New Renault Master: next-gen Ford Transit rival coming in hot

The first of Renault’s next-generation of vans will be available with a choice of combustion-engine or all-electric power

Renault has announced the next-generation of its large Master van will be revealed before the end of November, with the brand beginning to drum up some hype for the debut of its new Ford Transit rival by sharing a shadowy teaser image a more aerodynamic panel van silhouette. 

There’s no denying it still looks like a large panel van, but upon closer inspection we can see the windscreen is more steeply raked and the roofline slops off subtly towards the rear. Renault claims the new Master’s “Aerovan” shaped body, along with a new braking system, have helped boost efficiency. That manifests itself as reduced fuel consumption for combustion-engined versions and an all-electric Master E-Tech that will use up to 21 per cent less energy than the current model. 

Exactly what this means for the new Master E-Tech’s driving range isn’t clear at this time. But considering the current Master E-Tech can only cover up to 126 miles on a single charge, while the Ford E-Transit will reach 196 miles, and the right Fiat e-Ducato can do up to 230 miles in one go, we expect that there’ll be a sizable increase in this department. 

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It’s possible that the new Master E-Tech will be available with a range of battery sizes, like the e-Ducato and the second-generation Mercedes eSprinter unveiled earlier this year. The eSprinter is offered with a choice of three battery sizes – 56kWh, 81kWh and 113kWh – the largest of which also gives the large electric van a 248-mile range. By comparison, the current Master E-Tech is offered with a solitary 52kWh battery unit that can be charged at speeds of up to 22kW, whereas the eSprinter and E-Transit will reach 115kW charging speed if hooked up to the right DC rapid charger. 

The only other details Renault has shared so far are that the new Master will carry on the tradition of being produced at the brand’s Batilly plant in France and that it will be the first of a new generation of Renault vans that are “more efficient, 100% connected and innovative,” according to the French firm. A new mid-size Renault Trafic is the most likely follow-up, as the current model was launched in 2014 and had a mid-life facelift in 2021. 

The next-generation Renault Master will be unveiled at the commercial vehicle-focused Solutrans Motor Show being held in Lyon, France starting on 21 November 2023, and Renault has promised that there’s more information still to come. 

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