Since Australia has rejected the Renault Alaskan, reports from Down Under suggest that a new Renault bakkie might be on the cards. In a statement from Renault Australia’s managing director, Anouk Poelmann said that the company is “not walking away” from the bakkie segment but that they were looking at “other opportunities”.
While Renault Australia has scrapped plans to offer the Renault Alaskan, Poelmann has hinted at a new version; likely a restructured Mitsubishi Triton. This shouldn’t come as a surprise as it is a very popular car in Australia and Renault has already offered the Alaskan in some parts of the world with similar underpinnings to that of the Nissan Navara and the Mercedes Benz X-class.
Why The Renault Alaskan Was Denied
Initial reports hinted at a right-hand-drive Renault Alaskan for Australia but, as we now know, that decision was shut down. According to Poelmann, “the Alaskan was not suitable, because its suspension was tuned for the European lifestyle market. The Aussie Ute market is more workhorse-based and developing suitable suspension for the Alaskan would have been too expensive.”
The introduction of a new Renault bakkie could either be soon on the current platform or approximately three years from now when the next Mitsubishi Triton will be released. Speaking of cars within the Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi alliance, the next Nissan Navara is also due but probably only in 2024.
Will It Be A True Renault Bakkie?
If you consider that Renault is in a powerful alliance with Nissan and Mitsubishi, they all share common platforms. This not only gives them a massive advantage in technology but also saving in development and the procurement of parts.
However, Renault, Nissan and Mitsubishi remain vigilant in their efforts and do their due diligence in maintaining their own identities. After all, the last thing any of them want is for people to see their vehicles as rebadged versions of one another.
Managing Director of Renault Australia, Poelmann, confirmed that “while her company was absolutely investigating an alternative, they wouldn’t want to assume it is quick and easy”.
She continued by stating that: “It would be a true Renault; it would look different. The whole organisation is under new wings. We look at product planning and product development through new and fresh eyes.”
Will South Africa Get A New Renault Bakkie?
We’ve touched on the Australian market but how does this affect South Africa? Of course, they have promised to bring us the Renault Alaskan (only in 2021) but with the new Australian right-hand drive bakkie, will there be enough room in the market? Whether we will get a Renault bakkie in the near future based on the Mitsubishi Triton, only time will tell.
While we all wait in bated breath, why not browse the large selection of new and used Renault vehicles on our website.