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Renault bets on diesel for 2007

Keeping in step with the dramatic increase in popularity of diesel-powered passenger cars in Australia this year, Renault has rushed two new diesels into its model line-up.

The bustle-backed Megane II range will be boosted to include a 1.9-litre turbo-diesel, while the Laguna gains a 2.2-litre turbo-diesel.

Both engines are Renault's latest dCi designs, are Euro-IV emissions level compliant and use common-rail technology pressurised to 1350 bar, ensuring fuel is injected into the cylinders in minute droplets for more complete combustion.

Advanced "multi-vane" turbocharger technology means the engine responds quickly to the throttle at low speeds but when the pace picks up, it behaves like a larger turbo with plenty of urge for highway overtaking.

Did someone say frugal? European tests have yielded a micro-car sized appetite of just 4.6 litres/100 kms during highway running from the manual Megane 1.9dCi.

The first car in the world to be awarded the maximum five-star safety rating by the Euro-NCAP testers, the Laguna has seen some minor interior and exterior revisions to enhance its appeal.

The Megane II has received a more extensive visual makeover and now comes with the latest-generation 8.0 Bosch ABS, complete with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD) and Emergency Brake Assist which ensure that maximum use is made of the car's braking power when you need it most.