Next-gen Russian off-roader to score 1.3-litre turbo four-cylinder, posting 'big' power compared with the current model.
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The next-generation Lada Niva off-roader – Russia's homegrown challenger to the Suzuki Jimny and Jeep Wrangler – could score a turbocharged engine, overseas reports suggest.

Overseas media – citing unnamed sources – reports the new Niva will offer a choice of two engines when it goes on sale in 2024, led by a 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol four-cylinder paired to a CVT automatic transmission driving all four wheels.

While outputs have yet to be confirmed, the engine develops 117kW of power and 270Nm of torque (albeit with mild-hybrid assistance, which the Lada will likely not feature) under the bonnet of the new Nissan Qashqai – a car with which the new Niva will share its CMF-B platform.

That's a big step up over the 61kW and 129Nm produced by the original 44-year-old Lada Niva (now known as the Legend, signifying its iconic status), or the 57kW and 125Nm developed by the newer (but still 22-year-old), GM-derived Lada Niva Travel.

Sitting below the 1.3-litre turbo mill in the overseas line-up will be a 1.8-litre naturally-aspirated four-cylinder petrol engine, mated to a six-speed manual gearbox.

Above and bottom: Speculative renders by Russian automotive website Kolesa. Top: Our impression of what a turbo Niva could (or should) look like.

First announced earlier in January 2020, the new Lada Niva off-roader will lob in Russia sometime in 2024, understood to be a replacement for the GM-based Niva Travel, and confirmed to ride on the CMF-B front-wheel-drive-based monocoque architecture shared with the Renault Clio city car and Nissan Juke small SUV.

A teaser image released alongside the model's announcement confirms it will look to its iconic, Soviet-era grandfather for styling inspiration, with a boxy shape, large LED headlights, NIVA script across the grille and indicators mounted above the main headlight units.

While the new turbocharged Niva might land in Russian showrooms by the middle of the decade, don't expect an Australian launch, given the Niva hasn't been sold here since before the turn of the millennium.