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Geneva show: New extreme for Renault Megane

Dragonfly: Two-door Megane concept's cool door system won't be seen in showrooms.

Surprising Megane coupe concept reveals a curvy new style laungauge for Renault

7 Mar 2008

RENAULT surprised everyone by revealing one of the most interesting cars at the Geneva motor show this week – the Megane Coupe Concept, which the company says points to a “more fluid, sportier styling from Renault”.

The French car-maker confirmed that the show car “previews a compact coupe to be released at a later date” and we hear that the production version could appear as soon as the Paris motor show in October.

Coming hot on the heels of the Laguna Coupe Concept, which debuted at the Frankfurt motor show last September, the Megane Coupe Concept is another eye-catching design that underscores Renault design chief Patrick Le Quement’s standing in the automotive world.

Most distinctive is the car’s “dragonfly wings” – doors that open upwards and split into two elements – which of course will not make it to production.

Nevertheless, Renault clearly states that the concept car provides a foretaste of the forthcoming Megane Coupe.

“This show car emphatically showcases the evolution at Renault Design,” said Mr Le Quement at Geneva. “Its squatter proportions and powerful, energetic styling talk directly to the driver's senses they say ‘driving pleasure’.

“The spectacular, unprecedented door-opening kinematics add that little touch of magic which contributes to the dream factor associated with the automobile.” The Renault senior vice-president added that the car “symbolises Renault’s vision of what a genuine compact sports coupe should deliver, namely character and dynamism, two traits epitomised by the opening and closing movement of its spectacular doors”.

35 center imageMechanically, the Megane Coupe Concept sports a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine that develops 150kW of power at 5800rpm and 280Nm of torque at 2600rpm. It is mated to a six-speed manual gearbox and accelerates from 0-100km/h in 7.2 seconds while returning fuel consumption of 6.5L/100km.

It rides on 21-inch seven-spoke aluminium alloy satin-finish wheels equipped with Michelin Pilot Sport tyres (245/35) and Renault claims that the suspension and steering have been engineered for precise and responsive handling.

With an overall length of 4.51 metres, Renault says the vehicle features “a modern, dynamic silhouette with taut lines that seem to suggest perpetual movement, while its expressive frontal styling points to a truly dynamic personality.

“The juxtaposition of headlamp modules with aluminium-finish air-intakes also conveys an impression of fluidity and movement. The two rows of main and dipped beam lights sit on a crystal-like striated strip which fills the sidelight and daytime running light functions.” Both the headlights and fog lamps use LEDs while the tail-lights built into the squat rear end consist of four independent tubes that provide a distinctive signature in the day and the night.

The dragonfly doors open to reveal an interior that is designed to be redolent of the world of contemporary furniture, with asymmetric wafer-like and yet well-formed front seats that rise up from the silh black inserts that can hold small items.

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