The Initiale Paris is a 4.85 meters long tourer focused on offering an exclusive traveling experience and created to showcase the future direction for the brand’s production models, both in terms of design and technology.
Expressing the concept of Wisdom in the company’s “life cycle” design strategy, The Initiale Paris also shows a distinctive look that underlines the importance of this project for the brand’s image.
The proportions feature a relatively dynamic stance, with an arched roofline and muscular flanks that put the accent on the large 22-inch wheels.
The premium character is enhanced by the large, chromed front grille and by the contour of the side windows, based on a graphic shape inspired by a feather.
The exterior is also characterized by a number of “textured” elements, showcasing a motif made of an assembly of diamond shapes. These include the lower intake at the front, the wheels, the side sills and the rear pillars.
An additional distinctive element is procided by the panoramic plexiglass roof, that features a graphic representation of a map of Paris milled in aluminum.
The interior is focused on comfort and takes inspiration from private jet cabins, featuring single seats for the first two rows.
The slender, floating center console flows seamlessly from the dashboard to the center tunnel with no vertical link with the floor, while blue light guides offer a relax yet high-tech atmosphere and enhance the diamond pattern on the floor, which is made of matt wood with high-tech aluminum.
The drivetrain features a compact dCi 130 engine equipped with a twin-turbo system and coupled with a six-speed Efficient Dual Clutch automatic transmission with Shift-by-Wire control.
Below we report selected design details from the official press release.
“Life Cycle” design strategy
With the Initiale Paris Renault has unveiled the sixth and final concept car in its “Life Cycle” strategy, illustrated by daisy “petals”. The concept represented by the show car is “Wisdom”, expressing open-mindedness and the ability to enjoy life to the full by focusing on feelings and pleasure.
Renault’s “life cycle” design strategy encompasses the experiences of its customers as they fall in love, discover the world, found a family, work, play, and attain wisdom. The strategy is based on an emotional styling language that is simple, sensual and warm in equal parts.
- Love: Life starts when you fall in love, a founding step expressed by DeZir.
- Explore: Then comes the moment to explore the world as a couple with the Captur crossover.
- Family: After which, you found a family, with R-Space, embodying the minivan and family car.
- Work: Life is all about professional activity, with the Frendzy light commercial vehicle, and the associated moments of leisure.
- Play: Then there are the good times and fun, in the shape of the Twin’Z and Twin’Run concept cars.
- Wisdom: At some point, everyone aspires to serenity, a time when they can take full advantage of life. The Initiale Paris concept car, making its debut at Frankfurt, illustrates open-mindedness and the pleasures and sensations associated with a premium vehicle.
Axel Breun, Concept and Show Car Design Director, explains “By making direct links between concept and production cars, Renault is delivering on the promise to design simple, sensual and warm vehicles with emotional appeal.”
Initiale Paris designer François Leboine comments: “The Initiale Paris concept car is a concentrate of the very best of Renault, caressing the senses through style and innovation.”
Initiale Paris is 4.85 m long and features a crossover body style that aims at combining the features of a sedan, through its emphatic grille and muscular shoulders, the character of an SUV, with large 22-inch wheels and sculptured wings, and the light and space of a minivan, through a generous glazed surface and innovative roof that plays withlight.
The flowing and contemporary body styling of the Initiale Paris concept car is inspired by the worlds of architecture and aeronautics, two fields in which the generally mutually-exclusive qualities of robustness and lightness come together.
The shape of the side windows evokes that of a feather. The rear quarterlight, shaped like an aircraft tail fin, houses innovative, motorized aerodynamic screens that deploy like the flaps of a tail fin with a sophisticated movement heightening the emotional content of the styling.
The harmony between robustness and lightness is showcased further by the repetition of a strong graphic design on several parts of the vehicle. The motif, made out of an assembly of diamond shapes, shares the spirit and design of a bee hive. It features on the exterior of the grille, the wheels, and the sides of the vehicle. Linking exterior and interior, it also figures on the floor section where the rear-hinged doors open.
The structural composition brings to mind the frame of an aeroplane, but also gives a nod to the Grand Palais and the Eiffel Tower, emblematic Parisian monuments, the capital of French-style elegance.
The most formal homage to Paris is made by the concept car’s highly original aluminum and plexiglass roof. Milled directly out of the main body, it depicts a map of Paris – solid and transparent – showing the city’s districts and arteries and the River Seine.
The technical feat, with its spectacular aesthetic result, gives meaning to the new “Initiale Paris” signature in particular and to Renault in general, since it was on the banks of the Seine that Renault’s industrial adventure began.
The designers took their inspiration from aeronautics and ultra-high-end contemporary outdoor furniture – worlds featuring elegant and refined shapes along with a great deal of vitality, and at the same time evoking warmth, light and space.
Chrome detailing is satin finished, while the matt-finish walnut wood is assembled using slim blades for a more refined air. The centre console has a similar design, shifting imperceptibly from natural wood to gloss black.
The concept car body is cloaked in an “Amethyst” color that shifts from deep metallic black to luminous plum violet as the light and viewpoint change. The body paint plays with shifting reflections much as a jewelry setting showcases the gem it holds. The letter “I” for Initiale Paris adorns the vehicle sides and wheels.
The full-LED lights give the Initiale Paris concept car a strong light signature. At the front, the daytime running lights enclose each headlamp in parentheses. A built-in mechanism causes an eyelid-like “blink” in the light.
At the rear, the lights are harmoniously positioned in relation to the horizontal and vertical lines of the car through their size and artful proportions. Rearward vision is ensured by ultra-slim, profiled cameras that serve as exterior mirrors. Each exterior detail evokes and fosters movement.
Motorists enter the car via rear-hinged doors with the help of a motorized running board – in a further nod to aeronautics.
The focus on a premium jet-style inspired traveling experience is underlined by the armchair seats in the first two rows.
Together with the profiled gearstick, the light guides covering the entire cabin, and the shapes echoing the tail-fin motif employed on the exterior.
Attached to the central tunnel with no vertical link with the floor, they seem to float in the midst of the cabin. The levitating effect is heightened by the discreet joint between seat back and seat base that lets the light pass through.
The floor blends matt wood with high-tech aluminum set in a regular pattern. The marquetry lends a distinct sense of relief through the wave-like movement that softly washes across its surface.
The cockpit has uncluttered instruments and a centre console that seems to float above the cabin floor. Free of side support, the console fits seamlessly into the cabin like a bridge linking the central tunnel and the dashboard.
The console houses two screens displaying videos and information on points of interest in the surrounding area. The screens are built into the surface and curve of the console, merging as one with the matt wood veneer.
The third row of the cabin is home to an original bench made of independent mobile blades. The blades compose a poetic expression of the modular design expected of this type of vehicle. Their respective positions open up entirely new in use.
The seat back can be partly or totally folded down, while the bench can form a single whole with an armrest separating the passengers. For visual pleasure rather than pure practicality, the blades can be set in a range of positions to suggest different kinds of movement, that of a wave, for example.
The seats also feature variations in light and the corresponding mood depending oin the time of the day: by day, natural light from above is diffused through the roof prism, creating an ever-changing play of light and shadow. At night, the soft light sources bathe all occupants in a soothing nocturnal ambience. A succession of light guides above the instrument cluster lights up and switches off in step with the forward movement of the car.
Frech Style luxury inspiration
The interior was penned by Korean designer Choung-Sun Oh and Spanish Miguel Ángel Iranzo Sánchez, responsible for the colors and materials.
Their visions of France and Paris, and of luxury goods and cars, provide an original insight into the work carried out on the concept car.
Choung-Sun Oh explains: “For me, Paris has a lot of interesting oppositions of style. In architecture, for example, the city has always built ultra- modern buildings and monuments side by side with traditional constructions. And everything makes a harmonious fit. With Initiale Paris, I sought to create and balance out this type of contrast.”
Miguel Angel Iranzo Sánchez comments “France places great emphasis on all things human. It is a multi-cultural country, a nation of unity. Focusing on the human side of a premium vehicle was unusual and exciting. Initiale Paris has six seats. All the occupants are pampered. Passengers dialogue and share in complete peace of mind as they travel onwards. To my mind, that is a real luxury.”
New approach to acoustics
To heighten travelling pleasure through music and sound, acoustics were thoroughly thought out on Initiale Paris. The concept car brings all occupants a totally immersive and shared experience in this respect.
Thr Initiale Paris has a special sound signature that sets the tone for a premium experience and delivers on the “Initiale Paris” promise. Renault called on composer and sound designer Andrea Cera to create the signature, as part of the collaborative effort between the Group and France’s acoustic and music research and coordination institute, IRCAM, which previously developed the pedestrian warning sounds for ZOE.
Renault also partnered with BOSE to design a custom-engineered audio system featuring the new Surround Sound®, an enveloping and rich audio experience close to that of a live concert.