The Rebooted Renault 5 Is Retro Futurism Done Perfectly

Mack Hogan
·2 min read
Photo credit: Renault
Photo credit: Renault

From Road & Track

The Renault 5 Turbo 2 is one of the most iconic hot hatches ever made, a mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive monster packed into the sensible shape of what was then France's best-selling car. The 5 as a whole is etched into that country's conscience as the little hatchback that dominated its streets for decades. As the company looks toward an electrified future, it's trying to recapture the success and iconic era of the original with a new, stunning 5 Prototype.

Photo credit: Renault
Photo credit: Renault

The new 5 Prototype is a two-door, all-electric compact hatchback with a design deeply rooted in the boxy vision of the first- and second-generation 5s. It has the aggression and bulging flares of the Turbo, but with modern accents like sleek LED lights and "RENAULT" tattooed across the front and rear in lights. The requisite slanted back, squat proportions, and vertical rear lights are all here, as are modern flares like a rectangular battery indicator and charge port integrated into the hood.

Photo credit: Renault
Photo credit: Renault

As Top Gear notes, this prototype is more than just idle teasing. Renault plans to bring this to market by 2025, riding on a smaller version of the same electric platform set to underpin the electric Megane. We don't have any specs on the 5, but Top Gear points out that the Megane EV uses a 217 hp electric motor that drives the front wheels. That's fine for the base model, but hopefully Renault is wild enough to do a more potent, rear-wheel-drive version. After all, it's easier to change the drive wheels in an EV.

Photo credit: Renault
Photo credit: Renault

The project underscores Renault's new commitment to bring a slate of electrified and hydrogen vehicles to market by 2025, leading to what it claims will be the greenest product mix in Europe. Combined with a new push toward more technology and connected services, this so-called "Nouvelle Vague" is supposed to transform Renault into a more modern, sustainable, and agile brand. The 5, prototyped in just the last six months after a brand-wide direction change, is set to be the defining face of Renault's rebirth. Based on this one stunning design, the future's looking good.

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