Renault will launch its highly anticipated Megane E-Tech electric car in Australia at the end of the year, giving green car customers another alternative to the likes of Tesla.
Though it is not ready to lock in a price for the five-door machine, the brand says the car will cost more than $70,000 when it lands in the fourth quarter of the year.
Renault Australia general manager Glen Sealey said there was little wiggle room in the new Megan’s price tag.
“It’s really what we’ve been given,” he said.
“It’s a very different market to what it used to be.”
Comparing the Megane to Volvo’s XC40, Sealey says the French manufacturer is prioritising “value over volume” following an economic “disaster” in 2020.
The brand has deleted performance cars from its line-up to focus on commercial vans and popular SUV segments.
The new Megane E-Tech will arrive as a single model without major options for the battery and motors.
Powered by a 160kW and 300Nm electric motor driving the front wheels, the Megane has a 60kWh battery offering around 450 kilometres of range.
The Renault’s 7.4 second dash to 100km/h lags behind faster all-wheel-drive rivals.
But Renault is betting that the car’s attractive design and use of sustainable materials – particularly in the cabin – will draw customers away from established EV alternatives.
A particular point of difference lies inside a motor that does not use rare earth materials, making it a more sustainable choice.
Australian cars will have cloth seats, a digital dashboard and 12-inch infotainment display as standard.
The Mage has a high-riding SUV-like body with big wheels pushed out to each corner of the car.
A long wheelbase translates to decent legroom, though the Megane’s swooping roofline makes it a tricky proposition for taller rear passengers.