[UPDATE] Additional high-resolution spy shots have been added at the beginning of the gallery.
What's old is new again as Renault is reviving the 5 after discontinuing the supermini back in 1996. It'll be returning next year with an electric twist as the small hatchback won't be offered with combustion engines. The little EV is being developed to supersede the Zoe, and for the first time, it has been spied hiding its own production-ready panels. Previously, car paparazzi had spotted a test mule using a modified, high-riding Clio body.
Although it's fully camouflaged, the prototype already looks familiar since it doesn't appear to stray away too far from the concept. It appears to have the final lights as well, while those steelies will make way for more stylish alloys likely with aero panels since these are becoming common on EVs and even some ICE cars. Compared to the namesake showcar, it has gained larger side mirrors and a shark fin antenna.
2024 Renault 5 prototype with production body spy photos
Another notable change is at the front where Renault has installed a lower air intake incorporating the radar sensor. Provided the disguise isn't playing tricks on us, the prototype appears to have conventional front door handles. As a refresher, the concept car unveiled in January 2021 had a sleeker side profile with flush door handles at the front. Much like the Zoe and Clio, the revived 5 has Alfa Romeo-styled "hidden" rear door handles mounted near the C-pillar.
At the back, cutouts in the corners of the bumper give the false impression of exhaust tips but those openings could be for red reflectors. The rear glass seems unusually small, although we could be deceived by the bulky camo. Compared to the concept, the production-ready Renault 5 will have a rear wiper. Those taillights are likely substantially larger than what we're allowed to see considering the concept had prominent vertical lights. There was also an LED light bar on the tailgate with an illuminated diamond logo incorporating a "5."
Since the prototype was caught from afar, spies couldn’t peek inside. However, it appears the small EV has a tablet-like infotainment touchscreen sticking out from the dashboard along with a fully digital rectangular driver’s display. Renault never revealed the concept’s cabin, so this is (kind of) our first look. The resurrected 5 won’t be an all-new car since it will borrow as much as 70 percent of components from the Clio and Captur by utilizing the same CMF-B platform adapted for EV duties.
2021 Renault 5 EV concept
Doing so will allow the French brand to slash manufacturing costs by 30 percent compared to the Zoe. The new 5 is getting four large battery modules arranged in a single layer compared to Zoe's 12 smaller modules to remove 15 kg (33 lbs). The lighter battery pack will not only boast higher energy density but also improve underbody rigidity to reduce NVH levels.
In the age of cost-cutting, you'll be pleasantly surprised to hear this little EV will have a multi-link rear suspension. In addition, Renault's performance arm Alpine plans a hot hatch version slated to come out later in 2024. The spicy derivative was previewed a couple of months ago by the A290_β concept.