UPDATED: Read detailed roadtest of the Lodgy (click to read)
The Lodgy marks Renault’s maiden attempt in the flourishing MUV (multi utility vehicle) segment in India. Available only with diesel engine options, the Lodgy comes in a choice of two seating options – 7-seater and 8-seater. The Lodgy is based around the same platform as of the Renault Duster.
Prior to its launch in India, the Lodgy was already on sale in certain European markets. Albeit, in those markets it is sold under ‘Dacia’ brand (Renault’s budget arm). Since it has been on sale for long in global markets, the Lodgy is a well proven product- which kind of shows. Apart from carrying a Renault badge, the Lodgy sold in India has also been tweaked and enhanced for our market. It gets more premium styling upgrades such as a redesigned front chrome grille, swept back headlamps, stylish rear tail-lights, leather upholstery and more. Although, the overall profile is a bit too boxy in compromise for a roomy cabin which may not be to many people’s liking, yet it manages to look contemporary.
The Lodgy is available in two different states of tune of the Renault’s widely used 1.5-litre K9K diesel engine. While the more powerful engine tune focuses on driveability and performance, the lower powered version is tuned for efficiency. Besides that, the higher powered version comes with a 6-speed manual gearbox, whereas the lower tune has to make do with a 5-speed manual gearbox.
The biggest USP of the Lodgy are its dimensions- which by far are the best in the segment. It has the longest wheelbase in comparison to its current rivals, which translates into plenty of space for the occupants inside the cabin. The 7-seater version features two captain seats in the middle-row, whereas the 8-seater has a flat middle-bench. There’s ample of headroom for rear passengers; the elbow room is also one of the best in the segment and the seats offer excellent cushioning and support. There are also top-mounted a/c vents for rear passengers.
Compared to the spacious second-row seats, the third row offers limited space and is best suited for children or two adults at max. That said, it is not cramped or discomforting for short trips. The luggage capacity (with the third row up) is impressive with over 200 litres of storage area.
On the inside, the Lodgy MPV features most of the equipment and features from the Duster SUV. The interiors look upmarket and sport a dual-tone dashboard, a three-pod instrument console, steering mounted controls for infotainment, cruise-control, a MediaNav infotainment system with navigation and circular air-con vents. The quality of the materials used on the inside is also satisfactory, if not stellar.
Safety net includes ABS, brake-assist and two front airbags for driver and passenger on the Renault Lodgy.