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By Charl Bosch

Motoring Journalist


Renault finally putting Symbioz into production but as an SUV

The effective replacement for the Megane hatch will be positioned between the Captur and Austral, and powered by a hybrid powertrain.


With the wraps set to come off the reimagined all-electric R5 at the Geneva Motor Show in just under three weeks’ time, Renault has released a pair of surprise teaser images detailing a new SUV that will officially put the Symbioz name into production.

Renault Symbioz: Different direction

Used on a radically different glass roof, four-seat concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show seven years ago as the follow-up to the DeZir that previewed the brand’s now previous styling language, the incoming Symbioz will transition into a C-segment SUV positioned between the Captur and Austral in Renault’s line-up.

Renault Symbioz finally happening but as an SUV
The original Symbioz concept debuted at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2017, but in a completely different form to the pending production variant. Image: Renault

In effect the replacement for the already discontinued Megane hatch, the Symbioz, whose name is derived from the Greek word “symbiosis” meaning “living together”, appears similar in size to the Austral that replaced the Kadjar last year, although at 4.41 m long, it is shorter in addition to undercutting the all-electric Megane E-Tech that measures 4.47 m long.

ALSO READ: Transition complete as Renault Espace returns as an SUV

Hybrid only, for now

Set to provide seating for five with visible styling hints from the latter, the Austral and the model it is based on, the long wheelbase Espace, the Symbioz is expected to ride on the same CMF-D platform as the latter pair, with power confirmed to come from a hybrid powerplant.

While more units are expected to be announced in due course, for now, only the E-Tech 145 mill has been mentioned, which, as in the case of Captur and Clio, combines a normally aspirated 1.6-litre petrol engine with a 1.2-kWh battery pack driving two electric motors.

Renault Symbioz finally happening but as an SUV
Although similar in look to the Austral, the Symbioz is shorter and also undercuts the Megane E-Tech on overall length. Image: Renault

The translates to a combined system output of 145 pferdestarke (PS) or 107 kW delivered to front wheels through the four-speed multi-mode transmission that loses the clutch and synchromesh for a dog ring design.

When combined with pair of electric motors, the result is an automatic gearbox six ratios already used on the Clio and Captur, plus their respective Mitsubishi badged twins, the Colt and ASX.

In addition to the hybrid drivetrain, Renault has confirmed the availability of the same panoramic glass roof as on the Scenic E-Tech that becomes transparent or opaque as a means of countering the absence of a roller band it says has been omitted purposely in order to avoid impacting on overall headroom.

More details soon

Confirmed to go on-sale in the European spring that runs from March to June, more details of the Symbioz is expected to be revealed before then in preparation for the still to be confirmed global launch date.

NOW READ: Renault Austral debuts as electrified Kadjar replacement

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