2015 Renault Lodgy Review
“Supaar Car” – exclaims one of the locals after a thorough inspection of the Renault Lodgy when we were shooting in the woods. Heartbroken at his decision to have already booked the Toyota Innova, he trudged back to his Hyundai Verna and drove off towards his farm; or whatever he was up to. This is the kind of reaction the Lodgy has been garnering with the potential clientele. Is it really that good? Does the Innova finally have a worthy foe? We find out.
The Lodgy comes from the makers who claim to have coined the MPV term. Back in 1984, the Renault Espace purportedly redefined family travel with its amazing mix of practicality, space and comfort.
The Lodgy comes to India fairly late, we believe, since it already carts around people in Romania dressed up as a Dacia, Renault’s sister brand. Anyways, better late than never, and here we are.
The Lodgy is a full size MPV, and looks like one. In fact, when parked next to the Innova, both the cars measure up quite equally. It may be a French car, but definitely doesn’t look like one, and the Lodgy might come across a little stodgy to some; strictly visually speaking.
Unlike the Honda Mobilio, which tries to push the boundaries of people carrier design, the Lodgy stays true to its people hauling credentials, coming across a friendly style statement.
The front carries a grille that looks pleasing to say the least. Full of chrome, the dual slats also have a swath of black running across. Topped off with a thick chrome lip, the grille cradles the brand’s logo in its midst. The head lamps look friendly and pretty ho-hum – no projector illumination or fancy LED DRLs here.
The front bumper is festooned with a wide, chrome lipped air dam which is flanked with round fog lamps; both ringed with chrome. The chin protrudes mildly, to add a hint of dynamism to the otherwise conservative front end styling.
Going around the sides is a small walk in itself, considering the 4498 mm length, but there’s nothing here to titillate your aesthetic senses either. The window line is mildly upswept, a couple of mild creases emanate from the head and tail lamps – and that’s all the character lines you get in profile. The slab sidedness is broken by the chrome strip running across the bottom of both the doors. Roof rails, which are meant more to enhance the car’s aesthetics than serve any purpose make their way across the ribbed roof.
The 2810mm wheelbase is actually the longest in its class, and the Lodgy rides on 185/65 JK Vectra tires wrapped around a set of 5-spoke, 15 inch alloy wheels; the design of which is a soft nod to the now late Honda Civic.
The flat rear has just one interesting detail – the tail lamps. Designed to reflect an “arrow in motion”, the tail lamps vaguely mimic the head on an arrow sideways. That one detail apart, there’s nothing interesting going around here; apart from a couple of lashes of chrome – one is the number plate header; which also bears a LODGY inscribe, while another lash can be found at the bottom of the tail gate. The lower half of the rear bumper packs a couple of reflectors and parking sensors. The button to open the tail gate reminds you of cars from the 60’s – and not in a positive way.
But apart from the jejune styling, the vehicle has a confident stance; and sits on the ground with authority. The dimensions also put it square in Innova territory, which makes it bigger than the Honda Mobilo and the Maruti Ertiga, two of its arch rivals after the formidable Toyota.