Renault confirmed its new 5 EV hatchback will hit the Champs Elysées in 2023 with the Renault 4 EV hot on its heels in 2025 but what will the revived 60-year-old icon look like?
New boss Luca de Meo confirmed the company’s innovative ‘Renaulution’ program a month ago, explaining it was “part of its business turnaround strategy” and that the brand would be reviving the successful R5 classic as a future electric vehicle, but recent developments have been heavily steered towards the R4 undergoing the same revitalisation.
Whilst there’s a sniff of Citroen around its styling, the new Renault 5 Prototype definitely takes ‘some’ of its inspiration from the early Clio and classic 5 – how much is another debate. As of yet, there has been nothing but educated guessing as to what dimensions and shape the R4 EV will assume with Autocar and others all throwing their rendering hats into the automotive ring.
The only thing that’s cast in stone is the dynamic duo will both slot into the growing small or ‘B’ car segment of the market with various other competitors and close friend, the electric Zoe which many think will be phased out.
With sales in excess of eight million units across more than 100 countries, there’s a strong argument the La Renault 4 should have blazed the ‘Renaulution‘ 2023 launch trail ahead of the R5. That said, France’s best-selling car from 1972 to 1986 was the R5 hitting 5.5 million spanning 14 years, so only time will tell if the reverse chronological strategy works as planned.
The ‘blue jeans’ Renault 4 is, without doubt, a car with a huge following that continues to embrace the ‘inexpensive and fun’ maxim, which could prove lucrative for the struggling French automaker if price-point and marketing are accurate – put simply, the punter is satisfied, the seller makes money.
Given Renault’s recent social media drive, promoting its quirky 4L as “the car from yesterday — is also the car for today, and why not the car for tomorrow?”, the brand looks to have already set the ‘new’ R4 EV wheels in motion.
Renault 4 EV Concept
Although both 4 and 5 will utilise the Common Module Family (CMF) B EV platform and share similar underpinnings, speculation as to what shape and design the new 4 will eventually take is anyone’s guess.
Of the many interpretations and latest renderings being circulated, the eldest of all dating back nearly 10 years by David Obendorfer, looks to be the pick of the bunch. Inspired by the iconic 4L, the idea titled ‘childhood impression’ came from a contest called ‘Renault 4 ever’, launched in 2011 by Renault in collaboration with the online magazine Designboom.
Until Renault teases us a little more, its a waiting game…
Images courtesy of David Obendorfer
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