IN THE WORLD OF MOTORS
The column materials were prepared by Alexey Vorobyov-Obukhov and Mikhail Gzovsky
The unusual Avantime coupe, which Renault demonstrated first in Western Europe (Paris, 1998) and then at the Moscow 99 Motor Show, is about to move from the category of concept cars to the category of luxury class production cars. The first customers will be given car keys in the middle of this year.
Created in collaboration with Matra Automobile, Avantime offers a new architecture and interior design so that the trip is not only comfortable, but also unusual. Therefore, “Avantime” was designed, frankly, non-standard: at first they realized the fantasies of interior artists and only after that took up the “exterior”. The cabin will appeal to the sybarites - in it the driver and three passengers will be placed so that those sitting behind do not have to stretch their legs. A special atmosphere is created by a panoramic glass roof, the sliding part of which forms the largest hatch on the market today. On long journeys, a trunk of 540 liters will help; the video system - a DVD player and two screens “implanted” in the backs of the front seats will also be useful.
Doors "Avantayma" - rotary-sliding. This provides easy access to both the front and rear seats. Doors do not swing open at a wide angle, which is especially valuable when parking in crowded cities. The patented two-stage mechanism works with an accuracy of one hundredth of a millimeter, so it takes less effort to close the doors than in a classic coupe, but they are almost twice as heavy!
There was a place in the body structure for other innovative solutions: the front and rear pillars are made of unpainted aluminum and connected by a power bar. This original scheme not only improves safety performance, but also gives the appearance of Avantime more swiftness.
Kupespeys, as the French themselves call it, will also appreciate driving performance: Avantime claims for belonging to the Gran Turismo class are reinforced by the capabilities of a powerful six-cylinder engine with a manual gearbox and disc brakes with an emergency braking amplification system. The following are preliminary technical data.