Remember those cheeky Renault 5 headlights from the 70s? Well, Nicolas Jardin, the prototype’s exterior designer, has been spilling the beans on how he set about reinterpreting the look on his latest EV creation.
Renault has always prided themselves on their quirkiness and individuality; none more so than the original and mischievous looking original R5.
Just when Lou Reed was taking a walk on the wild side in 72, Les Aventures de Supercar was winking its cheeky eyes at unsuspecting French onlookers who were instantly besotted by the automotive sensation.
In 1976 the 5 Gordini was released in the UK and became known as one of the world’s first true hot hatches. Four years later in 1980, the 5 GT Turbo hit the scene with the second generation known as the Supercinq, not so ‘hot on its heels’ in 1984 sporting a revised look and built on a new platform.
If the modern Renault 5 Prototype is to be a credible throwback, Nicolas Jardin would need to replicate the elder sister and her funky outlook on life perfectly.
Has Nic managed to achieve his jovial objective? Without a doubt, the concept is innovative and emulates the original styling to some degree. Whether this translates successfully to a younger and more subtle audience is debatable. Those recognizable genes of its cult ancestor may need some introduction via tv advertising.
The work on the prototype was not a free subject. It was a work of reinterpretation of the R5 and its projection into the future, to make it a modern object.
Everything started from the lines, angles and radii of the elements of the front of the original R5. Then, during the sketches, the headlights became completely different in their proportions as well as in their design.
Their final version, very worked, very chiselled, evokes laughing, slightly wrinkled eyes. As for the daytime running lights, rectangular in shape at the bottom, reminiscent of the additional fog lamps of the time, they fit into a bumper in body colour, as they did originally.
Their crystal and three-dimensional treatment, their very precise cut evokes laser cutting and invokes the worlds of aerodynamics and aeronautics.
To be a worthy heir to the R5, the car had to become expressive and lively. We have succeeded in this feat with this prototype, a true object of modern design, embodying the Renault.
You won’t be able to get your hands on the R5 until 2023 so there’s still time for additional changes to its styling. The R4 will follow in 2025 with an even closer relationship to its narrower predecessor. Both are likely to embrace identical powertrains with the Zoe being phased out.
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