Renault will launch its Megane E-Tech Electric SUV locally the fourth quarter of this year, and has said it will be priced in the early/mid-$70,000s range.
The French brand will sell the vehicle through its 58 dealers, rather than offering it only online, but has acknowledged it won’t be cheap.
“That notion that EVs will get cheaper I just haven’t seen it yet, at all,” Renault Australia boss Glen Sealey told CarExpert.
With a price tag in the $70-75,000 range, the Megane E-Tech Electric will face down the likes of the base Hyundai Ioniq 5 ($72,000 before on-roads) and Kia EV6 ($72,590 before on-roads) – both of which are larger vehicles.
The Megane E-Tech Electric was recently approved for sale locally by the Australian Government, with documents listing two variants: the Techno and Iconic.
Only one powertrain was listed, with 160kW of power and 300Nm of torque. The official 0-100km/h claim for this powertrain is 7.2 seconds.
It’s powered by a 60kWh battery, with a claimed 470km of range under the stricter WLTP test cycle.
There’s no mention in the documents of the smaller 40kWh battery or 96kW/250Nm entry-level powertrain offered in Europe.
The Megane E-Tech Electric model expected to hit Australia supports DC fast charging at up to 130kW, and AC charging at up to 7.4kW.
The listed braked towing capacity is 900kg, with an unbraked towing capacity of 750kg, while the Megane E-Tech Electric’s tare mass is 1642kg. The documents also list a choice of 18- or 20-inch alloy wheels.
Under the skin is the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance CMF-EV platform which it shares with the Nissan Ariya.
Inside, there’s a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a 12.0-inch vertical infotainment system with Android Automotive.
Built around Google’s Android Automotive, the infotainment system is called OpenR Link. It can be updated over-the-air, and supports the sort of gestures familiar to iPhone or Android phone users.
It has a full suite of Google apps including Google Maps, Google Play and Google Assistant, but also features Apple CarPlay.
Depending on the variant there are various upholstery trims available for the European market including a choice of textile, Alcantara, and faux leather upholstery.
In entry-level and mid-spec cars overseas, the seat upholstery is made from 100 per cent recycled materials.
Safety technology includes autonomous emergency braking, lane-keep assist and blind-spot monitoring.
The Megane E-Tech was first revealed at the Munich Motor Show in 2021, and went on sale in Europe early in 2022.
It will join the latest small electric van, the Kangoo E-Tech Electric, in the brand’s local line-up. It’ll also come as the current, petrol-powered Megane R.S. heads out the door.