marco van leeuwen: renault 4 remake renault 4 ever shortlisted entry
marco van leeuwen: renault 4 remake   renault 4 ever shortlisted entry
aug 01, 2011

marco van leeuwen: renault 4 remake renault 4 ever shortlisted entry

‘renault 4 remake’ by marco van leeuwen



dutch designer marco van leeuwen has created ‘renault 4 remake’, a concept car which maintains the look of the original, but permits user customization to increase utility. the project is one of 50 shortlisted from over 3200 submissions from 92 countries in designboom’s recent RENAULT 4 EVER competition, which asked participants to redesign the renault 4 with an eye towards historical lineage, contemporary aesthetics, and sustainable design.

to respect but recreate the iconic style, ‘renault 4 remake’ rearranges the old model’s lines with a subtle approach: the body’s dynamic shape reduces air resistance, and its tailgate surface is slightly offset, evidenced in the bonnet and rear wheel housing. along with LED lighting, the vehicle also features environmentally friendly recycled materials, and makes it possible for the users to choose the materials and textures they want to apply to certain parts of the car.



marco van leeuwen: renault 4 remake   renault 4 ever shortlisted entry rear 3/4 view





marco van leeuwen: renault 4 remake   renault 4 ever shortlisted entry front and rear views




marco van leeuwen: renault 4 remake   renault 4 ever shortlisted entryside views



the designer explains: ‘when the customer co-creates these aspects of the car, a new form of personalized cars is born. this will release some tension on the existing design view of perfect, shiny, high-gloss automobiles: it will be a car that reflects the character of the user and create awareness of sustainability overall. a true step forwards can only be a new way of looking at products such as these.’ van leeuwen also proposes the users should be invited to travel by public transport to retrieve newly purchased cars. this way transportation of the cars is no longer necessary: the impact on the environment is minimized, and the user  develops knowledge of production processes as well as sentimental value to their vehicle.



marco van leeuwen: renault 4 remake   renault 4 ever shortlisted entry interior


renault is proud of the results of the RENAULT 4 EVER competition and extends sincere thanks to all of its participants. the jury has still not made its final decision on winning entries, but the results will be published to designboom when their selections have been made.

  • Nice sketches and nice vintage look… but it looks a little bit British!

    Dario says:
  • The exterior is great! But the new interior lost the charm of the old R4-Version. It realy don´t need this center console?

    Sandra says:
  • Nice design, the front is original and could be more defined. The rest is just something more than a smooth-out of the original, no new proportions and the front end overall didn’t have to be so long. Too similar overall to the original, looks more like an old pimped R4.

    m25 says:
  • Very ugly! 8 S

    Turriano says:
  • Are these the top 10 now?

    MIckey says:
  • Striking features and pleasant visions, as evidenced in the grille, hood and tailgate. The taillight is well integrated with the contours of the car.
    The artist himself has shown his good taste, creativity and personality, demonstrating his capacity of being much more daring, with more freedom and more futuristic concepts.
    Deserved congratulations for being shortlisted.

    Sergius says:
  • Pretty sketcfhes and nice looks, but again, just a slightly different redesign of the original 4L.

    Frankly it´s starting to all look the same on this contest: a redesigned 4L with enviroment friendly recycled materials and powertrain… It starting to look like the clone wars around here.

    Sorry if I offend the participants or the jury, but I´m seeing so much lack of creativity, I have to speak up.

    What? says:
  • Maybe it’s just me, but it’s funny to note how in some cases like this, or the r4 rally or the 4Lectric, the redesigned grilles sometimes give the car an older look than the original.

    m25 says:
  • @What?: that was pretty mych expected, with such an iconic boxy design, it’s hard to get out of R4’s lines and if you break them you’re out, more than a competition this is a paradox, the hardest car man has ever designed 😛

    m25 says:
  • I wonder who will win….. a Product designer, who this site aims at….or a Car designer, who knows what they are doing when it comes to cars. Its turning out to be a weird competition. So far it looks like the majority who made it through are product designers. I’m starting to like some of the entries, in the same way you like an ugly baby, over time you get used to its face. Congrats to all the finalists anyway, you all deserve it because you actually did some work and entered it 😉

    philofax says:
  • I don’t want to be irrespectful but compared to other designboom competition’s and the car design portfolios you can see in internet there’s only one project (or two) that deserves respect in this shortislted entries. I’ts sad to see so medium-low projects… i hope the final selection (we are at August 2) surprise me a bit more. Where are those amazing works that you can see in every car design competition? This is absurd…

    A says:
  • Well, it’s not so absurd A. Most of the works you see in car design portfolios around are boosted copycats of some existing contemporary design, it’s easy to be cool when you’re unrestricted. Many of them look cool just because the ‘designer’ didn’t follow any elementary rule like they make the roof so low that there is no room for the driver’s head, and sadly, there are even famous examples: I remember a winner of some years ago where the legs of the driver had to stick out of the driving buble, I just couldn’t stop slapping myself on the forehead :/ This competition was very different in these terms, very defined I think, and even though the results may look less spectacular, I prefer this 😉

    m25 says:
  • You are right in part but i remember some of the rules that said: “please, don’t send in vague concepts but go a step further” or “redesign and sustainable solutions are needed”. As i said before, imho only two of these 10 shortlisted entries deserves to be exhibited… at least as a preliminary global vision of the entries. Now tell me where are those designs who went a step further and which of them gave “innovative” and viable solutions… I hope to change of opinion in the final shortlisted but some projects as Miguel Herranz’s R4 that looks like an amateur 3D modeller or some entries that looks like 80s cars or Asian style vehicles aren’t talking too good about this competition at the moment…

    A says:
  • I agree with What?. I only wish they would shortlist some entries that went a few steps further than these.
    To me, they all seem a bit chained to the original. The original R4 turned out to be a “design prison” stronger than expected — and designboom, by shortlisting these entries, seems to have been locked in, too.

    marceloaguiar says:
  • bla,bla,bla,bla…
    I’m a finalist, but I not comment the job of the others…Sorry friendly, where are your plans?

    L76 says:
  • m25 you talk about cool car portfolios as a result of not following elementary rules? I suggest you go back to the entries shown so far and you’ll see many fundamental rules being ignored by the participants, really it only takes 5 minutes of research to learn some fundamentals. I couldn’t agree more with A, the entries “so far” have not evolved the original design, if anything, they have watered down the 4L. To be fair there has been some good elements on some of the presentations that are worth taking a second look at but I would like to see at least a few designs that pushed the r4 forward where it would be still recognizable as an r4 but a an entire new car in its own right

    Kim says:
  • i find it pretty, simple but pretty.

    i can’t understand why everyone continues to criticize everything.
    each head is a small world ..and in this competition it’s really nice to see the individuality of each participant. it’s nice to see how many different ideas come out from a single theme.
    i honestly do not know what people expect .. a supercar? a spaceship?
    i’m a finalist, i’m not a designer, i dont have 3D designer programs .. but i love cars.. and i drew what i felt appropriate without necessarily reinvent the wheel..

    if the ten designs seen so far, despite some good ideas, have been criticized beyond belief .. when you see my project, i will come immediately buried under a mountain of manure.. but honestly I’m looking forward to it..

    patrick riva says:
  • @patrick
    How do you know that you are a finalist?

    kabubi says:
  • for ‘finalist’ i mean one of the 50 shortlisted.
    few weeks ago we received an email from db requiring our projects in high definition..

    patrick riva says:
  • @patrick I think that sometimes, specially in a top notch website like designboom and in a such “special” international competition to redesign an ICONIC car like the R4, its neccesary to say what is wrong and what is right. I consider, and sticking to this context and the rules, that what is wrong is to present to the public, designs, concepts or whatever you name it, ideas that doesn’t contribute too much about the aim of the competition. It would be desireable to see top designs according to desginboom’s/Renault high level criteria. Sometimes the most difficult it’s not to make a supercar or a spaceship as you say. in this case the goal was MINIMALISTIC concepts… yes, that was another of the rules. Kim exposed very well what i think too. I hope nobody gets me wrong.

    A says:
  • I get the point of everyone looking for a fresh design but if you actually tried to design that something, you’d see how hard that is. Attempting to revive an iconic car of the 70-80s is something unprecedented, never done before. This was a big, double-bladed sword and it’s easy to criticise these designs just giving them a look and saying there this and that.
    It is nothing like redesigning the mini or the beetle,… just think of those headlights and grille of the R4, they’re both flat and the lights too close by today’s standards, but they also make 50% of the car’s character, it takes just some smoothing and shifting and you’ve lost it, that’s why many designs have sticked to that element and the ones who didn’t, traded off a lot of the R4 charm, and this is just one boxy element.
    Get the Golf Mk.I and try to revive it, it’s the same kind of design, typical car of the 70-80s; it took VW a good 5 steps and 25 years to get to the mk.VI and sure enough, it has little more than the name and the logo resembling the original.

    m25 says:
  • @ patrick & L76,
    “A” articulates well what I’ve been trying to say ever since db started posting entries but a lot of my comments have been deleted. Anyhow, the criticism is not intended to put the participants down, is intended to point out the areas that should’ve NOT been missed by shortlisted entries in a competition of such a scale. We live in a global environment and as designers we should be aware of whats happening around us, meaning that, there are plenty of other sites where one could see the level of work that those in automotive design produce and the results for this competition should’ve been comparable. One thing I always saw in school that differentiated the product students from the automotive ones was the depth of research conducted by the former, but so far in this competition basic rules of vehicle packaging have been dismissed and not for the sake of progressive aesthetics. Yann Terrer & Jerome Garzon’s entry, albeit not very practical in the world we live in, is a very solid concept that is aesthetically well resolved and so far that’s the only 1out of the 10 showcased that display a high-level of thought and presentation

    Dave says:
  • @m25 For sure it is difficult try to remake the R4 today and make it looke “new” when the remakes of the MINI and Fiat 500 are out in the market. But there’s other cars to look at like reinterpratations of VWs or others like theChrysler Voyageur i.e. In this case i’m not criticising too the designers but the criteria to put out many of those designs. In good portfolios and serious car design competitions one of the things that makes one designer better than other is the ability to modelling small details… like Jerome Garzon’s R4 concept back lights for example. But appart from that detail (i like many more of some entries) i didn’t see too much creativity in remodelling the R4. Obviously everybody has sended the designs according to their level but imho is the responsability of “others” put the level of such important competition.

    A says:
  • m25 I couldn’t agree more with you regarding the difficulty of the competition but are you honestly satisfied with the results? I know for a fact that if these concepts were presented at ANY oem studio around the globe they wouldn’t be well received either. The reason why a lot of us have been so dissappointed is because it appears that these entries were just approached from an aesthetic point of view and didn’t consider the social significance of the R4 and in my oppinion this dicredits the results

    DsgnCrit says:
  • @A Well that’s just my opinion, but there’s a lot of difference between most car design competitions, which give competitors virtually unlimited freedom and something like this, because creativity is limited a lot when you try to design a retro concept based on such boxy design. And despite the social significance DsgnCrit mentions, we’re 50 years later now, and EVERYTHING has changed; culturally and technologically, so the only starting point to revive a similar spirit is aesthetical and I can imagine many good designs, maybe most of them were not shortlisted because they lost too much of this contact with the original R4. We’d have seen different things if people were asked to design something else, but there’s a company asking to redesign it’s most iconic model and I guess the least requirement would be to make something that looks and subconsciously feels like that model and it looks like this was the whole big trick with the R4 🙂

    m25 says:
  • When will they publish the winner???????? I cannot wait anymore!!!!!!!!!

    MIckey says:
  • Today are 10 shortlisted entries. If i had to choose only one it would be Jerome Garzon’s R4 ’cause he’s the only one who has gone really step further… ok, we’ve seen using textiles in a BMW concept and it doesn’t offer too much security, maybe not too much comfort too, but just for the chassis design it desserves it. I agree with Dave when he exposed the reasons about Jerome’s design. We will see… i must say i’ve never been so curious about the result of a competition in order to so “weird” and sadly unexpected entries. By the way, i thought that the base model was the 4L with the mini-like front grill, but no one seems to stick to that… Interesting

    A says:
  • I think that all the eco-friendly-circular economy- part of the concours is wrong… Creates a lot of confusion. The exercise to redesign the R4 is more a cultural aesthetical question. A hard challenge that requires a certain sensibility in the automotive field.
    It’s a bit forced to expect a thorough research too in terms of eco-responsability in a space of 6 low-resolution JPEGs.

    OD says:
  • I agree 100% with m25

    OD says:
  • @L76: Come on, this should be constructive criticism. I’m not saying “mine is better, mine should be here”… you are free to comment on others’ entries. My… plans will be published in my blog, and I invite you to visit it when I do — but that’s not the point here, is it?

    @m25, that’s it, I could agree more. My entry, for instance, was much more progressive in terms of design (now I’m not saying I should have been shortlisted, mind you). In fact, I was warned by my friends – and the path I took was quite intentional.

    As I said before, I think the “design prison” was pretty heavy and many didn’t manage to get away from it.

    But nevertheless I understand that if you’re redesigning a 50 year old model, one valid approach, for instance, is retro-futuristic. Some entries here did that.
    I understand that what is wanted is something that can be instantly recognised as an R4, but everytime I think about it, I always have the urge to take a more .. uh.. progressive approach.
    Anyway there are still lots of finalists to be published, maybe they’re saving the best for last (though I think 4Lectric and r4 rally are pretty good). I’m just sad they’re taking so long to disclose them.

    marceloaguiar says:
  • @OD – 6 jpegs and a text is more than enough to show thorough research — if your summarizing skills are decent.
    I think the idea of joining the circular economy in this design challenge is very interesting – otherwise it would only be just another design competition.

    marceloaguiar says:
  • I think it’s not easy no matter that this design contest tries to be “politically correct” and says: “OK, it’s all about an automotive icon but in an eco-friendly way!”. I would say ironically that today the future-R4 of Renault calls Nissan Leaf. But here the thing that has to be found – as you wrote, ‘marceloaguiar’ – something that can be instantly recognised as an R4. I don’t think it’s a “design prison”. It’s a very serious and interesting challenge. So I wouldn’t say that otherwise it would only be just another design competition.

    OD says:
  • @OD Not long ago it’s true that there was a lot of the word “eco” applyied to almost everything. But listen people, the future is NOW. There’s is no other way to make the products of today and tomorrow thinking mainly in the “eco” materials and cost of fabrication. From 2012 all the car factories have to be able to recycle the cars and the waste they produce in the factory. This is will be a law, not a fashion. In adddition its absolutely true that natural materials will no exist forever. Just take a look to the recent news about aluminium… So, that’s the point of this competition. The “eco-friendly” will be our present soon, but there will be a day soon tha we all call them… cars… simply. PD: In my previous post i was refering to the Chrysler PT Cruiser not the Voyageur : )

    A says:
  • I think that the “design prison” refers marceloaguiar is mainly because it’s difficult to make a car like the 4L beautiful today, when as the eyes of almost everybody is an ugly car today. The MINI, the Beetle, the Fiat 500, the new VW Van… were always “cute” designs, i mean really cool designs. You can see one of the ikd versionis of these cars and you inmediatly smile. Not so with the L4. I was born in the late 70’s so i grew up in the 80s and 90s and all the 4Ls i saw were supermarket cars and workers cars… How to make a car like this cool if i’ve never seen them cool? And in addition it has so exactly proportions and details that it’s difficult to make it look nice in the eyes of todays consumer… But really, that’s why is this competition great: it’s very difficult! And a good opportunity to visionary designers.

    A says:
  • […you can see one of the old versions…]

    A says:
  • the old R4 was a small car outside but big inside.. practical and able to tackle almost any terrain .. so i think that a possible reinterpretation of this car could be a ‘miscegenation between a city car and a mini suv.. and i’m sure you can make more beautiful and attractive than some garbage that you see around the street..

    (okay, then tastes and preferences are subjective..)

    patrick riva says:
  • This is definitely my favorite!

    liekeS says:
  • Unfortunately I am not one of the finalists, but I’m surprised bye the jury selection. Some of the ideas presented do not follow the brief (,… your new design project Should Respect the historical identity of the R4 model, Which was based on an extremely functional and minimalistic philosophy …), however, were short-listed.
    In most cases, there is an electric motor and batteries, None .. did not ask where and how we will get as much electricity, .. I do not see either one solution, which would be affordable simple low cost car.

    kabubi says:
  • @ Patrick Riva. Yes, in the beggining i thought in the new 4L in a car like the Ford Fusion or the Skoda Yeti between others. I’d like to see the final winner soon.
    @ Kabubi. There’s a lot of people that thinks that way, me included. Another supposed rule to follow was “the concept must look as a 21st Century Car”. So the selection of some of theses entries are like a joke.

    A says:
  • the original 4L was innovative and up to date with the technology of the time, its only now that it seems basic and simplistic. 50 years later…and the new version should follows the original, and be full of the latest tech and materials, just like the original when it came out. this design prison that people mention sounds like an excuse for failure. if you cant design the next 4L because of that, then this challenge was too big for you. DB and Renault have found 50 projects that were able to do it

    philofax says:
  • Just arrived from holidays…
    Is it still July around here?

    Tourist says:
  • @Tourist: May I put you up to date. We are in August now. But it seems that the jury’s calender is shifted…. We do not know the results of the competition yet. Nobody knows when they will publish the winner? …..

    MIckey says:
  • @Patrick: I think that´s the beauty of online competitions, being recognized or criticized, to me that´s the only way you evolve, if you get only “wow awesome project”, do you evolve? No, you just get a bigger ego, but don´t evolve, but if you get “love it, but I don´t like this and that, etc etc”, that´s how you evolve, you learn what´s right and what´s wrong.

    I was a finalist in a designboom project in the past and got the same reactions here, do I care? Yes, I care for the ones that criticize but with respect, they say what they like or disliked without being plain rude or disrespectfull, that´s one reason why I always try to find something good and bad on a project when I do a critique.

    But frankly the 10 projects I saw so far, some look really good, but they all lack the same problem: lack of creativity form wise, but I guess that´s mainly Designboom and jury problem, I understand they must have something relating to the 4L, but so far they all look slightly re-designed 4L´s, and that´s my main complaint.

    What? says:
  • @Philofax. I think that you didn’t catch what we are dabatin here but i’d like to explain you.
    1 – There was PRECISE rules
    2 – Then db put the entries
    3 – Most people, and for what i’ve read they know what are talking about, understand that the final projects doesn’t fit the rules and their designs aren’t so “21st eco cars” as they supposed to be.
    And for what i read everbody speaked up with respect. The only one point i didn’t cacht it was your comment about “product” designers and automotive designers. Anyway what some are debating is that the design of the 4L is so difficult that, seeing the results, nobody sticked to the original design too much… so, they selected wich they most liked. But everybody who can read and have some sense of design see the things in a non very good way. And as some said before, this is a constructive critic. Good luck

    A says:
  • I don’t think the jury or db can be blamed for selecting “wich they most liked” because it was stated in the brief and it can be clearly seen in all the shortlisted shown so far that the jury has selected projects with strong resemblance to the original, but I don’t think it’s so surprising, because, well, the new R4 should at least look like the old one. One project might miss one point of the brief, one other misses something else, but they are all different requirements and who ticks more boxes and more convincibly wins, this is obvious.
    If anyone complains because they feel another more relevant design was left out, we live in a free world; I guess they can post the link here or anywhere on the web so we can really see what they’re talking about, but until then, I can only say these projects have been selected more or less rationally.

    m25 says:
  • Recycle all of them as soon as possible! If you would put in production any one of them you would sell none!

    Goran says:
  • I agree with ‘What?’ — again. Looking at some of the designs here unfortunately look as if they didn’t make that ‘jump’. They just don’t look like 21st cent. cars. Some of them even look like 1/43 scale models – of the original.

    When I mentioned the “design prison”, I meant that because the R4 is so iconic, with so successful a design, it acts as a friend and a foe when you seek inspiration. On one hand you have very strong, evident features that instantly tell you what you should use to make your project an ‘R4’ but on the other hand you have that dangerous fine line beyond which you’re just copying those features with minor adjustments for the sake of History and instant recognizability (if there is such a word).

    I think some of the projects didn’t manage to escape that eminent danger – and by shortlisting them, I honestly think DB didn’t escape that either.
    Let’s face it – it’s complicated to choose a progressive design that requires an elaborate rational process from the observer to establish a connection back to the original, when you have such direct and easy approaches, designwise.

    And bottom line, it’s an international competition – you have to be mainstream.

    marceloaguiar says:
  • @ m25: Well, imho, you should define your position because you have criticised some of the entries saying that in some cases they look older compared to the classic model and now you look like you are satistified with the results and justify the criteria for the selection. But it’s just my opinion.

    A says:
  • Mainstream? I am a shortlisted myself and I don’t consider my job or the others I have seen mainstream. Sure I wish I am the winner like the other 49, but that’s not the point; I did my very best project, stayed awake for hours in bed just thinking of a single line and how it would affect the whole appearance, spent days researching the latest technologies applicable and weeks modeling and remodeling.
    I guess many of the shortlisted have done something similar and is not right to call this work “mainstream”. It’s easy to let your imagination run wild and that’s the mistake most participants seem to have done, but this is not that kind of competition you typically see on db, where you are given a couple of requirements and guidelines and at the end you see all those fabulous-looking fantasy works that strike you. I’ve spent entire days just looking at the pictures of the R4This competition was more about taming your creativity, channeling it into a very thin stream, it is like landing on a dime and I wouldn’t call it mainstream.
    Anyway, I got no blood left on me anymore waiting for the results. Let the best of us win guys!

    m25 says:
  • @A: Critics has nothing to do with appreciation, I have highlighted the positive and less positive aspects of those works but that does not mean they are not excellent works, every work has something to criticize and to appreciate.

    m25 says:
  • Sorry, the jury is on holiday?
    I have met the deadline for delivery…
    Designboom’s behavior is not serious…

    L76 says:
  • @marceloaguiar: Perhaps you are right. Most of them do not look like a 21 century car, but I think it is quite difficult to manage that with the historical image of the Renault 4L. I think the most difficult thing in this competition was to combine the image of the 21 century with the image of the 4L in the past; I mean to create a new modern car, which is related to the Renault in the past. The car should be modern, but when you see it, you should know that it is the Renault 4L. I think under the shortlisted entries are a lot of cars which are totally different from the Renault 4L, you cannot even recognize it. The aim of the competition was to give a renaissance to the Renault 4L, not to make it completely different, to keep the charm of the car, because this was actually the thing why the car was so famous. They did not want to have a brand new car, they wanted that the Renault 4L from the past fits in the environment of today without losing its “personality”. In my opinion there is only one of the below shortlisted entries who realised the combination that I mentioned a few sentence before. I hope so much that he will win…..

    MIckey says:
  • lol

    A says:
  • @Mickey
    … and which one? 🙂

    lyo says:
  • Facts:
    -Renault will got a lot of ideas,between 3200 ideas, almost free, which will be used in the near future.
    -Renault currently urgently needs a car like the Fiat 500, Citroen DS mini ..
    -If they decide to put, within two years on the market easy and cheap car, this certainly will not be electric, it will be too expensive.
    -It will be used largely tested production technology as we know them now.
    -Maybe the Renault dilemma is to make a premium or an affordable car.:)

    kabubi says:
  • I’m not an automotive designer per se, i am just a designer (from fashion to architecture) who has worked as freelance and in international reknown studios and i’ve been recognised in two other past db competitions in different categories. I did a lot of designs for this competition, but i finally thought that being Renault the jury and seeing from a lot of time the evolution of students and professional automotive designers, the selection would be very high selective, so counting that point and being very autocritic i finally decided not to send it expecting a selection of the best of the best. After seeing 90% of those selected works i feel wrong for not to sended it and being sincere after seeing works like Miguel Herranz’s and Kevin Lene’s i feel insulted. I’m sorry it is taken as an offence but this is what i think. Yann Terrer + Jerome Garzon’s and a bit of Charlie Ngheim’s (Just a bit of the front) works it’s what i was expected for what i mentioned before and for the rules they posted but inmho the other ones doesn’t deserve to be exhibitioned as samples of the best works. But i’m “happy” to know that the next time everybody can send their works whether they have done it or not. I damn myself for not to send it… hopefully this competition had a second part…

    A says:
  • @kabubi
    You’re right. Maybe they will don’t use it for a hypothetical future 4L but perhaps for the future R5.
    As you have mentioned that they have 3200 ideas for free it is possible that they are hiding the REAL best designs for their own future “cheap eco car” there is no other way i can understand this selection…

    A says:
  • I Love You Mickey’ms ….!!!

    Wurst Boy says:
  • @Iyo
    I think it is obvious that the design of the Renault 4lectric is the one who meets the criteria the best. Yes perhaps they will not produce an electric car…. but I must say that the competition rules were quite confusing. They changed them later. At first you should focus on the design and the circular economy and then they add that you can do either the design or the environmental aspect or both. I think the designers first of all are not scientists; there are creative people who respond of a problematic in our society. Nevertheless I think the concept of the 4Lectric is quite good. To be honest from the 10 shortlisted cars below there are only the 4Lectric and the r4rally which thought about the circular economy……we should recognize that.

    MIckey says:
  • I agree, most designs lack the global vision.
    The issue is not to question the aesthetics of the car but thinking about mobility in general.
    Renault seeks scenarios, replacing gasoline with electricity is good, but consumption is still one way. Involve consumer in the process of circular economy is better.

    Wurst Boy says:
  • @Mickey
    is it really obvious? :-O
    I deisagree. Don’t like that project. A very impersonal car that missed a lot of style-opportunities offered by the original R4. The only tyical element is the front grill (that actually is the facelift version’s and not the R4L’s)

    lyo says:
  • To be honest, I think 4Lectric is the only one that takes the whole design a bit further. Without losing its roots. It’s not just the front grille, the rear is completely R4 — though not mimetic. The side, too. It’s all there, it’s just not mimetic. Charlie Nghiem took the original and evolved it, instead of refining it (not sure if I made myself clear).

    @m25 – I agree with you completely. The hard thing is to not let your design fly away like mad and fall in love with it in the process. My entry is pretty much that lol … but it was very intentional. My friends told me that and I decided to take that path. Maybe you can say I’m hoplessly progressive. 😉

    And I meant Mainstream not in a pejorative way: Obviously the jury is selecting works that can ultimately lead to a production Renault restyling of the R4, just like the Fiat500.

    I don’t know which work is yours, m25, but I mean no disrespect; but honestly I’m a bit like ‘A’, and to put it nicely, I was not expecting some of these entries to be shortlisted.

    marceloaguiar says:
  • @ Mickey
    I agree with your previous reasoning about who must win but i disagree about the 4Lectric. For me the R4 Rally is the one of the beloe who is perceived as a reinterpretation of the 4L and it adapts perfectly to the rules (except that it doesn’t fit all the outdoor situations). The 4Lectric gives a very nice concept in the eco-energy department but lacks in de visual design: a bit out of proportions, while the 4L is narrower and taller this is the oposite. In addition the only relation between this and Renault is the logo… i’ve could see that car with a Nissan logo in the strets but not a Renault… The front is original and deserve its recognition but Garzon’s design is near to the competition requirements. Imho

    A says:
  • There is one important aspect of this competition that I feel many here ignore or do not understand: HIERARCHY. First and most important for renault was a car that could immediately be tracked back to the original R4: if you didn’t do that, you were out, it goes like this:
    1-L4 Legacy (visual and spiritual)
    2-Design aesthetics (making a 2011+ car but without losing point 1)
    3-Circular economy
    4-Other possible technological innovations

    And I understand “A” being concerned that “they are hiding the REAL best”, I have been discriminated in other competitions, mainly for my nationality. I have been working and studying car design trends for at least 7 years but when I have uploaded my portfolio on a european ‘car design’ website, it was rated by the owners the same as those of 12-YO kids.
    I know how that is, but the best thing to do for this is that these people publish their works (they can do it now if they were not shortlisted) so we can openly verify these claims, but talking in vain and explicitly throwing dirt on someone’s work is no good for anyone here.
    As I said before, who ticks more of those points wins and good luck to anyone, sincerely, I’m in for the fight 🙂

    m25 says:
  • @Iyo
    O.K. that is your opinion. But for instance David obendorfer just copied the car 1:1 and changed something here and there, and the others frankly speaken I cannot see what they followed… I think the 4 Lectric is not impersonal, I think it is charming. It is a modern car which does not miss the character of the R4L. Well that’s my opinion. I hope the Jury has the same point of view as I.

    MIckey says:
  • Just a thought: there are going to be 50 finalists..
    – it occurs to me that DB could have shortlisted a wider array of entries, in terms of style. Some direct, some not so direct, some stylish, some experimental, some wacky.
    – I’m kind of curious to see the other 3150 entries (or the other 3149)… 🙂

    marceloaguiar says:
  • 😀 It’s very funny. I see that it’s a matter of opinion. I think the exact opposit. I don’t think that David Obendorfer just copied the R4. indeed. I prefer his project than Charlie Nghiem’s. He has revisited very well the original model changing significantly the dimensions too. His proposal is much more mature, a credible 2011 car… I appreciate very much Yann Terrer and Jerome Garzon’s project too. It’s a visionary and courageous concept combined with a high level presentation. The only handicap is that they’ve traced the exact proportions of the original Renault 4 wich is undoubtedly out-of-date.

    lyo says:
  • Fortuanately we do not have the same liking. That is why the results are all different and the opinions are different too. I think everybody who is shortlisted can be proud even when I think there are some crazy projets under them….. ; but it is okay. This is diversity….

    MIckey says:
  • @m25, I doubt you have been discriminated on car design sites because of your ethnic background. I am an automotive designer with experience in Europe and currently working at an oem in North America and I haven’t been to a single studio which is NOT ethnically diverse. This is a highly competitive business and the technical level expected is very high, even within the studio environment our jobs depend on how we continue to evolve our technical abilities. I can personally see both sides of the argument as it took me several years to land my first automotive job. Honestly I wish I would have seen some of the level of work that I’ve seen from schools and young professionals around the globe. There are great elements about every entry shortlisted so far but there are also major holes in all of them.
    This was NOT an easy competition and my recommendation to you is to keep refining your work and take critiques with a grain of salt as they usually hold the key to ones evolution. Everyday it gets more competitive to be a designer no matter what specialty you go into, there are more qualified people than ever and less jobs and the only way to stand out is to have refined work. Being able to accept critique shows maturity and reflects that as a designer you don’t let your ego get in the way

    Jesse says:
  • @ Jesse I like your statement….

    MIckey says:
  • I know there is a great deal of fair competition Jesse, but that was only my personal experience.
    I appreciate your statement, and I sincerely welcome critics, because it’s what makes you get better, I have posted my personal thoughts on many projects shown up to now but I think to say you are insulted by somebody’s work or using other inappropriate words is a bit rude. There are more appropriate ways of criticizing than stating that someone shouldn’t have been shortlisted at all and that is my whole point.

    m25 says:
  • @Jesse
    I agree with your comment
    Sorry but i don’t agree. I exposed what i think giving precise reasons and examples of other works but i can’t repeat over and over again my contrasted thoughts about some of those selected works. If you are a designer and read what i was trying to explain, it’s easy to understand it. Being rude and inapropriate it’s insult someone or something without giving an explication. I invite you to read again my thought as well to conrast the amount of designers who thinks the same. I’ll repeat that for me Jerome’s would be 1st, Nghiem’s 2nd and the other ones i don’t mind but i consider that show the works of M.H. and K.L. & A between the others is an insult to my intelligence and to my experience and this is not to be rude this is defende a position and as i said before i’m still don’t knowing what is yours… What i don’t consider well is if you have participated that you give negative comments about others entries at least that was the responability of others but this is just my opinion and i’ll repeat it 1,000,000 more times if it’s needed. Thanks for reading

    A says:
  • Well, I don’t think there is anything wrong in opinions; I’m on the same boat with these guys and pointed out the positive and less positive aspects of the projects I commented and above all, I have always stressed that all these projects are peculiar solutions to the requirements, every design job has it’s pros and cons and I expect to hear my critics when my turn comes, but I also think that saying that someone’s job insults you, is like an insult to at least one person, but that’s just me.
    I totally agree that the entries are a notch lower on the aesthetics compared to other competitions, but there are at leas t two big reasons to explain this before pointing the finger on anyone:
    1-The more or less agreed, particular difficulty of the theme.
    2-It looks like reason number 1 had a bigger than expected effect: it looks like most of the good designers relied more on their graphics and wild fantasy and disregarded the extensive analytic process required for this unprecedented task. What happens? They fail and there are some other guys coming up, some with less car design or graphical skills in general, but who thought it over, and their projects might not look as appealing as expected, but the path they followed was more correct, teaching many of those cool car designers that sometimes they have to think more rationally.

    m25 says:
  • So, if you feel frustrated for the low rating you have received in an online portfolio then you think that some people have something against you personally, that is your problem. I didn’t read any of the comments said above, something negative about the persons, phisically, who entered their designs. I feel insulted for me and for the possible amazing works that are hided that aren’t giving the possibility to, specially young designers, show their talent. But there’s a huge difference between comment about a thing and comment about a person. If you don’t know the difference you can ask for help but i bet you that not only me feels insulted, deceived or the word you prefer about db presented me some projects as the best of more than 3000 entries.

    A says:
  • It’s always interresting to see works of many people answering to the same project and more interesting to read comments. (conctructive or not).
    If i had to retain comments, there are two:
    A) i agree with most of you that are desappointed regarding the way projects are published or not.
    It’s doesn’t brings a fairplay feeling…
    B) the law quality of projects regarding automotive designer’s books. (read in many comments).
    But the register was free and they were invited to paticipate. Maybe the 4L wasn’t prestigious enouth for them as they use to draw mercedes, bmw, audi and ferrari’s cars… That’s what i found very interesting in all project: a different approach without beeing focuced on style, surfaces etc.. And I don’t think that only people working in car’s feld have the right to brings ideas and to work on. In the end a car is a massive good that touch revery ine of us.

    RD says:
  • @RD
    I don’t like the designers who just create Ferraris, Bugatis, BMWs… i consider the best those who are able to create a wider variety. But it’s not neccesary to be a designer to understand that Renault, specially from the last electric concepts presented, it’s one of the leaders in the mainstream european companies, that is more in the seek of imaginative and futuristic concepts and as a french car maker has always had that “french touch” that i consider “thin” and expresive lines. It surprised me that the 4Lectric is admired by many while it looks “fat” and asian but i can’t see it as french car and lastly as a Renault. In the history of design mediocrity never had a space and imo less in a space like designboom. But if db is turning in other way that’s another story and i’ll started to seek about a new space for top designers. The only thing i can imagine is that Renault has hided the most intersting projects to the public and competitors.

    A says:
  • @A: My frustration was not to raise anyone’s empathy, it was just an example of some competitions and situations I have personally been through and fortunately, up to now I have seen none of that discrimination.
    Please if you can back what you say with proof, enlighten us: show us some of these better works the organizers are hiding, because their authors are now free to publish them, until then, your claims are not constructive critics, but speculations that throw dirt on this whole competition.

    m25 says:
  • @m25
    Believe me that it’s not my interest to make this little space a “conversation” between m25 and A but you could learn some of the advice that Jesse has give you and take the bad critics to grow up as a person and designer. I don’t like to use the word “dirt” but from you put it out i consider “dirt” to sell to us, the public, designers or not, intelligent or not, an “image” of what it is “extraordinarie” when it’s not. Say that, it’s not to throw bad comments freely, as you have suggested it, is to defend an IDEAL. It’s like when you see a challenge in any ability (music, miss universe… whatever) and suddenly most people see a thing and says “Oh no! What?” or “Yes! That’s great!”.
    i said “Yes, that’s great!” to only one of the entries, and nobody, and less you, because you are one of the participants, have the right to manipulate my statement in your favor.
    In life and profession there will be always bad critics and destructive critics. If you take bad critics as destructive it’s your problem, not ours. Lastly i’ve been studing and working for a long time, and i don’t like to eat “garbage”, visual or in any form. The first time i received a recognition in db was in 2004, so there’s a long time since that year i’m lookong around here and this is the first time i’m commenting the results (or previous results) of a competition. There was none of the past competitions i have think bad… always have surprised me the entries but take a look to the comments about this one. Do you think all that people is destructive or they have something against you? I feel insulted for the reasons i’ve mentioned before and for many things more like the entry of the Renault Eleve that reminds me a lot to the Marc Newson’s Ford concept. So, i’ve tried to be as clear as crystal as i could but i don’t like to discuss about subjective and futile misinterpretations but i’d like to discuss with you all about design it refers. Take a look to the comments again if you want. Have a good night

    A says:
  • Yes, neither I want a single-handed conversation and it’s the n-th time I stress that I have nothing to say about critics, it’s the thing I appriciate most and I have learned from it and treasured it since I was a kid, it helped me grow up more than anything, but there’s some difference between criticizing and saying that the only explanation for these results is that renault is discarding and hiding the best projects.
    I’ve been sticking around db the same as you, since 2004, know what you talk about and just like you, I see this competition is not “WOW”, like the others, but I’ve been inside it and I know why, I expected more or less these results from the shortlists, that’s why I am not surprized at all, because it’s a different kind of creativity, restricted, more rational and very selective. This is however my own opinion and I’m cutting it here.
    Good night to you too and to anyone who’s still sticking around.

    m25 says:
  • Compliments to this great design. If you ask me, I think you’ll be a finallist!

    FH says:
  • To all contestants greetings. It would be desirable to see sketches executed by hand. In design there is such direction. In what thought character and thinking of the participant. To expose works 100 for discussion. I am assured there many talented people. It it would be pleasant. Participation great value for the designer.

    Yours faithfully to participants and jury.

    Jason says:
  • 07_08_2011!

    kabubi says:

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

comments policy
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

design news

keep up with our daily and weekly stories
504,237 subscribers
- see sample
- see sample
designboom magazine