New Renault 5: price, specs, launch and on sale dates
Renault’s reborn Renault 5 will start from €25,000 in Europe, suggesting a circa-£30k price in the UK. It's due on sale in the summer of 2024. Here's everything you need to know...
We’ve been waiting with bated breath for the reveal of the road-going Renault 5 since the original heart-warming concept was unveiled at the beginning of 2021. We won’t have to wait much longer to see the production-ready model as it will be taking centre stage at the 2024 Geneva Motor Show in February, before going on sale in the summer of 2024.
At the unveiling of the 5’s even cheaper zero-emissions city car cousin, the reborn Renault Twingo, the firm’s CEO Luca de Meo announced the Renault 5 will start from €25,000 in Europe, where incentives for EVs are still available. Without those incentives, the all-electric 5 is likely to start from closer to £30,000 in the UK. Nevertheless, it’ll still be among the cheapest electric cars on sale, undercutting direct rivals like the new MINI Cooper and Peugeot E-208 that currently start from £30,000 and £32,400, respectively.
How will the new Renault 5 look?
The reborn Renault 5 represents a new era for the brand as Renault taps into its vast heritage to create what it hopes will become a future classic. In addition to the R5 Concept car, we've seen spy shots of the production model, images of body shells on the production line, validation prototypes and official teaser images of Renault's new all-electric baby.
Renault has kept the production model very close to the R5 Concept it revealed at the beginning of 2021. We can clearly see that it will share the concept’s chunky proportions and compact five-door body, with only subtle changes on the production model, such as the use of traditional front-door handles, standard wing mirrors and smaller wheels.
The latest teaser images reveal the front and rear lighting units with their LED graphics drawing direct inspiration from the concept car. The headlights get tiny French flag motifs in the corners while the vertically stacked tail lights forego a traditional lens cover. We can also see the new Renault 5 badge on the black strip connecting those rear lights and the novel external charging indicator light.
What do we know about the Renault 5's platform, batteries and range?
The new Renault 5 will be the first vehicle to launch based on the Renault-Nissan Alliance’s CMF-B EV platform, which has been specifically designed for smaller electric vehicles. This platform will also be used by the new Renault 4 – a retro-inspired compact SUV – the reborn Renault Twingo and the new Nissan Micra.
The brand is claiming up to 249 miles of range for the R5’s larger 52kWh battery pack, which will also likely come with a higher starting price. However Renault’s executive vice president for engineering, Gilles Le Borgne, confirmed to us that the entry-level model will be fitted with a 40kWh battery, which will offer a more moderate maximum range but will also be more affordable.
Charging is likely to be similar to that of the Megane E-Tech, which offers up to 130kW rapid-charging speeds - this should allow up to 124 miles of range to be added in around 30 minutes.
The new 5 will be the first all-electric Renault to feature vehicle-to-grid (V2G) compatibility, which will be able to intelligently feed electricity back into your home when electricity tariffs are high, or even into the grid itself if demand requires it. There’s no negative effect on battery life according to Renault, with the service being available through a home-installed wallbox terminal designed by Mobilize and accompanied by a special electricity contract. The V2G system will be available in 2024 in France and Germany, before arriving in the UK in 2025.
What kind of performance and drive can we expect?
Not only is the new Renault 5 intended to be budget-friendly, but Renault also wants it to be fun to drive, just like its ancestors. It will feature and feature high-spec, multi-link rear suspension as standard. We’ve already driven a Clio-bodied Renault 5 prototype ahead of the production car’s 2024 arrival and, although it was far from a finished product, this has helped give some insight into what this electric supermini will be like to drive.
Direct steering, a stable chassis and an impressive braking system were all highlights of the prototype 5’s performance. The motor also feels like it produces a plentiful amount of torque but, due to the traction control system still undergoing development, the car struggled to maintain tyre grip in the snowy test conditions.
The 5 is fitted with a brake-by-wire system, but this offered reasonable pedal feedback even though it is not directly connected to the brakes.A higher performance Alpine model based on the Alpine A290_ß concept car is set to follow the launch of the Renault-badged car.
Renault won’t fall into the same upsizing trap as many manufacturers. At the 2021 Munich Motor Show, Renault's Chief Technology Officer, Gilles Le Borgne told us: “This will be a small car at 3.92m. Today, most of the big cars – Clio included – are between 4m and 4.05m. We have decided to go to 3.9 to be agile and be fit for downtown in the city.”
What can we learn from the 2021 R5 Concept?
The Renault 5 prototype is the work of designer Gilles Vidal, who Renault headhunted from PSA following his efforts with the similarly retro Peugeot E-Legend concept from 2019.
“The design of the Renault 5 Prototype is based on the R5 – a cult model of our heritage. This prototype simply embodies modernity, a vehicle relevant to its time: urban, electric, attractive,” said Vidal, pointing to the prototype’s similar lines and flush surfacing.
Some styling elements from the original Renault 5 were repurposed to suit modern motoring. For instance, the bonnet air intake hides the charging hatch, and the fog lights in the lower front bumper are actually daytime running lights. These features have found their way onto the production-ready model.
No official interior shots of any Renault 5 have been revealed, but the cabin appears to be a minimalist environment, with only a transparent digital instrument panel visible on top of the dashboard.
What will the new Renault 5 mean for the Clio?
In 2021, Renault boss Luca De Meo explained the Renault 5’s positioning to Auto Express, saying: “The mission of that car goes beyond Renault. The mission of the project is to democratise electric technology in Europe – and you do that when you are able to make a competitive electric car in the range of €20,000 to €30,000, making money, obviously.
“It has to be a car that is in that range of price. We want to make it simple, accessible and essential. It needs to be an affordable product.”
But, by aiming the Renault 5 at the supermini segment, Renault has raised some questions about the future of the Clio. De Meo recognised the matter and hinted that it could soon become a car designed solely for markets where combustion engines are still allowed.
“I’m asking myself what to do with the next-generation Clio,” he said. “What kind of concept does it needs to be? Where are the markets? What kind of customer?
“I think we still have time and technical options. But if you think about the European perimeter, it will be difficult to make a small car with combustion engines profitable. You have to hybridise them with a lot of technology.
“In the A segment it’s already happening where the only possibility to compete and to be profitable is having an electric version. That’s why we have the Twingo and the Dacia Spring. And when the water goes up, the next one will be the B segment. Maybe there will be other markets where cars like a combustion-engined B-segment car will be successful, but not in Europe.”
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