Designed to suit a range of applications, the larger engine has a capacity of 1,461cc and is being tuned to produce between 65bhp and 80bhp. Badged dCi, it will make its first appearance in the Renault Clio supermini before it is used in the British-built Nissan Almera and the replacement Nissan Micra. The smaller dCi unit is also due to go under the bonnets of the Clio and Micra.
'Our diesel engine production is 850,000 units a year, but the intention is for this to rise to 1.4 million. Buyers are switching to the new generation of higher efficiency engines and we intend to raise our market penetration,' said a Renault spokesman. Developed jointly with Delphi Automotive Systems, the small dCi engines feature an advanced injection design claimed to raise torque output and cut noise levels. A Delphi spokesman said: 'Our tests show that the 1.5 is capable of returning under 4.5 litres per 100km (62.7mpg) in the mixed European cycle when fitted to a Clio-type vehicle.'