUDES
Latitude is the embodiment of the international Renault Company. Developed in France and South Korea and incorporating elements of the platform from Renault and Nissan, this automobile incorporates all the best achievements in terms of technology, the fields of aerodynamics, safety, comfort and quality.
Latitude is manufactured in South Korea in the Busan Renault-Samsung-Motors plant. This production site is respectful of the environment and is certified ISO 14 001 and has great experience in the production of cars of higher automotive segments. Today, together with Latitude, the Busan factory produces Renault-Samsung-Motors models SM3, SM5, SM7, QM5 and Renault Koléos.
Latitude will make its first public appearance at the Moscow Motor Show, and will go on sale at the end of September in Morocco and Algeria, then in Russia and Ukraine and in Africa.
The European version will be unveiled at the Paris Motor Show and will feature a specific engine line-up, fascia and exterior detail.
A decision on the possible UK launch of Latitude has not yet been made.
Potential international customers will be able to discover more about the car at www.renault-latitude.com.