French Design Student Envisions Spectacular Open-Top Track Monster

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Re-imagined record breaker as frugal as it is awesome to look at.

Peugeot isn't exactly the best-known car brand in the USA (it hasn't sold cars in the States since 1991), but that's not to say you should dismiss it entirely. After all, it's a company with a long history and a huge back catalog of great cars that loads of budding designers tap into for inspiration. One such creator is Julien Fesquet, a student at France's ISD Rubika design school who's created one of the craziest cars to ever wear Peugeot's roaring lion badge.

Simply called the 'Project M15,' this collaborative effort with Peugeot is a re-imagining of the 404 Diesel – a record-breaking prototype that helped establish Peugeot as a maker of the best diesel engines in the world (maybe Volkswagen should seek inspiration from Peugeot, too...) Whereas the 404 was clearly based on a humble road car, the M15 is obvious from the outset as a wild flight of imagination. Everything about the M15 screams design study excess, yet it all has a purpose. The rakish bodywork and tapering rear aero, for instance, have all been done in the name of aerodynamic efficiency.

The focus on aerodynamics also applies to the M15's most distinctive feature: the dimpled tonneau cover that reduces aerodynamic drag. If it reminds you of a golf ball, that's good, as it's what Fesquet was inspired by when he conjured that solution up. Even the asymmetric seating position (a more obvious nod to the 404 Diesel) has been repurposed so the driver can sit as low down in the cockpit as possible – meaning a lower center of gravity and no need for a pesky, drag-increasing windshield. If this is what Julien Fesquet can come up in his first year of studying, we can't wait to see what his final major project ends up being.

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