Renault plans to bring back the Gordini badge starting in 2010 for a range of upgraded hot-hatch cars.
So, it's official: Renault will not be resurrecting the Alpine name any time soon. It has also confirmed that it will be bringing back another storied nameplate from its past. According to Stephen Norman, Renault's vice president of global marketing, the Gordini name will return in 2010 as the hallmark of a range of new sport-compacts designed to compete with MINI and Fiat's Abarth lineup.
The Gordini models, of which the first will be the 2010 Twingo Gordini, will slot into the lineup just below the Renaultsport performance line, and will offer a wide range of personalization features, as well as the familiar Gordini blue paint with white stripes and black alloy wheels. The Twingo Gordini will be joined in the lineup by Clio and Mégane Coupe versions.
Norman said that both Gordini and Gordini S models are likely. "The aim is to reintroduce Gordini along the lines of the MINI Cooper and Cooper S," he said, and suggested that a Gordini racing series was possible as well. With small-capacity TCE turbocharged engines, the Gordini would provide a small performance boost and allow the Renaultsport models to move upmarket and offer more uncompromising performance upgrades.
The Gordini was chosen for resurrection over Alpine primarily because of the financial downturn. Renault felt that an affordable range of cars with enhanced attitude would provide more brand recognition than a high-dollar, ultimate-performance car.