Paris Preview: Renault Nepta gull-wing cabriolet concept
Renault has pulled the wraps off its Paris stunner called the Nepta Concept – a four-seat convertible with a pair of motor-driven gull-wing doors. Gull-wing doors on a convertible? The doors pivot on an aluminum strip running down the center of the car's hood and a point immediately behind the rear seats, and they reveal the concept's 420-hp, 3.5-liter V6 hooked up to a seven-speed automatic when open.
The overall shape of the Nepta is very clean and simple, with an expressive face up front and tapered rear that hangs far out over the rear wheels. A nice anodized aluminum accent strip rings the lower part of the vehicle and nicely highlights the car's length.
The interior of the Nepta is a mix of classic styling cues and forward thinking that includes combination analog/digital gauges, a rotary gear shift and white leather "bench" seats, although we don't recommend forcing a fifth person to sit on that center hump.
Clearly the Nepta is a throw back concept for Renault that relies less on the draw of its design to attract attention than it does those trick doors. Again I ask, gull-wing doors on a convertible? No answer.
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Nepta - a prestige cabriolet for genuine driving pleasure
Renault is unveiling its new Nepta concept car, a four-seater cabriolet with fluid lines and a thoroughbred profile. The low-slung body shape is an expression of elegance and movement, while the spacious and comfortable interior has all the hallmarks of a top-end model. Nepta is a dynamic four-seater GT cabriolet, offering performance at the wheel that is worthy of a prestige sedan.
An attractive and dynamic cabriolet
This flowing, elegant four-seater cabriolet is an expression of Renault's vision of driving pleasure. The wave-shaped side panels give an impression of fluidity and highlight Nepta's long body shape; an effect that is further enhanced by the special anodic aluminium colour treatment on the lower part of the body shell, the mud flaps and the front and rear spoilers.
The front end is simple yet expressive. The LED headlights are made up of three assemblies: the daytime running lights, the dipped and main beam headlights and the steering lights. The headlights use a technology based on the reflection and propagation of light. The light beam from the main headlights is reflected by crystal-shaped transparent blocks that are electronically controlled for more precise lighting. The quantity and distribution of the light automatically adapts to the driving conditions. The rounded forms of the front wings are enhanced by the innovative boomerang-shaped indicator lights, positioned at the top of the lighting units.
The long and tapered rear end, which is punctuated by the crystals of the rear lights, adds a further sense of movement to Nepta. The overhang is longer at the rear than at the front, highlighting the vehicle's attractive proportions and flowing line. Nepta is an echo of the golden age of automotive styling, while remaining resolutely modern and innovative.
Nepta is a combination of the dream car and the love of fine mechanical engineering. The motor-driven gull wing doors open to reveal the interior and the engine, which is elegantly housed in its compartment. The centrally positioned door hinges are covered by polished aluminium panels representing a shooting star that runs the full length of the front bonnet, contributing to the impression of movement that the body shell creates.
The doors are fitted with electronic obstacle detectors and an anti-pinch device for greater safety.
A luxuriously welcoming and roomy interior
Nepta boasts all the features found in prestige models with discreet technology for greater on-board comfort.
The dashboard appears to be suspended, while the extensions of the windscreen illuminate the pedal unit and make for a bright and clear driving station. The rev counter and cone-shaped instruments are surrounded by leather trim. The design of the
instruments pays tribute to vehicles of the past, while the aluminium treatment adds a modern touch. The combination of analogue and digital displays is a further expression of classic cars and the modern era. The air conditioning controls located at each end of the dashboard can be independently adjusted by each occupant and combine advanced technology and ease of use.
The intuitive controls are inspired by the Touch Design approach. The centrally-mounted, rotary gear shift is easy and comfortable to use. The conveniently positioned multimedia information controls can be easily reached, while the stalk switches and control paddles mounted on the steering wheel are designed to match the shape of the driver's hands. The seats are fixed, but the steering wheel and the pedals can be adjusted by a motor-driven mechanism to match the driver's dimensions.
The dashboard features special storage compartments for glasses and other personal objects, while the central console also has a sliding cubby located between the rear seats. The red leather upholstery creates an impression of continuity between the vehicle interior and the engine compartment. Both bench seats are coated with leather decorated with printed patterns. The four comfortable seats are secured to the floor by aluminium struts reminiscent of sailing boats.
DVD screens with folding protective covers are installed in the upper sections of the backs of the front seats. The lower sections are decorated with elegant leather netting that is ideal for storing magazines.
The rear passengers are protected against turbulence by the transparent air deflectors positioned between the front and rear seats.
A powerplant designed for pleasure
Nepta's longitudinally mounted 3.5-liter V6 petrol engine is the embodiment of pleasure at the wheel. This 420hp powerplant takes just 4.9 seconds to reach 100kph from a standing start. Coupled to the seven-speed automatic gearbox with flick-shift controls mounted on the steering wheel, this direct injection petrol engine combines an outstanding drive with a significant reduction in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.
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