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Two years after the introduction of Logan, which has already achieved sales in excess of 300,000 cars, Dacia is to extend its range with the launch of Logan MCV (Multi Convivial Vehicle). Logan MCV is an extremely spacious estate with a large load capacity that comes with all the acclaimed strengths of Logan Saloon plus a modular interior layout and enhanced versatility.

The new model can seat up to seven adult passengers and shakes up the estate vehicle market in the same way that Logan revolutionized the world of family saloons. Following its unveiling at the Paris Motor Show, Logan MCV will go on sale from October 2006 in Romania and from early 2007 in Dacia’s other major European markets. Like the saloon version, its powerplant range includes the 1.5 dCi diesel engine, a genuine benchmark in the realms of driving pleasure and fuel consumption. The car also comes with a three-year or 100,000km warranty (in most European Union countries). In perfect keeping with the Logan spirit, its price range represents incomparable value for its specification.

A simple, robust design inherited from the saloon version Like Logan Saloon, Logan MCV has been developed to cover a broad variety of often extreme motoring conditions and uses. Its technical specification was guided by a bid for strength and simplicity, as illustrated by the one-piece dashboard of the saloon version which has been carried over to the estate with a view to eliminating assembly play and ensuring first class durability. The door panels are also made from a single piece, while the choice of materials and fabrics has been dictated by the desire to reinforce the notion of perceived quality and robustness already associated with Logan Saloon. The bodyshell undergoes the same protective treatment that has forged the Logan range’s reputation for reliability and strength, including the protection of steel panels thanks to wax-injected hollow sections systematic use of mastic sealants for body panel matings and upgraded protection of the sub-frame against chipping by stones. Meanwhile, given that Logan MCV targets a much wider range of uses than the saloon, engineers have chosen to ensure additional protection for the estate version, including a number of features revealed on the Logan Steppe Concept show car. These include the use of broader door protective mouldings that also serve to reinforce the notion of strength exuded by the new vehicle’s lines.

Logan MCV features an underbody powertrain guard too, as well as an all-new solution designed to seal the gearbox and transmission internals from penetration by dust. The mechanicals are consequently fully armoured against the wide variety of outside aggressions to which they might be exposed. Combined with the new car’s high ground clearance of 155mm (an increase of 20mm compared with European norms) and long suspension travel, these features enable Logan MCV to be driven without hesitation on even the world’s roughest roads. Special attention has also been paid to thermal comfort which has been engineered to offer consistent conditions for all passengers in both hot and cold climates thanks to optimized air-vents and a 40kg/h higher airflow rate compared with the saloon version.

A range of modern powerplants Logan MCV is available with the same range of engines that have contributed to the success of the saloon version and which have already proved themselves on numerous vehicles of the Renault range. Based on a choice of three petrol engines (the 1.4 MPI, the 1.6 MPI and the 1.6 16V), plus the benchmark 1.5 dCi diesel, the Logan MCV range offers a broad selection of powertrains tailored to meet the needs of its different markets and customers.

1.4 MPI and 1.6 MPI:

two powerplants ideally suited to Logan’s positioning The 1.4 and 1.6 eight-valve engines correspond perfectly with the criteria of cost, strength and ease of maintenance that are a characteristic of all Logans. Both these engines stand out by their high torque which is available from low revs and across a broad rev band that extends from 3,000 to 4,500rpm. Despite the model’s volumes, careful attention has been paid to keeping the weight of Logan MCV to a minimum and the entry level version tips the scales at just 1,165kg. The resulting package favours both performance and fuel consumption which are of the same standard as the other vehicles produced by the Renault Group.

The 1.4-litre engine delivers a power output of 55kW (75hp) at 5,500rpm and maximum torque of 112Nm at 3,000rpm, while the 1.6 engine boasts maximum power of 64kW (90hp) at 5,500rpm and peak torque of 128Nm at 3,000rpm. Both are coupled to the manual five-speed gearbox that equips Laguna II and Mégane II.

In the case of both engines, the first three gear ratios are short to ensure good pull-away and acceleration response from low revs and to facilitate the carrying of heavy loads. Meanwhile, the longer two final gears favour fuel consumption and acoustic performance and help position Logan MCV amongst the best in its class when it comes to fuel efficiency, as testified by the 1.4 75hp version’s combined cycle fuel consumption of 7.6 litres/100km.

1.6 16V: unmatched dynamic performance Recently introduced for the saloon version, the 1.6 16V engine ensures unrivalled performance. With top power of 105hp (77kW) at 5,750rpm and maximum torque of 148Nm at 3,750rpm, Logan MCV 1.6 16V accelerates from standstill to 100kph in 11.8 seconds and boasts a top speed of 174kph. Price for price, estate cars offering such a high level of dynamic performance are few and far between.

However, it is notably for its flexibility and driving pleasure that the 1.6 16V was chosen to power Logan MCV. With 90 per cent of maximum torque available from as low as 2,000rpm, this engine offers smooth acceleration response with no flat spots at either low or medium revs. This hasn’t been achieved to the detriment of fuel efficiency however, since the combined cycle fuel consumption of this 16-valve version of the 1.6-litre engine is just 7.5 litres/100km.

The 1.6 16V is coupled to a Type JR five-speed gearbox with enhanced synchronization and cable-controlled gear shift which combine to ensure reduced travel, extra gearshift precision and therefore greater driving pleasure. Oil change intervals for all the petrol engines that power Logan MCV are just 30,000km.

Safety, a fundamental concern Logan MCV benefits from Renault’s acclaimed expertise when it comes to safety. Like Logan, Logan MCV is built on the Alliance’s B platform, the active safety features of which have naturally been carried over to the new car. The front suspension is based on the MacPherson-type layout featured on Clio II, while the reinforced rear suspension uses the same principle of a programmed deflection H-beam as the other models built on the same platform.

The rear suspension is combined with spiral springs and extendedtravel, vertically-positioned dampers which allow Logan MCV to take even the worst conditions in its stride.

Meanwhile extensive research has gone into the stiffness of the front and rear springs with a view to minimizing body movement, notably roll. The overall package ensures sound, balanced handling in all situations. As is the case with the saloon version, a front antiroll bar is fitted as standard equipment.

The brake system employs discs at the front and drums at the rear, while versions equipped with ABS come with the same latest-generation Bosch 8.0 system complete with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD) as that used for Mégane II. This system fully exploits the potential of the rear brakes.

On the passive safety front, Logan MCV is in keeping with European standards and comes with up to four airbags. The two controlled-deflation front airbags that are standard equipment across the range incorporate a system which controls the amount of pressure inside the cushion to restrict the load exerted on occupants in case of impact. Two lateral font seat airbags will also become available as options at a later date. The airbags combine with programmed structural deformation for enhanced protection in case of impact from the side. The restraint system comprises three-point seatbelts with headrests for all seats, including the third row seats of sevenseater versions.

Logan MCV also benefits from Renault’s recognized engineering expertise in the domain of resistance to impact and absorption of kinetic energy. In front impacts, the layout of the engine compartment favours the stacking up of mechanical parts.

Inside the car, the single-piece dashboard is a key safety feature in itself. Its honeycomb structure made from polypropylene, an extremely absorbent material, reduces injury to the knees in case of impact. Meanwhile, the rounded forms of the lower part of the dashboard and cubby-hole lid marry the shape of the tibia to spread out the forces resulting from an impact across the legs and ankles. The structure of the seats holds the occupants’ groins in the ideal position, while padding beneath the driver’s and front passenger’s feet protects the lower limbs. In case of impact from the side, the structure of the B-pillar protects the occupant’s groin in addition to the work that has gone into the optimizing the seats’ lateral strength and the positioning of padding inside the door panel. Careful attention has also been paid to protecting occupants from the consequences of rear impact: the fuel tank is located away from the rear underneath the floor with a view to limiting intrusion of the substructure and running gear.

Finally, Logan MCV comes with Isofix child seat anchorage points which can be mounted with the child’s back facing the direction of travel in the case of the outer second-row seats. A switch at the side of the dashboard allows the airbag to be deactivated and a warning light serves as a reminder that the function has been disabled. All these systems would enable Logan MCV to easily obtain a three-star EuroNCAP crash-test rating.

Modular and versatile

In addition to the conviviality it offers when travelling as a family, Logan MCV stands out through its exceptional modularity which permits a wide range of uses. The seatback of the third-row benchseat of the seven-seat version can be folded down (either in one piece or with a 50/50 split according to version). The entire bench (cushion + seatback) can also be tipped forward against the second-row benchseat. Once in this position, the rear benchseat can be removed quite simply thanks to ergonomically-located handles and its low weight of just 16.7kg.

The same modularity naturally applies to the second-row benchseat (60/40 split according to version) which can also be tipped forward against the front seats to maximize the vehicle’s loadcarrying capacity. All these combinations make Logan MCV particularly practical and the car can be converted from passenger carrying to the transport of bulky loads in a matter of seconds.

The loading of baggage, shopping, etc. is further facilitated by the 1/3-2/3 split asymmetric rear doors which make it possible to open just one door if required. Meanwhile, each door can be opened to one of three different angles (40, 90 and 180 degrees). The 40-degree option permits loading in situations where space is at a premium, such as in a garage or when another vehicle is parked just behind Logan MCV. This option also ensures a certain degree of intimacy with regards to the boot’s contents. The 180-degree facility comes in particularly handy when loading long, heavy or bulky items. But whatever the aperture, Logan MCV’s rear doors are easy to manoeuvre thanks to their low weight, a factor which in effect led Logan MCV’s designers to choose this solution rather than a classic hatch-type tailgate. Moreover, in certain markets where the family car also serves professionally, the unique combination of its rear doors and modular interior make Logan MCV the ideal choice for versatility.

The car’s versatility is compounded by its longitudinal roof bars which, in addition to contributing to car’s sleek looks, can carry loads of up to 100kg (European standard: 80kg). Logan MCV’s modularity can also be enhanced thanks to an extensive range of accessories that will be available at the same time as its launch, including towing gear, a ski holder, transverse roof bars, mudguards, alarm, etc.

Text and photos courtesy of Dacia

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