Often, concepts as flashy as the Renault DeZir
disappear shortly after their auto-show appearances. But the DeZir
, a sports coupe concept debuted at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, is not only headed for production, it's going to help anchor a new brand.Autocar
reported last week that Renault plans to spin its Renaultsport
division into its own sub-brand. And the DeZir
will be the first of two or three independent models that it offers.
Interestingly, the production DeZir
is likely to be introduced as a convertible. It is also likely to lose the electric powertrain
of the concept, in favor of a more practical gas or diesel powertrain
. It is likely to remain a mid-engined, rear-driven coupe, though.
In its 2010 Paris iteration, the DeZir
was powered by a 110 kW electric motor connected to a 24 kWh lithium-ion battery. Though modest in size, the motor was able to provide a five-second 0-to-62 mph time thanks to a 1,830-lb curb weight. Renault planted the DeZir on a lightweight, tubular-steel frame and used a Kevlar body to keep weight as low as possible.
While exotic materials worked in the concept, they'll likely be removed for less expensive parts in production. But with a more potent gas or diesel engine, the DeZir won't need to rely so heavily on a tiny curb weight to deliver sporty performance.
In addition to inspiring its own production model, the DeZir introduced new design language--language that Renault says is underpinned by the concepts of "
simple, sensuous and warm". The language will be integrated across Renault's line as it introduces future models.
As for the Renaultsport
brand, it will continue to produce limited-edition, high-performance versions of Renault vehicles in addition to offering its own low-volume models.