Marking significant automotive anniversaries is difficult. Do too little and the manufacturer is accused of not properly celebrating the heritage; do too much and they're living in the past. Then there's the Renault AIR4, which has been built with TheArsenale as a finale of its 60th anniversary celebrations for the 4L. Described as an insight into how the Renault 4 might look in another six decades, this is a carbon fibre concept that looks a bit like the old car - but it can fly.
Yes, it's another car concept headed for the skies. The AIR4 has four two-blade propellers powered by lithium-polymer batteries, said to be enough for a horizontal top speed of 26 m/s. The AIR4 can apparently fly as high as 700m thanks to 380kg of vertical thrust, and as a landing velocity of 3m/s. Not simply another bizarre Renault concept, the input of TheArsenale and its 'Road to Air' division has ensured the AIR4 is more than just a pie-in-the-sky idea (sorry). Renault is even doing real-world trials.
Arnaud Belloni, Renault Brand Global Marketing Director, said: "This collaboration with TheArsenale was a natural fit. The flying show-car AIR4 is something unseen and a wink to how this icon could look like in another 60 years." The press release suggests this concept is "a symbol of independence and freedom", providing the intangible link to the original 4L, a car that ferried most of France around for over 30 years.
The AIR4 has been designed and built in the Sophia Antipolis technology park. Having made its virtual debut today, it will be exhibited at the Atelier Renault in Paris ahead of a 2022 tour that will see stops in Miami, New York and Macau. A mere flight of fancy? Who knows; we wouldn't bet against anything for the future of mobility right now!
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