Algeria September 2014: Renault Symbol leads the way

October 22nd, 2014 No comments

1. Renault Symbol Djerba July 2014Renault Symbol (Tunisian model pictured)

* See the Top 10 best-selling models and brands by clicking on the title! *

The brands ranking seems to be stabilising somewhat in Algeria this month, with the Top 3 most popular manufacturers identical to their year-to-date order: Renault is king with 4,706 sales followed by Peugeot at 3,506 and Hyundai at 3,253. Notice also Kia up to 4th, Skoda stable at #9 and Suzuki back inside the Top 10. Model-wise, after its twin the Dacia Logan topped the sales charts last month, the Renault Symbol takes the lead for the first time so far in 2014 thanks to 1,773 units sold. The Hyundai Accent remains 2nd at 1,588 units and reclaims the year-to-date lead off the Logan with 17,267 sales vs. 16,556. The Kia Picanto is up two spots on August to #3, the Toyota Hilux back up 5 to #5, and we welcome the Hyundai i10 (#7) and Dacia Sandero (#9) for the first time inside the monthly Algerian Top 10.

Previous month: Algeria August 2014: Dacia Logan now #1 year-to-date

One year ago: Algeria October 2013: Dacia Logan back in charge

Full September 2014 Top 10 models and brands Ranking Tables below.

Read more…

Categories: Algeria

Media Post: How to improve the resale value of your car

October 22nd, 2014 No comments

Picture courtesy of newcarsplus.com.au

You’ve already gone through the stress of buying a car and now when it comes to selling it, you’ve realised there are more new headaches coming down the road. Everyone loves a good bargain and they will be on the hunt when looking to buy a car themselves. On the flipside, you as the seller want to get the absolute best bang for your buck. There are a couple tips and tricks to help you along the way that will help increase the value of your car.

Four Quick, Easy, and Inexpensive Repairs:
There are some very simple fixes you can make to your car before listing it to sell. The buyer will look for any excuse to decrease the value of your car so take these easy steps recommended from Kelly Blue Book itself in order to get the most of your car. These 4 simple fixes are fairly cheap, take little time, and will prevent the buyer from having any minor reason to haggle with you:

1. Replace your lights: If you have a broken head or tail light it’s a very simple fix and will improve the value of your car to the buyer. It takes only a few minutes to replace and you just need the replacement bulb and a screwdriver to fix.

2. Fix any chips or cracks in your windshield: Any chips or cracks in your windshield will equate to major money to the buyer of your car. In reality, getting these little dings in the glass will be fairly cheap to fix.

3. Replace your breaks and tires: When a buyer checks out your car, they will look at the wear and tear on your breaks and tires. This is typically a general reflection on the overall wear on your car. If your car has high mileage on top of worn out tires, expect them to ask for a fairly hefty reduction in price.

4. Repair major dents and scratches: Most used cars will have minor dents and scratches but if your car has anything that stands out significantly, expect to get those repaired yourself to save money. Getting dents out and scratches hidden is typically an inexpensive fix but will greatly improve the appearance of your car to the buyer. Installing a vinyl wrap may help reduce scratches and damage to paint as well.

Keep Records and Reports
Every car needs standard maintenance and keeping records of these can help show the buyer that you’ve been taking care of your car properly. Typically a buyer will bring a mechanic to check your car for glaring issues and to check that the car has been properly maintained so it’s better to be prepared with your records if an issue is brought up.

Just like your credit score, your vehicle identification number (VIN) report is important. This report includes the history of your car such as owners, accidents, and servicing. Every buyer typically looks at this before purchasing and if there is a discrepancy in the VIN it’s easier to contact the company to change the error opposed to trying to persuade the buyer that it’s a mistake in the system

Upsell Money Boosting Options
Although you can’t change many of your options already included in your car, you can upsell these options to the buyer in order to increase the value of your car. The Chicago Tribune has a comprehensive list of options that can help or hurt the value of your car when reselling. If your car has the following options be sure to mention them as they persuade buyers to pay a bit more for your car versus the same one without these options:

  1. Premium tires
  2. Better upholstery (Such as leather)
  3. Convenience items in trucks

If your car has fairly standard but optional features such as remote keyless entry, power locks, power windows, and tilt steering wheels it most likely won’t bump your car up too much in price but may still be worth mentioning.

Categories: Uncategorized

Paris Auto Show 2014: An exclusive interview with Dacia

October 21st, 2014 5 comments

Dacia Dokker Lodgy Stepway Paris Auto Show 2014Dacia unveiled the Dokker and Lodgy Stepway in Paris.

* See the Full interview by clicking on the title, and all Paris Auto Show 2014 Reports here! *

This is the last part in my Paris Auto Show 2014 series of reports: an exclusive interview with Renaud Pirel, Renault Entry Range Sales & Marketing Director, and Frédéric Favre, Dacia Press Relations Manager. I have never hidden the fact that I am a big fan of Dacia’s brand strategy, that has enabled it to go from 0 to 5 million units sold in 10 years, still posting in 2014 the fastest growth rates of any mass brand in France and Europe. Being French but living in Australia since 12 years ago, I have witnessed the Dacia adventure from afar, getting a snapshot of its popularity in France every year I came back for a visit. An experience I have described in two successive articles: France August 2012: Dacia, king of the countryside and Nice hinterland September 2013: one Dacia in every tiny village.

This is the first time I get to speak with Dacia directly, and it was the most fruitful interview I conducted at the Paris Auto Show. I even got a very open answer to something that has puzzled me for a while: the lack of success of the Dokker LCV in France, and we reversed roles at the end when I got interviewed by Dacia about the potential success of the entry range in Australia. The full interview is below the jump.

Dacia Sandero StepwayThe Stepway variant accounts for 2/3 of all Sanderos sold in Europe, 90% in Northern Africa.

BSCB: Automotive News Europe announced recently that the Dacia range was about to be streamlined, with either the Dokker, Logan MCV or Lodgy to be cancelled. Do you confirm?

Frédéric Favre: This is a huge misunderstanding, there is absolutely no intention to cancel any of the models you mentioned.

Renaud Pirel: Not only that, but we also keep investing and thinking about new ideas on each of these 3 models, so they are here to stay.

BSCB: Glad we cleared that one up. Dacia is up 21% in France and up 35% in Europe so far this year. What’s next?

Renaud Pirel: The sky is the limit! No to be perfectly honest, as a principle we never communicate market share or volume objectives for Dacia, only Group ones by our President. But before I address the ‘What’s next’ question, it’s worth taking stock of what’s happened in the decade that the brand has been commercialised in Europe – it launched in France in June 2005 – because a lot of elements that will form our future lie in our foundations. In short, I believe the explosive growth rates we have consistently achieved over that period come from our capacity to always remain in touch with our customers.

The adventure started with the Logan, which wasn’t originally designed for Western European markets let alone France (BSCB note: C-segment sedans are all but dead in French sales charts). The extension of the Dacia range into other segments has always been decided based on customer feedback. The first Logan customers bought into the idea of a new, very simple car with a 3 year-warranty as an alternative to a similarly-sized 2-3 year-old used vehicle often without a manufacturer warranty beyond the few months required by law. On this foundation, we have managed to build the Dacia brand.

Dacia Picnic 2010. Picture courtesy of larevueautomobile.com Dacia picnic. Picture courtesy of autodeclics.comThe 6th annual Dacia picnic attracted 14.000 Dacia owners in France last June.

Understanding our customers is paramount because they are not the same customers that we were used to dealing with through Renault. They belong to the used-vehicle universe, and we realised that as car manufacturers we actually didn’t have much information about this type of customers. So when we tested their interest for this type of products with the Logan, these customers were actually surprised that a car manufacturer would be willing to communicate with them, they were not used to that. So they weren’t shy in talking with us and we received a huge amount of feedback that we were able to utilise to grow the brand. Based on this, we rapidly launched the 7-seat Logan MCV, then the Sandero, Duster, Lodgy and Dokker.

Full interview below.

Read more…

Paris Auto Show 2014: Has Renault lost its mojo?

October 21st, 2014 5 comments

Renault Espace Paris Auto Show 2014aRenault Espace

The Paris Auto Show was the first motor show in the world, established in 1898 by industry pioneer Albert de Dion. This is where French manufacturers are expected to shine, surprise and revolutionise the automotive world. In 1922, an astounding 81 French automobile makers were exhibited at the Show.

Renault Twingo Paris Auto Show 2014aRenault Twingo

As the #1 French manufacturer for the past 70 years, Renault has used the Show in the past to make big noise about new and upcoming models. From the 1947 Paris Motor Show where Renault unveiled the first mass-produced French car, the Renault 4CV, to the 1992 Show where it stunned the automotive world by revealing the Twingo which would go on to achieve legendary success for the brand, and 2002 when the doomed yet prestigious Vel Satis was unveiled.

Renault Espace Paris Auto Show 2014b Renault Espace Paris Auto Show 2014c Renault Espace Paris Auto Show 2014dRenault Espace interior, featuring incredibly cramped and windowless third row seats.

In this context, Renault’s efforts at this year’s Paris Auto Show have left me frankly unsatisfied and a little worried. All Renault’s energy at the inaugural press conference on the first press day was spent talking up the new generation Espace, granted a paramount nameplate for the brand, but with very little sales power. Worse, the world class smarts the first generations Espace showcased have all but disappeared to give way to an SUV-esque silhouette with pretentious interior and ridiculously cramped third row seats. Is Renault starting to take itself too seriously?

Renault Twingo Paris Auto Show 2014bRenault Twingo

The Espace wasn’t exactly new news as its design and most features were known well before the Paris Auto Show, yet it took complete centre stage at Renault’s stand with no less than 10 examples displayed. The other star model on the Renault stand wasn’t new either: the third generation Twingo had been unveiled in Geneva last March and had already hit French roads (#8 in September). Yet there were 7 of them on the stand. Although I have to say I do like the colour-changing light balls hanging from the ceiling that have become Renault’s trademark over the past few international Auto Shows…

Renault Eolab Concept Paris Auto Show 2014Renault Eolab Concept

Paris Auto Show 2014: The 20 things to remember

October 21st, 2014 No comments

1. Lamborghini Huracan1. Lamborghini Huracan

* See the Full Photo Report by clicking on the title and all other Paris 2014 Reports here *

The Paris Auto Show 2014 just closed its doors on Sunday and was another tremendous success at over 1.2 million visitors. There is one more interview I will share with you very shortly, but until then here are my Top 20 highlights of the show outside of French manufacturers, covered separately. Completely subjective highlights based on design, new finds, stand layouts, and my overall experience there compared to the expectations I may have had before coming in.

My first highlight is the Lamborghini stand. Whether it be in Frankfurt, Geneva, Beijing or here in Paris, Lamborghini has brought a consistently prestigious flair into every Show I’ve had the privilege to attend. The Volkswagen-owned Italian marque comes up with new vehicles each time to ensure they make news, models look sexy, somewhat out-of-reach in a playful way and always ravishingly, glamourously and enticingly expensive. I can’t wait for the next Show.

2. Mini Superleggera Vision 1 3. Mini Superleggera Vision 2 4. Mini Superleggera Vision 32. Delicious: the Mini Superleggera Vision

Not a World Premiere but what a delightful vision indeed. The line “British Born, Italian tailored” fits this speedster concept that I would love to see produced to the tee. Every detail is spot on, including the rear lights in the shape of English flags and the Como Blue paint that screams “take me on a tour round Lake Como”. Ready when you are Superleggera.

5. VW XL Sport

3. Volkswagen XL Sport

I had not been a great fan of the VW XL1, another awkward-looking car sacrificing beautiful design for fuel efficiency. Now eating my words with this sublime XL Sport, with the added guts of placing a 1,199cc V-twin motorcycle engine used in the Ducati 1199 Superlegerra, a donation facilitated by the acquisition of Ducati by Volkswagen in 2012. I love how Volkswagen generates and advertises synergies between its stable of brands.

6. Maserati Alfieri Concept4. Maserati Alfieri Concept

Although it was already present at the Geneva Auto Show earlier this year, I am not getting tired of the Maserati Alfieri Concept’s muzzle. Never had a white shark with a gaping mouth looked so good at an Auto Show.

7. Toyota iRoad5. Toyota iRoad

Toyota reserved a surprisingly large section of its stand to its Personal Mobility Vehicle, the iRoad. A clear message here that the Japanese manufacturer wants us to take this new type of vehicle it came up with with the utmost seriousness. Noted.

8. Opel stand6. Opel stand

Right in the middle of a controversial kill of the Chevrolet brand in Europe, General Motors is now putting all its energy into the Opel brand and sent a strong signal this year at the Paris Auto Show. Its stand was much larger than I expected, vibrant, pumping with music while managing a dark, cocktail bar look that conveyed a classy image contrasting with the current perception of the brand most European consumers have. Opel is back and wants you to know it.

8b. Tesla stand7. Tesla stand

One year ago at the Frankfurt Auto Show, the single Press rep at the minuscule Tesla stand confided in me with bright shiny eyes that the Model S had just topped the overall sales charts in Norway. This would end up happening a couple more times over the following 6 months. In Paris, small Tesla is becoming big with a full-scale stand that was more than holding its own against the industry’s traditional behemoths. Always heart-warming to see a brand jumping leaps and bounds towards mass success.

9a. Jeep Renegade interior8. Jeep Renegade interior: a good mix of tradition and playfulness
9b. Lexus NX interior9. Lexus NX interior: as convoluted as its silhouette
9c. Mini Countryman interior10. Only for the fans: Mini interior  9d. Smart Forfour interior11. Fresh but Chinese-flimsy: the Smart ForFour

8-11. Interiors.
I am particularly picky on car interiors, and the Paris Auto Show proved this once again. Only one new interior made me really happy: the Jeep Renegade’s. I liked the mix of tradition (“Since 1941″), typically-Jeep shapes, playful colour mix and down-to-earthness. I can see myself driving this little beauty for days on end through the Australian Outback…
When the first pictures of the Lexus NX popped up on the internet I thought it was all a joke. Just as my eye is slowly getting used to its bleedingly sharp angular silhouette, an overly convoluted, button-heavy interior is ruining everything…
I don’t mind the new Mini 5 door, but as for the standard Mini its dashboard looks unbelievably un-driverfriendly and actually unsafe to keep track of while driving.
Let’s finish on a particularly cringe-worthy experience all-round: the Smart ForFour. Here again exterior design is to me a massive improvement on the first generation. But why oh why do the doors sound like they will remain stuck in your hand if you slam them too hard, and everything on the dashboard, although very fresh-looking, feels like it could get broken off by a vigorous slap? We’re not in China, Smart.

10. Nissan IDx Freeflow12. Nissan iDX Freeflow Concept

Not a new concept once again but I am absolutely loving the retro-future design and dual colours. I want one. Now.

11. Dongfeng Giotti Victoria Gladiator13. Dongfeng / Giotti Victoria Gladiator

This was a very interesting find at the Show. Did you know that the Dongfeng mini pick-up was assembled under licence in Italy under the name Giotti Victoria Gladiator? More, that it is imported and commercialised in France by a company called MAM Strager (www.mamstrager.com), selling around 100 units per year mainly in semi-rural areas of the south half of France like Le Creusot? Now you do. It doesn’t appear in official stats likely because MAM Strager doesn’t have official connections with the AAA and CCFA which record new car sales in France…

The next highlights are below.

Read more…

Portugal September 2014: VW Golf confirms pole position

October 21st, 2014 1 comment

VW Golf Portugal September 2014. Picture courtesy of largus.frVW Golf

* See the Top 195 models and Top 33 All-brands by clicking on the title! Thanks Antonio *

The spectacular recovery of the Portuguese new car market is still ongoing: sales are up 32% year-on-year in September to 9,701 units, bringing the year-to-date total to 107,404 registrations, up 35% on 2013. Peugeot takes the lead of the brands ranking this month, overtaking Volkswagen with sales up 67% to 1,025 for a 10.4% market share thanks to great performances of the 208 (#2 above the Renault Clio), 308 (#11) and 2008 (#19 just below the Captur). Renault remains leader year-to-date however with 11.5% share vs. 9.6% for Volkswagen and 9% for Peugeot. Notice also Nissan up 106%, Dacia up 98% and Skoda up 81%.

Mercedes C Class Portugal September 2014The Mercedes C-Class is up to #6 in Portugal this month.

Surprise in the models sales charts: whereas it had never topped the ranking in the time BSCB has been following Portugal monthly (June 2013), the VW Golf ranks first for the 2nd straight month with a very satisfying 5.7% market share (vs. 3.5% year-to-date). This means the Portuguese market has been dominated by a Volkswagen for 3 consecutive months now (the Polo was #1 in July). Below the Nissan Qashqai strong once again at #4, Mercedes manages to place two models inside the Tp 6 (the A-Class at #5 and C-Class at #6), something no other manufacturer was able to do this month! Mercedes is the #3 brand in the country in September ahead of Renault with a huge 9% market share…

Previous month: Portugal August 2014: VW Golf takes the lead in market up 26%

One year ago: Portugal September 2013: BMW 3 Series up to 2nd place!

Full Top 195 models and Top 33 All-brands Ranking Tables below.

Read more…

Categories: Portugal

Latvia September 2014: Ford Focus sovereign

October 21st, 2014 No comments

Ford Focus Latvia September 2014. Picture courtesy of largus.fr2015 Ford Focus

* See the Top 75 models and Top 33 All-brands by clicking on the title! Thanks Peteris *

New car sales in Latvia slow down their progression in September at +2% year-on-year to 1,155 registrations, the weakest year-on-year growth ratio so far in 2014. Year-to-date sales are up a very robust 20% on 2013 after 9 months at 11,072 units.  Volkswagen cements its lead in the brands ranking thanks to 210 sales and 18.2% share vs. 120 and 10.4% for Toyota, threatened this month by Skoda at 118 units and 10.2%. Helped by runout prices for the outgoing model, the Ford Focus takes the lead of the models sales charts in September with a massive 7.1% market share to be compared with 1.7% and #13 year-to-date… The Skoda Yeti is back up 4 spots on August to 2nd place at 5.5% share and reinforces its year-to-date leadership at 4% share, the VW Golf rounds up the podium at 5.3% ahead of the Nissan Qashqai at 4.2% and the Toyota RAV4 at 2.7%. Finally notice the arrival of the Citroen C4 Cactus at #75 with 4 units sold.

Previous month: Latvia August 2014: VW Caddy and Ford Focus in the lead

Previous year: Latvia Full Year 2013: VW Golf and Ford Focus on top

Full September 2014 Top 75 models and Top 33 All-brands Ranking Tables below.

Read more…

Categories: Latvia

Indonesia September 2014: Datsun Go+ 114 sales off Top 10

October 21st, 2014 No comments

Datsun Go+ Panca Indonesia September 2014. Picture by autobild.co.idDatsun Go+ Panca

* See the Top 20 best-selling models by clicking on the title! *

Red flags all around: one of the most dynamic new car markets is the world over the past 3-4 years, Indonesia is getting a cold. For the second time in the past 3 months, new car sales are down year-on-year at 102,711 units, down 11% on September 2013 which was, granted a new all-time monthly figure record (115,921). The year-to-date total now stands at 918,764, still the highest ever 9 month-tally in the history of automobile in Indonesia but now up only by a meagre 1% on 2013. The Toyota Avanza is still king of the models ranking but its market share is going down to a lowest-ever 11.9% share, beating its previous low of 12.2% hit last July. The reason: increased competition in the MPV segment.

Suzuki Ertiga Indonesia September 2014The Suzuki Ertiga is back on the Indonesian podium.

In fact the Top 4 best-sellers are all MPVs this month in Indonesia, perfectly illustrating a long-term trend we have been observing over the past decade. The Honda Mobilio continues to amaze in 2nd place with a very solid 7.4% market share, the Suzuki Ertiga is back up two spots on August to round up the podium at #3 and 4,723 sales while the Daihatsu Xenia is up 3 ranks to #4 and 4,617 units. The big news is lower: another MPV, the all-new Datsun Go+ Panca, misses out on its very first Top 10 ranking by just 114 sales at #11 with a record 2,753 sales and 2.7% share. Indonesia shapes up as the only country so far where Datsun, newly relaunched as a low-cost brand by Nissan, is hitting the mark. Stars of the past 12 months, the twins Toyota Agya (#6) and Daihatsu Ayla (#12) take a breather this month: they rank #3 and #9 respectively year-to-date.

Previous month: Indonesia August 2014: Market back on track

One year ago: Indonesia September 2013: Daihatsu Ayla and Toyota Agya in Top 7!

Full September 2014 Top 20 models Ranking Table below.

Read more…

Categories: Indonesia

Singapore September 2014: Honda increases sales 8-fold

October 21st, 2014 No comments

Honda Jazz Singapore September 2014. Picture courtesy of posttoday.comHonda Jazz

* See the Top 33 All-brands by clicking on the title! *

New car sales in Singapore are up a whopping 50% year-on-year in September to 2,946 registrations, bringing the year-to-date total to 20,124 units, up 18% on 2013. Toyota including Lexus continues to outperform the market at +89% to 19.7% market share this month, while Mercedes (+38%) and especially BMW (-16%) lose share. What is happening in Singapore is simply the market progressively returning to where it was in 2010 before a surge in the Certificates of Entitlement’s price (basically the right to drive a car in Singapore) reduced new car sales to mainly premium brands. BMW topped the annual charts in 2011 and 2012 and Mercedes did so in 2013. These two brands are now receding, while mass brands shoot back up: Honda is up 689%, Nissan up 419%, Suzuki up 280%, Mazda up 252%, Subaru up 218%, Hyundai up 191% and Kia up 169%!

Previous month: Singapore August 2014: Toyota/Lexus and Nissan in great shape

One year ago: Singapore September 2013: BMW only 14 units below Mercedes year-to-date

Full September Top 33 All-brands Ranking Table below.

Read more…

Categories: Singapore

Paris Auto Show 2014: Top 10 Best of Cars & Fashion exhibition

October 20th, 2014 No comments

officielexpoautomode-e1410362723887

The Cars and Fashion exhibition was on as part of the Paris Auto Show 2014, displaying some pretty spectacular models. My 10 favourites are featured below.

Alfa Romeo Montreal Coupé Bertone

Alfa Romeo Montreal Coupé Bertone 2

Alfa Romeo Montreal Coupé Bertone detail1. Alfa Romeo Montreal Coupé Bertone

This Coupé is based on a prototype designed by Marcello Gandini (who also designed the Lamborghini Miura), while he was working with Bertone. The prototype was exhibited at the Montreal Universal Exhibition in 1967, with the objective being to create and exhibit “La massima aspiration dell’uomo in fatto di automobili”, man’s highest aspiration in the matter of automobile. Bringing this prototype into production ended up being more difficult than expected and had to wait until the 1971 Model Year. 3.925 were produced between December 1970 and July 1974 and the Coupé Bertone was sold until 1977. It remains one of the most beautiful Italian coupés of the seventies.

Maserati Boomerang2. Maserati Boomerang Concept Car Ital-Design

Giorgetto Giugiaro founds Ital Design in 1968 and presents the Maserati Boomerang in 1971, one of the sassiest concepts of Maserati’s entire history. The Boomerang features a cutting or even bleeding-edge line, anticipating a few years early what would end up being Maserati’s style over the second half of the seventies. The future continues inside with an ultra-modern dashboard that features all instruments grouped inside the steering wheel which literately revolves around the meters.

Mercedes Benz C111-II3. Mercedes-Benz C111-II

The Mercedes C111 was unveiled at the Frankfurt Auto Show in September 1969. This “research-car” intrigued at the time, mainly because of its “cornered” lines pushed to the extreme, its scissor doors, incredible metallic orange paint and body made of glass fiber reinforced plastic. 6 months later at the 1970 Geneva Auto Show, a reworked version, called C111-II was unveiled. It featured a larger boot and quad rotor engine. A total of 14 examples were manufactured between 1969 and 1979, including 6 C111-II, but this model was never commercialised.

Alfa Romeo Carabo

Alfa Romeo Carabo 2

Alfa Romeo Carabo detail4. Alfa Romeo Carabo

The Alfa Romeo Carabo was designed by Marcello Gandini and presented by Bertone in 1968. It marked a brutal severance from the curvy and voluptuous lines that were fashionable at the time. With its irised green colour and golden windshield, the Carabo clearly evokes a beetle – especially with its outstretched hydraulically-assisted revolving doors, hence its name referring to a kind of scarab. This prototype was created in record time, despite the technical challenges posed by an extremely fragile windshield composed of two leafs of glass sandwiching a thin gold leaf.

Unveiled at the Bertone stand at the 1968 Paris Auto Show, the Carabo is a real shock for many visitors, but the warm welcome it received had Alfa Romeo trust Bertone once again for a new V8 Coupé: the Montreal (see above). By imposing its brutal and cuneiform design, the Alfa Romeo Carabo, a strange concept car with psychedelic colours remains, almost 50 years after its creation, one of the most important milestones in the history of automobile design.

Renault Alpine A3105. Renault Alpine A310

At the same time the successor of the twice World Rally Car champion Renault Alpine A110 and aimed at competing with Porsche, the Renault Alpine A310 had a tough task ahead when it launched in 1971. The A310 had a more aggressive look than the A110 with its tight line and 6 headlamps, but was however destined more to gentlemen-drivers than pure rallymen. The interior now sports carpet, is a lot more comfortable than the A110 and its features are much richer. The car is much heavier too at an additional 200kg which will attract criticism from the press, handicapping the car’s supposedly sporty status.

Peugeot 402 Eclipse6. Peugeot 402 Eclipse

Invented by amateur designer Georges Paulin, the retractable roof first appeared on the 1934 Peugeot 401, the first car series in the entire world to feature this system. The Peugeot 402 offers a ‘Coach’ version with retractable roof called Eclipse as soon as its launch in 1935. 580 examples would be produced between 1935 and 1941.

Renault Juvaquatre7. Renault Juvaquatre Fourgonette

The Renault Juvaquatre is Renault’s first frameless vehicle and was born before World War II. It is also the first Renault to be produced when the brand’s Billancourt factory was rebooted after the war. This vehicle is the symbol of a time when France was lacking everything and most of all cars. It was purchased as humble help for a flurry of small crafts (boulanger, plumber, deliveryman) but was also used as improvised family car, making it the ancestor to the current Renault Kangoo.

Citroen SM Carburateur8. Citroen SM Carburateur

Aerodynamic, fast and nervous but also comfortable, enjoyable to drive with exemplary handling, the Citroen SM, introduced at the 1970 Geneva Auto Show, is one of the most prestigious cars in the history of automobile. It is the result of a collaboration between Citroen and Maserati (for the engine), this FWD model introduces the notion of “Grand Tourism”, enabling high speed driving at a security levels previously unknown for a series car.

Prototype Courreges Bulle9. Prototype Courrèges Bulle

Renault 4 Parisienne10. Renault 4 Parisienne