Planning a vacation for the near future? Paris is always a solid choice, and if you’re looking to bring back a souvenir with you, we might suggest the hot hatch you see here.
It’s a Renault 5, which in and of itself would be nothing special. But this is a R5 Turbo, one of the most extreme hot hatches ever devised by the French (or anyone else for that matter).
Turbo version of the model sold in the US as “Le Car” packed a 1.4-liter force-fed four good for 160 horsepower. That may not seem like so much now, but bear in mind that the Volkswagen GTI of its day offered only 90 hp. What really set the R5 Turbo apart, though, was its layout: where most hot hatches retain the front-engine/front-drive setups of their donors, the Renault put the engine (and driven wheels) in the back.
Pictured here is a rather pristine Turbo II from 1983 with only 5,900 kilometers (<3,700 miles) on the clock. It’s black and white on the outside with a custom black leather interior, and could very well be the finest example you’ll ever come across.
It’s going up for auction on February 8 at Place Vauban in the French capital during the Rétromobile show. RM Sotheby’s also has consigned for the same event a rally version of the same, homologated to Group 4 and Group B specifications. It’s one of only 20 factory “Tour de Corse” examples, and is even more extreme with 220 horsepower on tap and all the competition-spec goodies for hitting the vintage rally scene.