Design boss confirms "experimental" super-frugal concept car, which will rival Peugeot's 2008 Hybrid Air, for October show
Darren Moss
29 August 2014

Renault will present a new “experimental engineering” concept car at the Paris motor show in October, Autocar has learned.

Speaking at the Moscow motor show, Renault design boss Laurens van den Acker confirmed the new concept is Renault’s answer to a challenge set by the French government, to put a car capable of returning 141mpg into production by 2020.

“We’ve come up with a really interesting concept,” he said.

Van den Acker also confirmed the new car won’t be a modified version of an existing Renault product, saying: “It doesn’t have an existing platform, because the existing platform would be too heavy. To be able to get to these numbers you need a dramatic weight reduction and a dramatic aerodynamic improvement.” 

The design chief wouldn’t be drawn on what form the new concept will take, only saying there would be a mixture of traditional hatchback, sports car and crossover styling traits: “I think there’s a little of all of those in there,” he said.

Renault isn’t the first French firm to answer the challenge. Earlier this year Autocar drove the near production-ready version of Peugeot’s 2008 Hybrid Air concept, which is powered by a 1.2-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine with 81bhp in conjunction with a pair of hydraulic pumps, meaning total power is rated at 112bhp. 

In total, Peugeot's car is capable of returning an estimated 106mpg – impressive, but still short of the French government’s 141mpg target.

Get the latest car news, reviews and galleries from Autocar direct to your inbox every week. Enter your email address below:

Our Verdict

Peugeot 2008

Can the Peugeot 2008 crossover make more of a mark than the estate it replaces?

Join the debate

Comments
2

29 August 2014
Relatively easy to achieve this goal with a million pound prototype that doesn't have to work reliably, meet legislation or show a profit. But I fear that there's not much chance of a production model appearing any time soon. I think Reault's approach of building something very light and slippery is a good one though, especially if it can be kept simple too.

29 August 2014
Renault/Nissan's early and forceful foray into electric cars caught me by surprise. I am all for the development of alternative fuels but I can't help thinking that hybrid technology is a more feasible powertrain for the time being and has a far wider appeal than pure electric cars.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Lexus LC500
    Car review
    20 October 2017
    Futuristic Lexus LC coupé mixes the latest technology with an old-school atmospheric V8
  • Maserati Levante S GranSport
    First Drive
    20 October 2017
    Get ready to trade in your diesels: Maserati’s luxury SUV finally gets the engine it’s always needed
  • Jaguar XF Sportbrake TDV6
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The handsome Jaguar XF Sportbrake exhibits all the hallmarks that makes the saloon great, and with the silky smooth diesel V6 makes it a compelling choice
  • Volkswagen T-Roc TDI
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    Volkswagen's new compact crossover has the looks, the engineering and the build quality to be a resounding success, but not with this diesel engine
  • BMW M550i
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The all-paw M550i is a fast, effortless mile-muncher, but there's a reason why it won't be sold in the UK