Renault to relaunch Gordini hot hatch brand

Published: 03 March 2009

Renault is relaunching its Gordini brand in Europe with a new Twingo Gordini model in 2010. And hardcore sporting versions of the Clio and Megane Coupe will follow, a marketing chief disclosed tonight.

Global marketing director Stephen Norman revealed Renault’s plan at an after-show dinner after the Geneva expo. He confirmed that Renault had been forced to can certain new car projects – such as the proposed reborn Alpine coupe, put on ice in autumn 2008 – because of the economic downturn.

‘But Alpine is one of two sports car brands Renault owns,’ he said. ‘Think of the possibility of spory Renaults with steps up like the Mini Cooper and Cooper S.’

The new Gordini hot hatch brand, which he confirmed would launch in 2010, would sit above the existing Renaultsport troupe of hot hatchbacks. Expect a plethora of blue paint jobs with white stripes (on the bonnet, not the band) and a Gordini formula for club motorsport.

Norman admitted that the Twingo would arrive first in 2010, followed by a Clio and Megane Coupe.

Think of the Gordini brand mirroring the Abarth badge at Fiat. Some at Renault fear that another sporting brand might dilute the good work done on Renaultsport, but Stephen claimed the Gordini name had researched well.

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By Tim Pollard

Group digital editorial director, motoring news magnet