Though the Gordini name was cheapened by applying it with some stripes to run-of-the-mill European hatchbacks, Renault is reportedly planning on relaunching it for its most extreme track toys.
If you, like us, were disappointed when Renault revived the Gordini name only to use it on some striped hatchbacks, we've got some good news. Reports from Europe indicate that the French automaker plans to relaunch the Gordini brand again, but this time it will be used to connote only the most extreme track-focused models the company will offer. For those not schooled in the most obscure of French automotive history, Gordini was a racing team that competed in F1 in the 1950s, among other series.
Gordini teamed up with Renault to compete at Le Mans in the 60s, the latter formally acquiring the former in 1969. After decades of allowing it to lay domant, Renault created a lot of hype a few years ago surrounding the revival of the Gordini name, only to whore out the name. Renault took some of its existing hot hatches, put some blue paint and white stripes on them and called them Gordini editions. To add insult to injury, it then spread the Gordini name to non-Renaultsport base models, consigning a once great name to a marketing gimmick for budget hatchbacks.
The French automaker seems to have learned from its mistakes, though, relaunching the Alpine name for a sportscar to be co-developed with Caterham. With Alpine soon to be back on the map, Renault has reportedly outlined that the Renaultsport line (formerly based at the Dieppe plant where the Alpine will now be built) will continue to be offered, but that the more extreme versions will be sold as Gordinis. While the new Gordinis are expected to be principally track-focused toys, there is the potential, Renault COO Carlos Tavares reportedly admitted, to market street-legal Gordinis as well.