We recently reported about Bajaj Auto (BAL) showcasing the RE60, a mini ‘four-wheeler’ that was initially to be manufactured for Renault-Nissan alliance, before splitting ways and leaving Bajaj on its own to develop a car on the Ultra Low Cost (ULC) platform. Many speculated that Nissan-Renault might be interested in marketing the recently showcased car. However, the Japanese firm Nissan recently said, “there is no confirmation on that business“. On January 3, BAL had taken the curtains off its RE60 vehicle at the launch event in New Delhi.The oddly shaped car is propelled by a 200-cc 4 valve, liquid cooled, fuel injected, DTSi equipped rear-mounted engine and the ‘4 wheeler’ is aimed at attracting three-wheeler customers. It was being said that the Franco-Japanese alliance might decide on sourcing the product from BAL after having a look at it at the ongoing Delhi Auto Expo.
Motoroids on unveiling of the Bajaj RE60
“The alliance with Bajaj was for an ultra-low cost [ULC] vehicle… There is no confirmation on that business,” Nissan Motor Company’s Executive Vice-President Andy Palmer (Global Planning and Programme Management) told PTI. Earlier, as per a pact among the Renault-Nissan alliance and BAL, the Indian 2 wheeler giant was supposed to develop and manufacture the vehicle and sell it under the badge of the Renault-Nissan.In January, 2008, BAL had unveiled the a concept passenger car with an expected price of USD 3,000 and aimed squarely at the Tata Nano.The ULC car was supposed to hit the Indian roads in 2011, but the differences between the partners on pricing and design ensued a significant delay.
During the unveiling of the RE60 on Tuesday, BAL Managing Director Rajiv Bajaj had commented that if the Renault-Nissan alliance was interested in the new vehicle, BAL could manufacture a re-designed RE60 to sell under their brand name.Back then Rajiv Bajaj had said, “They have not seen the product yet. They have seen only on virtual media. They will see it in the Auto-Expo. If they are disinterested in the four-wheeler, they are free to walk away.”