NEXT RENAULT SEDAN: Renault’s fourth generation Laguna could make its debut later in 2015 with a launch expected in 2016. Image: Automedia
Renault’s fourth generation Laguna was spotted undergoing testing.
Renault design chief Laurens van den Acker confirmed the news at the 2014 Paris autor show, defending the notion that sedans are becoming less meaningful in the automotive space which is currently dominated by four-door ‘coupes’ and SUVs.
He confirmed the new Laguna would be a “D-segment” model, likely meaning a rival to the likes of the Mazda 6 and Volkswagen Jetta.
NEW MITSUBISHI SEDAN?
The new model is also expected to spawn a D-segment sedan from Mitsubishi as part of a wide-reaching alliance between Renault-Nissan and Mitsubishi.
Van den Acker said the new model is an important one for the French brand despite medium-sized sedan sales dipping off: “Even though in Europe it’s a segment that is under pressure, nonetheless, it holds its own. It declines, but very slowly. In my view it’s an important segment to be in, for your image as a car company.
IMAGE GALLERY: 2016 Renault Laguna
“It’s a very important segment for Asia. Go to Korea or China, or any Asian country, and the D sedan is the ultimate. It’s a very important segment for the US. There are big markets where it’s still very important.
“This is why it’s important for us to expand into Asia more aggressively and into China starting in 2016 because without those markets we couldn’t afford to do these cars. In Europe the competition is tough, especially because it’s a very brand-conscious market.”
“I think the next D sedan, I’m very proud of. I’m pleased to make a car that you can park next to a BMW or Mercedes and get away with it, and it has a Renault badge.”
That aside, Renault has been relatively tight-lipped about the model but they have already announced it will ride on the Common Module Family (CMF) architecture and be a "high quality product" with "fluid and emotional" styling.