The Kwid is Renault India’s latest small car on sale across India. With extremely competitive prices and a good blend of practicality and efficiency, the Kwid is the French carmaker’s take on the highly competitive small car segment in India. Named after the concept car that was shown at the 2014 Auto Expo, the Kwid finds its’ underpinnings on the Renault’s CMFA platform and is being produced at their Chennai factory with up to 98 per cent localisation.
As a small car, the Kwid stands out from the crowd, thanks to its flared wheel arches and a forward leaning stance giving it a muscular appearance. It is the first car in the Indian market to debut the French automaker’s honeycomb grille and new headlight design featuring a C-shaped chrome trim. It gets an aggressive front bumper design that extends outwards and in the top spec variants houses the fog lamps.
The side profile reveals the heavily flared wheel arches and a forward leaning stance. The windscreen sharply rakes towards the rear. There is plastic cladding at the base of the doors which are the colour of the wheel arches and basically serve the purpose of rub strips. At the rear, the glass section is small and slopes forward while there is a sharp lip on the middle of the boot door. The plastic cladding sits right below the boot door and houses the number plate.
Inside, there is a lot of component sharing with a few bigger cars in Renault’s range and the result is a pretty compelling cabin featuring piano black trim with chrome inserts that look upmarket. But being a strict budget car, the equipment list is short but sweet. As for variants, Renault India is offering the Kwid in up to six variants: Standard, RxE, RxE (O), RxL, RxT and RxT (O). The top-spec RXT (O) gets a 7-inch touchscreen Media-Nav system, digital instrument cluster, remote keyless entry with central locking, one-touch lane change indicator and front fog lamps as standard.
Engine and gearbox
The Kwid is powered by a 799cc three-cylinder unit that produces around 53bhp and 72Nm of torque. Power goes to the front wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox. There will be no diesel model, but a 1-litre model with higher power figures has been showcased at the Delhi Auto Expo and will arrive soon.
This 12-valve engine has been newly developed for the Kwid, keeping in mind the car’s lightweight nature. The Kwid, in fact, is the lightest car in its class and performs well both in terms of drivability and efficiency. In fact, Renault is claiming a class-leading fuel efficiency of 25.17kmpl for this vehicle.
Price and competition
The Renault Kwid is now on sale and is being offered in Standard, RxE, RxE (O), RxL, RxT and RxT (O) variants. The car competes with the Tata Nano, Datsun Go, Hyundai Eon and the Suzuki Alto 800.