The Renault Rafale Coupe SUV is revealed as Renault’s new range-topping model with new sporty looks and hybrid powertrains.
Renault doesn’t have a glorious history of creating range-topping models that set the sales charts on fire, with stuff like the Vel Satis and Avantine struggling anywhere except France.
But it looks like Renault has decided their new range-topper should be much more appealing to a wider audience and has come up with the Renault Rafalae – named after a plane – as a posher, bigger take on the Austral.
Sitting on the ubiquitous CMF-CD Platfor used across Renault’s offerings, the Rafale is a D-Segment Coupe SUV 4.7m long and with a big 2.74, wheelbase, with new grille, big hips and a coupe roof – although Renault assays despite that there’s still bags of headroom in the back – with 40mm wider track than the Austral and rear-wheel steering.
Inside, there’s a 12.3″ digital instrument panel and a 12″ portrait infotainment running Android and with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, seating for five, optional HUD and a panoramic glass roof which can transparent to fully opaque.
At launch, the Rafale comes with a 197bhp hybrid powertrain with a 1.2-litre petrol engine, electric motor between the engine and gearbox and a Starter Generator too, with a small 2kWh battery allowing short EV running in traffic.
To follow, the Rafale will also be offered with a 295bhp AWD PHEV version with an additional motor at the back and Ev range of over 30 miles.
Renault’s Grégory Launay said:
The all new Renault Rafale is the result of a textbook case. When Luca de Meo took over as Renault’s CEO, he asked us to extract the full potential from each platform. The all new Rafale does exactly that: it makes the most of the CMF-CD platform in terms of the car’s dimensions, technology, and emotional power.
Despite the reveal of the Rafale, it’s unlikely to go on sale in the UK until well into 2024.