Driven to Write: Projet H
amoore100 last edited by amoore100
Hey everyone! This is my first Hyphen post so if anything doesn't look right please let me know!
In the tumultuous migration of Oppo from Kinja to here, I've been exploring other auto sites and blogs in the meantime for content to read. One I found very recently was Driven to Write, and it's basically if Hooniverse, Ran When Parked, and Curbside Classic had a baby. It's wonderfully verbose, and beautifully esoteric. I just wanted to share this article I read last night about Renault/Peugeot's stillborn DS/CX-fighting executive and the prototypes that made it out of that project, the so called "Projet H". Mostly I just wanted to share the photos of prototypes that paint a really gorgeous view of the executive market (IMO) that sadly never saw the light of day. Here's the one surviving Renault study from the project:
I personally find it to be an utterly gorgeous midcentury design with the wraparound bumpers a real harbinger of the integrated bumpers that would debut on the Renault 5 and come to define the '70s in terms of ordinary car design. On these black steelies it looks like a movie villan's getaway saloon, and I really think Renault's designers at the time did a really good job giving it the presence and mystique that a big executive should have.
On the other hand, Peugeot farmed out their design work to Pininfarina as they are wont to do and ended up with this rather more '60s looking but attractive six-light saloon:
So, very Peugeot and very Pininfarina. Attractive, but a little boring. I guess too boring to keep around since this photo is one of the only pieces of evidence that the car ever existed, though many of its cues would at least end up on the 504 coupe/cabrio. To be fair, Renault also designed a rather dowdy 16-esque hatch-looking sedan that would seemingly preclude the 20/30:
Anyways, all this is a moot point as a large executive was deemed to no longer be all that important to either brand, and the most that ever came out of "Projet H" was the PRV V6 that was created from the remnants of what was meant to be a 90° V8. I hope this isn't too much of a rehashing of Driven to Write's excellent article (which you should all go read), but I mostly wanted to share the pictures of these big and mysterious saloons lost to history. It's such an uncanny valley since these all seem relatively realistic and production-ready, but they never made more than the prototype models. Talk about a future that never happened!
davesaddiction last edited by
Thanks for the share! I'd appreciate semi-regular shares to OPPO from this site, as you come across great ones.
I've been reading Driven to Write for a few months now. It's wonderfully esoteric.
RallyDarkstrike last edited by
Hey @amoore100 , welcome!!!
Man, that surviving Renault study is GORGEOUS....love the back end design and the way the taillights are integrated into the bumper! So much classier than today's 'HOW MANY ANGLES AND SHARP CREASES CAN WE PUT ON THINGS?'
I'd never heard of this project before!
By the way, as you're new, if you haven't already, check out the User Guide if you'd like a little overview of things!
amoore100 last edited by
@rallydarkstrike Yeah, when I first saw it I was gobsmacked—it's a very clean and sleek design that I think would have looked good well into the '80s with a few facelifts, especially compared to the dowdy 20/30 and 25 that we got instead. The shape is so unique that I have no doubt it'd be a classic like the CX today if it had been made. Instead we got this:
Sounds good! I gave it a read, but it's thick and my ability to focus is completely gone from being at home all day. It's ironic because I feel like Kinja not being a forum was probably what made it seem so accessible to me back in the day, and now I have to learn my way around a forum after all! I kid, you guys have done a great job considering it's been completely bug-free for me so far! Thanks for all the effort, vive la oppo!