It looks like this past few weeks have been pretty busy around Renault’s design center. First, that strange-looking 2013 Twizy F1 Concept was unveiled at the end of April and today, at the 71st Monaco Grand Prix, the French company unveiled the Twin’Run - a concept that pays tribute to legendary R5 Turbo and Clio V6.
The concept made its first run at the Monaco Grand Prix with Carlos Tavares, Chief Operating Officer, at the wheel. Alongside it was a Clio V6 with F1 star Charles Pic at the wheel and a Maxi 5 Turbo driven by Jean Ragnotti.
While there is no chance for the Twin’Run to enter production, Renault did confirm that it previews the styling of the company’s future city car.
The unveiling of the new Twin’Run concept will be followed by a series of other dynamic demonstrations at various auto-centric events, like July’s Goodwood Festival of Speed .
Updated 05/24/2013: This review has been updated with the official details, images and specs.
Updated 05/27/2013: Renault unveiled a new video explaining the philosophy behind the new Twin-Run Concept. Enjoy!
Click past the jump to read more about the Twin’Run Concept.
The concept features a blue paint finish combined with a red stripe running the length of the body. It also includes two red bands on the roof and red insertions on the front end, the ultra-slim door mirrors and the tips of the rear spoiler. The concept is wearing a No. 5 on its doors in tribute to the R5 Turbo - a rally car that made history in the 1980s.
The concept is distinguished by four additional, extra-flat headlights with LED technology; a diamond-dominated front end; and an aerodynamic kit that makes it ready for any racetrack in the world.
|Length||3,680 mm (144.9 inches)|
|Width||1,750 mm (68.9 inches)|
|Height||1,493 mm (58.8 inches)|
|Front track||1,522 mm (59.9 inches)|
|Rear track||1,497 mm (58.9 inches)|
|Fuel tank||40 liters (10.6 gallons)|
|Unladen weight||950 kg (2,094.4 pounds)|
The interior was also prepared specially for a race car, as it comes with: SPARCO seats fitted with safety harnesses; a motorsports steering wheel; a sequential gear lever with a high-mounted layout for fast gear changes; aluminum pedals; and an instrument cluster specially designed for a sports vehicle.
For the door panels and dashboard, Renault used a combination of black and red "Alcantara effect" suede. The padded bucket seats are upholstered in three shades of Alcantara and carry the “Twin’Run” signature.
The concept is also equipped with a 5.5-inch LCD screen that shows the vehicle speed, gear speed and engine speed, as well as fuel pressure, clutch pressure and oil pressure.
Under the hood of the tiny Twin’Run, Renault placed a 3.5-liter V-6 engine that delivers a total of 320 horsepower at 6,800 rpm and 280 pound-feet of torque at 4,850 rpm. The engine is mated to a SADEV six-speed sequential gearbox with a limited-slip differential. The concept sprints from 0 to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds and up to a top speed of 155 mph.
Engine Specifications :
|Engine Type||Nissan VQ35 from the Renault-Nissan Alliance|
|Engine positioning||Mid-engine longitudinally mounted|
|Engine Configuration||3,498 cc 24-valve V-6|
|Max power||320 horsepower at 6,800 rpm|
|Max torque||380 Nm (280 lb-ft) at 4,850 rpm|
|Max engine speed||7,500 rpm|
|Transmission Type||Six-speed sequential gearbox|
|Traction Control||Limited slip differential|
|Clutch||184 mm (7.24-inch) twin-metallic-disc clutch|
|0 to 100 km/h (62 mph)||4.5 seconds|
|Top speed||155 mph|
Suspensions and brakes
The new Twin’Run concept was built on a multi-tube high-performance steel chassis derived from aeronautics and developed entirely by Tork Engineering. Also, both front and rear axles are fitted with double-wishbone suspension with independent pivots.
The concept sits on 18-inch alloy wheels wrapped in Michelin tires.
- Steel multi-tube 25CD4S
- Double wishbone suspension at front and rear
- OHLINS two-way spring-damper combinations, front and rear
- Front brakes, vented discs 356-by-32 mm (14.01-by-1.26-inch) discs and six-piston calipers
- Rear brakes, vented discs 328-by-30 mm (12.91-by-1.18-inch) discs and four-piston calipers
Wheels and tires:
- Front: 7.5-by- 18-inch alloy wheels and Michelin tires 205/40R18
- Rear: 8.5-by-18-inch alloy wheels and Michelin tires 245/35R18
When can I drive one?
Most likely never, but Renault will use design elements from Twin’Run in a future city car.
The Twin’Run has been developed just to show what Renault can really do, so it makes pretty much no sense talking about competitors for it. Still, if you want to take a look of another city car out there, we can find a few alternatives.
The i10 is just preparing to enter a new generation. The model has been caught testing many times in the past few months and it is expect to debut in September 2013 at the Frankfurt Motor Show.
The new i10 will feature a new design language with a bigger grille, a clearer side profile and a more sloped roof. Under the hood, we expect to see a new lineup of engines that are smaller and more fuel efficient.
Gallery Hyundai i10
Up! is one of the latest and coolest city cars to hit the market. It comes with a number of engine options, including: a new 1.0-liter three-cylinder gas engine that produces an output of either 60 or 75 horsepower and a natural-gas-powered engine that delivers 68 horsepower.
Even though it’s relatively new, the Up! won the heart of many European clients, mainly because of its funky look and the relatively low price of £7,995 ($12,500).
Gallery Volkswagen Up!
It would have been cool to see such a powerful and tiny car put into production, but we’ll need to be realistic and understand it will likely never happen. Still, for Renault it was a nice design exercise!
- Quite powerful
- Looks cool
- We love that blue paint
- Just a concept
Gallery Renault Twin'Run Concept
Twin’Run: a passionate concept car going back to its roots
Twin’Run drove its first laps today in front of spectators at the Monaco Grand Prix weekend. Monaco, with its legendary track, is the ideal theatre for the concept car’s debut. Twin’Run is a performance car through and through and cultivates the Renault brand’s passion for racing, picking up where the famous R5 Turbo and Clio V6 left off.
The public at Monaco got to see the three racers in action in a pursuit race organised to celebrate Renault’s motorsport history. Twin’Run led the way with Carlos Tavares, Chief Operating Officer, at the wheel, tailed by a Clio V6 driven by F1 star Charles Pic and a Maxi 5 Turbo with its celebrated driver, Jean Ragnotti, at the helm.
Twin’Run: compact, potent and playful!
Twin’Run ties in perfectly with the series of concept cars illustrating Renault’s design strategy. The diamond-dominated front end underlines Renault’s new styling approach through its new brand identity. Like Twin’Z, Twin’Run gets blue paint in reference to the “Play” petal of the fifth stage in the French marque’s design strategy. Twin’Run’s stomping ground is the world of motorsport.
“Twin’Run is a cocktail of energy, passion and athleticism, rekindling the memory of emblematic Renault racing cars,” says Laurens van den Acker, Senior Vice President, Corporate Design at the Renault group. “Following its twin, Twin’Z, a stylish urban concept car, Twin’Run shows that personalisation is a core strategy at Renault.”
Twin’Run, has a compact, ultra-dynamic body. The wheels set in the far corners, minimal overhang and high waistline underscore the dynamic feel and promise a great drive.
Blue and red:
The blue paint finish on Twin’Run features taut, graphically drawn lines with emphatic shoulders enhanced by touches of red on the strip running all the way along the body, as well as two red bands on the roof. Red also figures at the front, where it underlines the grille and air intakes, and on the ultra-slim door mirrors and the tips of the rear airfoil. A red surround emphasises the circumference of the black and white wheels.
Homage to a prestigious forerunner
The “5” on the doors refers to the R5 Turbo, the emblematic 1980s rally car.
A host of details pay homage to this illustrious forerunner, including the design of the headlights and the generous haunches at the back. The four additional, extra-flat headlights with LED technology are a modern-day take on the light racks used in night rally specials. The fully customisable light sequences are controlled by an in-car system, the development of which was a real challenge as the designers had to provide a powerful light source in a lamp measuring just 25 mm.
“Twin’Run embodies the mad genius Renault has been known for over the decades, to the delight of motor sports enthusiasts. No one has forgotten the R5 Turbo and the Clio V6. Twin’Run is the true heir of those racing cars that had so much appeal,” says Axel Breun, Head of Concept Car Design.
Twin’Run: a real racing car
Twin’Run was developed with the assistance of Tork Engineering / Poclain Vehicules, a French firm specialised in the preparation of chassis for competition. The concept car is a real racing car that has benefited from such competition expertise. The composite material bodywork covers a multi-tube steel chassis powered by a mid-engine engine derived from Mégane Trophy.
A V6 engine for competition
Twin’Run is fitted with the V4Y engine from the Renault-Nissan Alliance, which is used on the road for Laguna, Espace and Latitude, as well as in competition with the Mégane Trophy racer. Mounted longitudinally ahead of the rear axle centreline, the V6 3,498cc powerplant delivers 320hp at 6,800 rpm and torque of 380Nm at 4,850 rpm. The engine is full-bodied and generous from low revs, delivering linear acceleration and providing excellent traction around bends and in acceleration. Unsurprisingly, it also makes a great noise.
The V6 is mated to a SADEV six-speed sequential gearbox with limited slip differential, enhancing Twin’Run stability and traction in curves. The twin clutch is also borrowed directly from competition.
The air intake vents are positioned at the level of the rear wheel arches. Air extractors in the rear quarter lights help keep the engine cool. The cooling system has received special treatment with polished aluminum pipes set visibly into the cabin floor. The engine is separated from the driving position by a plexiglass panel.
The concept car is well balanced with a 43/57 weight distribution, to ensure it remained so given the mid-engine architecture, various components were positioned under the bonnet, including include the fuel tank, radiator and the hydraulic system.
The bodywork in a glass-polyester composite has also benefited from racing expertise. This includes carbonfibre for the front blade, roof, rear vent and wheelarches. Carbon fibre technology combines aesthetics and efficiency, while keeping costs down.
Design intelligence informed by the world of motorsport
The design process was been led by a continuous effort to avoid reinvention with a common sense approach. The chassis has been made of a combination of track-proven elements, allowing to develop quickly a very efficient racing car.
The two-box architecture of Twin’Run creates lift at high speeds. The aerodynamics have received special attention with a vent channelling the air flow under the car and a fixed airfoil for enhanced aerodynamic support at high speeds.
A racing chassis
Twin’Run sits on a multi-tube high-performance steel chassis derived from aeronautics and used in competition. The chassis was developed entirely by Tork Engineering. The ground link is provided by front and rear axles fitted with double-wishbone suspension with independent pivots. The four pivots, in solid aeronautical quality aluminum, deliver high performance on the track. For filtering and body stability, Twin’Run is fitted with OHLINS spring shock absorbers at the front and rear.
The axles have an anti-roll bar with a diameter of 22 mm at the front and 25 mm at the rear. Roll is perfectly controlled for agility and responsiveness.
The aluminum wheel covers feature a special hub with a central bolt that can be dismounted in three parts and fit 18” Michelin tyres.
Jean Ragnotti: an expert view
Rally champion Jean Ragnotti was involved in the final tuning of the chassis system of Twin’Run. He shared his impressions with us while taking a look back at the R5.
“Following this first drive, I’d say that this is a sound car with a strong pedigree. It’s easy to control. You can feel straight away that it’s a sports car. In terms of balance and ride, it brings the R5 Turbo to mind to some extent.
The gearbox is smooth and you’ve got powerful brakes. Excellent traction with a responsive engine delivering full power at all revs, rounder and with more torque than the R5 Turbo, making it particularly efficient and easy to drive, unlike the R5, which required more technique.
It’s definitely an efficient car with surprisingly good vertical comfort, including in zones of high compression where we’re still a long way from the travel stops. All we need to sharpen our attacking edge a bit more are racing tyres. There’s a slight roll but no understeer. A gradual performance, no surprises, taking corners easily. This concept car is a worthy heir to the Maxi 5 Turbo.”
Jean Ragnotti is widely recognised as the celebrated rally driver of the R5 Turbo in the 80s. He won three famous World Rally Championship races driving the high-performance Renault: Monte Carlo in 1981, as well as the 1982 and 1985 Tour de Corse races. He still has the opportunity to drive the R5 Turbo and Maxi 5 Turbo for exhibition sessions all over Europe.
A cabin dedicated to performance
Twin’Run has the cabin of a performance car, underlined by the tubular chassis and SPARCO seats fitted with safety harnesses. Nevertheless, the emphasis placed on interior design extends well beyond anything normally seen in the world of motorsports. The door panels and dashboard are upholstered in black and red “alcantara effect” suede. The padded bucket seats, upholstered in three shades of alcantara and carrying the Twin’Run signature, allude to the “French touch” of this one-off concept car.
The driver gains a motorsports steering wheel and sequential gear lever with a high-mounted layout for fast gear changes. The joint welded handbrake is positioned on the same level as the gear lever for demonstration figures such as a 360° rotation.
Under the driver’s feet, the aluminum pedal assembly is pure motorsport. Designed for easy heel-toe moves, it has been tried and tested on many track vehicles (Lodgy Andros / Duster No Limit).
Positioned in a white lacquer console, the instrument cluster is dedicated first and foremost to driving, as on any sports vehicle.
Twin’Run features a 5.5 inch LCD screen positioned just behind the steering wheel. The red and blue multi-page display shows the vehicle speed, gear speed and engine speed, as well as fuel pressure, clutch pressure and oil pressure. Two red pressure gauges with centrally positioned needles show the oil temperature and water temperature, a last nod to the R5 Turbo.