Renault has come up with a great 50th anniversary present for one of its best-selling cars of all time, the 5 small hatchback. No, it's not the Renault 5 EV, although that one remains on track to enter production at the end of 2023.
As fans await the modern-day Renault 5, Renault is presenting a tribute to the first-generation 5, which sold in more than 5 million copies between 1972 and 1984.
It's called the Renault 5 Diamant and it's a one-off electric restomod born from the collaboration between the automaker and French designer Pierre Gonalons. Meant to reinvent the classic Renault 5, the Diamant takes inspiration from decorative arts, particularly from fine jewelry, and that is easy to notice in the striking details present on the car.
Chief among them are the headlights and tailights, which feature gem-like faces, the smooth, monolithic bumpers and sills painted gold, and the wide Alpine wheels with white rims and a sun at their center—a favorite symbol of Pierre Gonalons.
Obviously, the Renault 5 Diamant's most visible feature is the daring color combining three layers of paint: golden pigments on a pink base, covered with frosted varnish. These are said to produce a wide variety of effects ranging from golden dashes in the sunshine to bluer tones in the dark.
Gallery: Renault 5 Diamant electric show car
Another interesting thing about the exterior is the clean look, achieved by removing the usual add-ons from their environment and magnify their shape and finish.
The same thing can be said about the minimalist interior of the Renault 5 Diamant, which retains only a handful of elements. For example, the door handles, window winders and shift lever are replaced with truncated spheres gilded with pale gold and stainless materials.
The most striking feature is clearly the weird steering wheel made of recycled marble, a material also used for the storage compartment. It may not look like it, but Renault describes the swirly steering wheel as "driver friendly." Other striking interior elements include the "furry" seats covered with fabric, horsehair fabric covering the dashboard and mohair wool carpet.
Unfortunately, the automaker does not provide any details about the all-electric powertrain, although the Renault Zoe's single-motor system would be a great fit. Renault does list some tech features such as a fingerprint scanner to unlock the doors, three round digital dials providing information on speed, battery charge and time, and three-position sequential shift lever. The dashboard also features a dedicated cradle in the middle to fit the owner's smartphone and use it to navigate and for infotainment purposes.
So, what does the future have in store for the Renault 5 Diamant? Well, the electric show car will remain a one-off and will be auctioned this autumn together with its NFT digital twin.