lunchbox 60

Very electric Renault R5 Turbo 3E, the PIIP, dissecting aesthetics with Matty Matheson, and why fixing an older luxury car is often so costly.

lunchbox 60

I’m confused. On one hand, manufacturers are shoveling piles of cash into Software-Driven Vehicles (SDV). With the other, they’re engaging ‘Drift Mode’ and flinging show and production cars through epic scenery for promotional materials.

Mainstream automakers with Drift Mode cars in production, off the top of my head: Ford, Volkswagen, Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota, Rivian, Hyundai and Genesis (the latter two in upcoming EV models).

All are also investing heavily in SDVs.

So which is it? Is the future of driving computer-assisted Drift Modes for all (and  no automaker support for additional driver training) or SDVs programmed to operate within inches of any traffic code?

I’m all for hyping up EVs with headline-grabbing claims (this is a concept, after all!) but Renault’s latest jaw-dropping, rear-drive, drift-positive design has me wondering which future it expects to be designing for, come 2030…

this is why EVs will win — look at how minimally fierce the R5 Turbo 3E is • via renault

The epically-winged R5 Turbo 3E…


  • Drifty the drift teddy bear
  • “Pop yellow” upright handbrake lever
  • Pink Plexiglass windows
  • Black cork flooring
  • A sticker reading “La vie en rose” (find it)
  • 50° of steering angle lock to lock
  • all-electric, and a rear- wheel drive
  • special outfits from La Fameuse for the car’s unveil this weekend @ Chantilly Arts & Elegance 2022


  • Surely they mean 1,000 metres… “This new-generation R5 Turbo 2 can zip across 100 metres from standstill in only 3.5 seconds (3.9 seconds in Drift mode) and reach a top speed of 200 km/h.”

Has potential:

  • 280 kW (eq. 380 hp) of total power and 700 Nm of instantly available torque
  • 10 digital dashboard screens that work like widgets
  • R5 TURBO 3E comes with 10 or so mounting brackets for cameras inside and outside – for instance in the slots for the headlights and for the exterior mirrors, which are perfect to get the best footage of its drifting prowess.”


  • Pushing ‘Free play’ to start the car
  • Pink, blue and yellow exterior LED strips flash when the car drifts
Sketch of "Drifty" the teddy bear • via Renault


see also ::

not an ad • more on the piip concept below

Metropolitan brouhaha in the year 2022: oncoming vehicles on all sides, gridlocked one-way traffic, frustrated hooting, blocked freeways, clogged arteries, furious diatribes, motorised cyclists, electric scooters, out-of-the-box thinkers, the French, wailing sirens, endless roadworks, no parking! half a roundabout with traffic lights, out of order! crossing ducklings! FLASH! a banana skin, a hole in the road!

“The PIIP and you manoeuvre effortlessly through it all…

not an ad • more on the piip concept below

“It’s mostly a hotel for squirrels,” is what professional chef and presenter Matty Matheson says of his garage. And Matty is no liar.

You don’t have to be into food or Harley-Davidson to enjoy this low-key interview—their wide-ranging discussion about design, history, and believing in your abilities is enjoyable enough.

When explaining his favourite style of motorcycle, Matheson so eloquently captures why certain things—art, cars, motorcycles, motorboats, music, etc.—remain compelling, fresh, and relevant even today.

“They didn’t have anyone to show them how to do it,” he says of early ’60s California-style custom motorcycles. “They defined what it was. And we’re still—it’s 2022, makin’ bikes look like early ’60s. That style is unbreakable because it’s an original thought.”

Prism Supply x Harley-Davidson | My Garage | Matty Matheson • Prizm Supply

Click here to view at full resolution •

That was…liberating. If you enjoy this approach for press releases, let me know. Sometimes, when prototypes like the Volkswagen GEN.TRAVEL prototype debut, the language used isn’t exactly in line with their transformative power.

Silly f**kers—Volkswagen could be earning buckets of government money to displace environmentally questionable short-haul flights with fleets of GEN.TRAVEL pods deployed at traffic-light times from passenger airport hubs.

Congratulations—if it’s just a little longer you’ll have invented the shuttle bus! When sold from the perspective of Drivers Wanted, this is a tragic development.

When sold as a cheap, convenient, and private flight alternative, who wouldn’t try a pod trip or two?

These on the Hwy.401/Autoroute 20 corridor in Ontario/Quebec, Canada? Money.

The innovative way to travel: design study GEN.TRAVEL makes world debut • Volkswagen

“Today, modern man is safe, insulated from the elements. We have climate control, home shopping; 500 channels. We can surf the net. We even have cars that are so smooth and quiet—you don’t even know you’re driving.”

Wake up

This is about feeling something again

It’s about living

Not just being alive

It’s about having kids

Not becoming your parents

It’s about getting your money’s worth

Not being taken for a ride

That’s German engineering

Technology that invigorates

Never isolates

That’s what we’re about

Is that what you’re about?

[voiceover] “On the road of life, there are passengers…and there are drivers.”

Drivers wanted.

In case you’ve forgotten, that’s the entire Volkswagen “Drivers wanted” TV commercial from the early 1990s. Seems almost alien today, eh? • Drivers Wanted on YouTube (SD)

“The PIIP and you manoeuvre effortlessly through it all…”…is how the description of how this mobility project begins.

PIIP—pronounced, as I understand it, like ‘beep’—is one of those designs that reaffirms I’m not the only crazy bastard who thinks there’s a ton of potential in bringing more affordable electric cars to market.

Like, if they’re not already readers of, I might have to make artist Harold Thys and co-creator Lowie Vermeersch honorary members.

How great is this? A simple, no-frills electric car for the people.

Admittedly, this is a collaboration project with Belgian gallery MANIERA, and because of this, there’s no car…only an exhibition in Brussels, Belgium. I’d like anyone reading this to check it out between now and November 3, 2022 and report back. ;)

The gallery is now a showroom dedicated to the PIIP concept—who knows, maybe it’ll become a surprisingly popular attraction that attracts a few do-good investors.

“For me, the appeal of the PIIP is in its character. What he or she expresses is something that cannot exist today in the ‘automotive reality’ (where everything is subject to mass sales, and so also to the taste of the masses). PIIP is different. Introverted, just being itself, free of fashions, humane, unruly, but also proud in a way. Quiet and happy to drive and to exist.” • Lowie Vermeersch

Being a gallery thing, I did have to wade past words like oeuvre, burlesque, paradoxical, and malicious to get to the good parts. The gallery included a small piece on the concept written by Gijs Milius that goes into detail on how its horn(s) and sound-emitting body works.

“Its electric engine is near soundless, but for warning a careless road user or greeting a friend the steering wheel is fitted with two horns – each with its own sound: the first (black) is a classic horn, whereas the second klaxon (green) has a more tender and elated timbre. The right-hand (!) passenger has their own green klaxon on the dashboard – after all four eyes see more than two!
“Parking sensors are not necessary, because the PIIP’s engineers have come up with a playful alternative: the bodywork for the front, side and rear has been developed in a resilient yet supple material that can be lightly pressed without being damaged. When this happens, a gentle ‘piip’ sounds out!”

Envisioned with a near-silent electric drivetrain, both flat-folding and fully removable seats, and those innovative controls, PIIP is another one of those incredible Marc Newson Ford 021C-like concepts that are meticulously thought-out, make perfect sense, and yet—because they come from outside the auto industry—have a one in never chance of seeing production.

No? Prove me wrong by making me a customer. ;)

harald thys piip x MANIERA

see also :: Piip is a playful electric car designed by artist Harald Thys • Wallpaper*

File under: Why don’t I take a chance on that cheap luxury car I just saw on the internet…?

New Maserati Skyhook struts with warranty? $2,000 Usd., each. Bushing for said strut? $200 extra. Screen? About $700, used. Motor mounts? $1,000, apiece. Interior trim panels? Ungluing themselves one by one.

Better find a shop that subscribes to Maserati’s software access for repairs, else an unscrupulous mechanic glosses over an inability to fix an issue and temporarily clears codes instead of completing a repair.

Take note before you feel too smug: none of the items are unique to a fossil-powered vehicle; these are all wear items that can go wrong in an EV, too.

This Quattroporte is only a 15 year old car—remember to pour one out in 2037 for those who are repairing their state-of-the-art-in-2022 car. Apparently, some marques, like Aston Martin, are even worse when it comes to parts prices. :\

“Here’s the thing: that car’s a $100,000-200,000 car. The value of the car has dropped—the prices of the parts did not.” • Car Wizard

$3K bill for just 2 items! CAR WIZARD warns the price of repairing this '07 Maserati Quatroporte • Car Wizard



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