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ADRs delay Renault Captur launch

Delay: Renault has had to push back the launch of its chic Captur urban SUV, with deliveries still 12 months away.

Child-seat anchorage points and other regs stretch Renault Captur Aussie arrival

Renault logo9 May 2013

By BYRON MATHIOUDAKIS

AUSTRALIAN DESIGN RULES have pushed back the launch of Renault’s vital new sub-compact SUV, prompting the company to call for greater global uniformity.

Delayed until at least May 2014, the Captur will miss the first wave of similarly sized light-car sized crossovers led by the Nissan Juke, Opel Mokka, Holden Trax, and Peugeot 2008, as engineers work furiously to provide child-seat anchorage points, as well as other uniquely Australian-specific design regulations.

The car had been expected to arrive in the first quarter of 2013, with right-hand drive production commencing in July this year, and UK order books already open.

Speaking to GoAuto in France this week, the Captur’s deputy program manager, Christophe Pejout, confirmed the car would most likely have made it to Australia before the end of this year had it not been for the ADRs.

“Yes, it would have been on sale this year,” he said. “But the child-seat harnesses take time.”

This, said Renault Australia managing director Justin Hocevar, is a source of frustration for the company.

“Product planning challenges caused by an Australian Design Rule not deeming a European standard as acceptable can result in frustrating delays when bringing new vehicles to the Australian market,” he said.

While Renault Australia says it is too early to talk volume expectations, corporate communications manager Emily Ambrosy said the delays would hurt the company because the Captur is expected to attract new buyers to the brand.

“We anticipate this will be a very strong product for us, becoming one of our pillar models along with the new Clio, Megane and Koleos,” she told the Australian media at the Captur’s international launch this week.

“Its sales might not pass the Clio’s but it will probably not be very far behind.

“And we believe the SUV segment will continue to grow.”

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