Renault is preparing a big surprise for us at the 2014 Paris Motor Show as the French manufacturer will unveil a new concept car. These words came from Renault design boss Laurens van den Acker, who spoke with Autocar, confirming the new vehicle.
Apparently, the new concept car is an answer to the challenge set by the French car manufacturer to offer a car that needs only 2 l/100 km of fuel. Van den Acker says that the new concept car is quite interesting and it is completely new, not based on an existing product.
The reason is that the current platforms are too heavy and they couldn’t obtain a low fuel consumption. Regarding the design, the concept car is actually a mixture of a hatchback, sports car and crossover. Say what? “I think there’s a little of all of those in there” said van den Acker.
The EOLAB prototype consumes only 1 liter of fuel per 100 km, achieved through refined aerodynamics, weight savings as well as Z.E. Hybrid technology.
Renault provided a very efficient wind-cheating shape, as helped by movable devices like an active spoiler and lateral vanes that work like ailerons. A weight saving program was also implemented, with the multi-material body shell making use of steel, aluminum and composites while the 4-kg roof just is made from magnesium.
Overall, the EOLAB tips the scales at just 400 kg. The weight saving program allowed the size and the cost of EOLAB’s chief assemblies -- engine, battery, wheels and brakes -- to be kept low. The cost savings permitted Renault to employ costlier materials.
Meanwhile, the Z.E. Hybrid technology – a new, compact and affordable hybrid power unit -- combines ultra-low fuel consumption with zero-emission mobility, especially for trips that don’t go beyond 60 km, with top speeds of up to 120 km/h. Renault expects the Z.E. Hybrid technology to be complementary to its zero-emission EV range.
The new EOLAB is part of the 'fuel consumption of 2 liters per 100 km for all' plan unveiled as a component of France's so-called New Industrial Plan. However, while the fuel consumption target set by the French government is at 2 liters per 100 km, EOLAB already does more at 1 liter per 100 km as this prototype is setting its sights on the future.
While designing EOLAB, Renault developed the necessary technologies to introduce a car that consumes just 2 liters/100km by 2020. To achieve this, the carmaker collaborated with French auto industry partners like Saint-Gobain (glass), Faurecia (seats), Michelin (tires) and Continental (brake system). Renault worked with major partners like Posco for magnesium components). Thanks to the specific know-how of these partners, the EOLAB prototype became a major success.
Even from the initial days of the EOLAB project, Renault's designers were already involved. These designers went beyond the design parameters to ensure that the prototype comes with perfect styling while making sure that its aerodynamics and weight are optimized.
EOLAB prototype features a sloping roof and slender rear end. Its overall design demonstrates Renault’s capability to make its concept look dream-like while still fulfilling its mission to deliver ultra-low fuel consumption.