2016 Geneva Show Highlights: When France Make an MPV

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Crossover and SUV segment are enjoying success at the moment. But the traditional segment, like MPV and van still have loyal customers from around the world, including Europe. That’s why in this year’s Geneva Motor Show French car companies unveiled its latest MPV and van.

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French car company, Citroen unveiled its latest van, SpaceTourer. For your information, the big van shares platform with Peugeot Traveller and Toyota Proace Verso which make its global premiere at 2016 Geneva Motor Show, too. Citroen said that SpaceTourer built on EMP2 platform borrowed from C4 Picasso and Grand C4 Picasso.

Its line design reminds me of Volkswagen Caravelle. The van comes up with three versions, XS, M, and XL. It has different wheelbase and load capacity where XS has 4.6 meters wheelbase and 1,978 liters load capacity, M has 4.95 meters wheelbase and 2,381 liters capacity, and XL has 5.3 meters wheelbase and 2,932 liters of load capacity.

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Inside, Citroen SpaceTourer can accommodate up to nine people. The car company promises an easy access to get in and out of the car, thanks to the sliding doors. In addition, Citroen offers two personalization types for SpaceTourer, Feel and Business. Feel type is designed for large families and brings a modular interior, with sliding seats on rails and reclining backs that can fold down, available in one of the three lengths, with five, seven or eight seats, while the latter is aimed for professional passenger transport use in mind and can seat up to 9 people.

For safety feature, carmaker offers Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Monitoring, Road Sign Recognition, Coffee Break Alert advising drivers to take a break after two hours of continuous driving, Driver Attention Alert that monitors the driver’s behavior, alerting via a sound and visual signal if the concentration level decreases, Collision Alert, Active Safety Break and Active Cruise Control. And under the hood, SpaceTourer is only powered by diesel engine BlueHDI which has range outputs from 94 hp to 177 hp.

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At 2016 Geneva Motor Show, Citroen also unveiled Hyphen Study Concept that’s based-on SpaceTourer. It’s the result of a partnership between the French automaker and a local pop group, named Hyphen Hyphen. The concept car is looked tougher than production version.

Citroen’s designers increased its ground clearance, added plastic cladding, and now wearing 19-inch diamond-cut wheels. In the cabin, you will see combination of colors such as, aqua, orange, and white. Moreover, there are Nappa leather from the roof, dashboard to the seats and door panels thick. The concept car is powered by a diesel BlueHDI 150 4-cylinder turbo. The engine is mated to 6-speed manual transmission  and an on-demand four-wheel drive system.

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Just like its sibling, besides revealing a big van Traveller, Peugeot introduced its newest concept car that’s based on Traveller. Named i-Lab Concept, it’s a high tech lounge which can accommodate four people with leather and Alcantara seats. The carmaker collaborated with Samsung in designing the interior. No wonder you will see a 32-inch tablet in the middle of the cabin that can be positioned as preferred.

Moreover, there are Wi-Fi hotspot, the Bluetooth modules, the charging docks and the virtual reality headsets featured inside are made by the Korean company. The van also comes with a 17-loudspeaker hi-fi acoustic system, supplied by three amplifiers and controlled by a Digital Signal Processor.

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At this year’s Geneva Motor Show, Renault decided to unveil the latest generation of Scenic MPV. The fourth generation is built on Renault-Nissan Alliance’s CMF platform. It means that the MPV is shared platform with latest Renault Megane. The automaker said that newest Scenic is more modern, more comfortable, more handsome than its predecessor.

The thing that makes me happy that Renault’s designers don’t put tear-like headlights on the new Scenic. So, you don’t have to make an opinion that New Scenic is shorter, but higher Talisman. At a glance New Scenic is more look like a crossover than an MPV, thanks to 20-inch wheels that makes the compact MPV higher than its previous model. Up front, we can see oval LED headlights which is accompanied by a giant Renault logo in the center of grille. Meanwhile chrome accents on the grille and above the fog lights make the MPV more elegant.

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MPV must be a practical car. And Renault knows it. New Scenic  comes with a sliding center console (13 liters of storage), 60/40-split second-row seats, one touch folding system for the rear seats (via R-LINK 2 screen or boot switch), 572 liters of luggage space plus a wide array of storage compartments throughout the cabin as well as the underfloor.

2017 Renault Scenic features 8.7-inch R-Link 2 Display that we have seen on the newest Espace and Talisman. In addition, Renault offers color head-up display and Bose Surround Sound system, featuring 11 high-powered loudspeakers as an optional.

Under the hood, Renault’s engineers put petrol and diesel engines that has range output from 110 hp to 205 hp and mated to 6-speed manual transmission or dual-clutch gearbox. The French company also plans to offer hybrid engine.

Text: Andhika Pradityo

Photos: Geneva Motor Show, Peugeot, & Renault

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