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Design Contest: Renault Design competition 'Imagine Espace in 2024'

Sat, 20 Nov 2004 The competition to 'Imagine Espace in 2024' has been won by Romain Gauvin, a fifth-year student at Strate Coll?ge in Paris. Renault Design organized the competition to coincide with the 20th anniversary of the Espace, inviting entries from students at its partner design schools in France (Strate Coll?ge) and Germany (Pforzheim University).

"My intention was to design a car that travels on the ground yet feels like it is soaring through the sky, like flying a hang-glider", explains Romain Gauvin. The 'suspended' cabin features illustrate this idea, with a pared-down dashboard and two rows of three seats, each on a central support. The hybrid engine takes up less room in the engine compartment to free space in the cabin. The seats are arranged 'lounge-style' around a low table, inviting passengers to relax and chat. The discreet low-slung dashboard allows for exceptional forward visibility through the sloping windscreen, giving a full view of the road. The streamlined profile and the shape of the rear end mirror aerodynamic flow to reinforce this sensation of flight. The side windows roll down below the feature line to give passengers the impression they are hovering above the road.

The aim of the competition was to inspire creative interpretations of the innovative Espace concept that has made a strong mark on the industry over the past 20 years. The first round of the competition in France comprised a creative brainstorming session for fourth- and fifth-year students at Strate Coll?ge. Their brief was to imagine the vehicle's interior and exterior design which they illustrated with drawings.

In mid-July, an initial selection was made by Renault design chief Patrick le Qu?ment and a panel of judges appointed by Renault Corporate Design. Four projects were shortlisted. The second stage was held on October 13 at Renault Corporate Design, where Patrick le Qu?ment and the panel chose the three finalists. The final was held on November 9 at the Atelier Renault where the three finalists' projects were presented to journalists. Patrick le Qu?ment concluded the day by announcing the winners. First place winner Romain Gauvin's prize included a graphic tablet and the loan of a Renault Modus. Second place went to recent graduate Thibault Doneux, and third place to fifth year student Gregory Vera.