The first member of Renault's upcoming Initiale Paris premium sub-brand will be based on the recently-unveiled fourth-generation Clio hatchback, a new report indicates.
Similar in concept to the Peugeot 208 XY that will bow in Paris next week, the Clio Initiale Paris will feature a more luxurious interior packed with high-tech equipment and a host of aesthetic upgrades such as model-specific body colors, chrome trim and wheel designs.
Like the Baccara trim level of the 1980s, the Initiale Paris trim will be gradually extended to four or five members of the Renault lineup, including the next-gen Espace which is due out in 2014 at the earliest. After that, the trim level will slowly morph into a full-fledged sub-brand that will be similar in concept to Citroën DS lineup.
"We've already got a team of designers and engineers working on launching the Initiale Paris brand," said Carlos Tavares, Renault's Chief Operating Officer, in an interview with France's La Tribune newspaper. "We're shooting for Volvo, not Mercedes-Benz and BMW."
Tavares added that the Initiale Paris project is separate from the Alpine project that Renault is also working on. He indicated that the revival of the Alpine brand is on the right track and that the first model will bow in 2015 or 2016.
When the Clio Initiale Paris is scheduled to bow and how much it will cost was not mentioned. An official announcement about both of Renault's upcoming sub-brands will be made at the Paris Motor Show next week.