*The Thomson Reuters news agency ranked Renault among the world’s 100 most innovative companies in December 2012.
Our priorities in innovation
To develop appealing and broadly affordable technologies, we work in six priority areas:
- Innovative architecture. From the Renault 16 to Espace, Twingo and Twizy, Renault has marked history with its innovative architectural approach, which remains a core focus for the Group today.
- Electric vehicles and their ecosystem. In addition to our existing range of four full-electric vehicles, we are pursuing our efforts in the exploration of new battery technologies, extending range and reducing charging times and costs.
- Internal combustion-engine vehicles. We have set ourselves the objective of significantly reducing our CO2 emissions. The Group was the European leader on low CO2 emissions in 2013 – and the first automotive group to go below an average 116 g/km for its passenger cars sold. To go even further, we are preparing a vehicle that will consume less than 2 l/100 km.
- Travelling well-being. Our aim is to develop innovations that make car travel a pleasurable and serene experience. To that end, we have developed onboard multimedia systems and personalized cabin features. These initiatives are ideally demonstrated by the autonomous, connected vehicle, NEXT TWO.
- New services. We are working to meet the needs of our customers looking to find on board their vehicles the same possibilities as those offered by electronic and connected technologies – and smartphones in particular – including real-time information and harmonious use between the different worlds of drivers and passengers.
- And affordable costs. As part of a customer-centric approach, all our innovations are designed to be broadly affordable. This calls on all the ingeniousness of our teams, who endeavor to simplify and standardize the solutions that we develop.
Renault innovations: autonomous vehicles and onboard multimedia systems
EOLAB: the 1l/100 km prototype
Renault EOLAB is a prototype designed to explore the field of ultra-low fuel consumption. It consumes just 1l/100 km and emits 22g of CO2/km over an NEDC combined cycle*.
To achieve such low figures, engineers focused on three areas at the same time: lightweight construction, aerodynamics and “Z.E. Hybrid” technology. Showcasing Renault’s ability to innovate for the environment, EOLAB features a wide range of technological advances that will gradually be carried over to production vehicles.
* Homologated fuel consumption and emissions based on applicable regulations.
ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems)
Advanced Driver Assistance Systems fall into several categories depending on their purpose: to extend the driver’s field of vision, to warn of a loss of alertness, or to provide electronic co-driving functions, anti-collision systems or parking aids. Some of these systems are already available on our vehicles, including New Espace, to make life easier for drivers.
NEXT TWO, Renault’s autonomous vehicle
The NEXT TWO prototype is Renault’s take on the autonomous vehicle circa 2020. The prototype combines driverless operation and hyper connectivity to give time back to motorists while improving their safety.
NEXT TWO gives drivers the possibility of driverless operation in heavy traffic at a speed of up to 30 km/h. The hyper-connectivity of the vehicle frees up time for users, who can put it to good use via new services including videoconferencing, online purchases and tourist information.
The prototype’s park assist system detects parking spaces and parks automatically in adapted lots.
The twin-turbo system
The twin-turbo technology used on our engines provides power at high engine speeds while maintaining generous torque at low speeds.
The system consists in fitting engines with two turbos that work together in complementary fashion according to engine speed.
The twin-turbo system is an effective technology for significantly downsized engines, making them more economical and less polluting while maintaining strong performance levels.
Heating the air with electric resistors requires considerable wattage. But a heat pump system increases range while recovering calories from the air outside the vehicle, regardless of the air temperature.
The system features a cooling fluid that when transformed from gas to liquid generates heat used to warm the cabin.
Decoupled pedal: second-generation regenerative braking
Range is key to the success of electric vehicles. With ZOE, we have developed a number of innovations to make the electric city car an endurance champion, among them the decoupled pedal.
During braking, as with Fluence Z.E. and Kangoo Z.E., the electric motor recovers kinetic energy from the vehicle to produce electricity and power the battery. The counter-electromotive force generated also powers engine braking.
R-Link, our in-car, connected multimedia tablet
Inspired by smartphones and tablets, R-Link hooks your car up to the internet. Using R-Link’s touchscreen and voice commands, you can check your messages and download apps at the wheel in complete safety.
Using simplified ergonomics and a touchscreen, users can access a range of services, including TomTom navigation. They can also adjust the radio, connect their digital devices and download automotive-related apps at the R-Link Store.
Bass Reflex speakers, inspired by aeronautics
The nozzle-shaped Bass Reflex speakers, inspired by aeronautics technology, were co-developed with the CNRS research institute in Renault’s acoustics laboratories. The new technology makes your favorite music sound better than ever.