PARIS: Renault has unveiled a new electric version of the classic 5 hatchback as the French company transforms its business model to focus on electrification.
Renault said the shape of the groovy new runabout was inspired by the original car “and draws inspiration to find the spirit of those glorious times without merely replicating it.”
Full technical details are sketchy but visually the electric R is close to the last, sportier versions of the R5 which was built as a petrol-engined runabout from 1972 to 1996. R5 production topped 5.5 million over a 14-year period, making it France's most popular car.
"The design of the Renault 5 Prototype is based on the R5, a cult model of our heritage. This prototype simply embodies modernity, a vehicle relevant to its time: urban, electric, attractive," Renault Design director Gilles Vidal said.
Renault did not say when the production version of the Concept 5 will go on sale. The prototype features wider rear wheel arches and a red stripe livery that nods to the R5 Turbo hot hatch. This hints at a future high-performance version of the new model.
The French firm has pledged to launch seven new EVs worldwide by 2025. Industry observers noted that when the electric R arrives, it could replace the highly successful Zoe EV as Renault's main compact electric hatch.