Yes, you can have fun with around 50 horsepower

Pick of the Day is a 1967 Gordini-tweaked Renault Dauphine

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Gordini-tweaked 1967 Renault Dauphine has performance upgrades

It may seem an oxymoron to mention “high performance” and the Renault Dauphine in the same sentence, but the Pick of the Day is, indeed, the high-performance version of the little French classic, a 1967 Renault Dauphine Gordini.

In fact, the dealer in Rockville, Maryland, advertising the car on ClassicCars.com claims this to be ‘the most original and the lowest mileage 1 owner Renault Dauphine ‘Gordini’ in the United States.”

The dealer notes that the Gordini package included 4-wheel disc brakes, a 4-speed manual transmission and “almost 50% more power.” In standard guise, the rear-mounted 845cc 4-cylinder produced 32 horsepower. Add half-again as much and you’re up to nearly 50 horsepower!

The upgrades were done by Amedee Gordini and his team. Gordini was born in Italy but married and lived in Paris. He raced in Grand Prix events and at Le Mans. Soon after World War II, he started producing his own line of race cars and then began doing high-performance modifications on various Renault products (he retired in 1968 and sold majoring interest in his own company to Renault).

“This Dauphine has been in a Florida garage most of its life, with only 27,364 original miles (around 500 miles per year!) and in exceptional show condition!” the dealer exclaims.

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The car has “mostly original” Kilimanjaro white paint and cranberry-red buck seats with white stitching. 

“Optional Panasonic period-correct removable AM/FM/MB stereo system is super cool and looks right at home,” the dealer adds.

The Renault is offered for $14,990. To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

11 COMMENTS

  1. When I was in high school (here in New Zealand) my English teacher had a standard Dauphine and I remember riding in it. My seat was in the back and I was about as big as I was ever going to get and folded up much more easily than l do now 45 years later. I succeeded in getting in back then but it wasn’t easy.I wouldn’t even try now.

  2. Hah! the dealer says most original. The rims for a start are not original, they may well be from a Renault 12 Circa 1970 or a Renault 16TL. Radio looks nothing like the period. Radios around that time were simple looking affairs with two knobs a face and that is all.
    Nice little car though but well overpriced.
    They were hardly a truly memorable thing.

    • Maybe the dealer means that most of the car is original – or possibly it’s the most original one you’re likely to find?
      Who cares? It looks great. If a serious buyer wants to quibble about the wheels or the radio, l guess that’s up to them.
      As for the price? There’s often a big difference between the asking price and the selling price. Again, that’s between the seller and a serious buyer.

  3. My sister bought a second hand Renault Gordini when she first began to teach. It was, as I recall, decent in the snow (we’re in Ontario) and, for the most part, reliable. On her drive home from work one day she was cut off, and ended up sliding into a utility pole. The car literally popped apart, and her last view of it was on the back of a wrecker heading for the recyclers.😎

  4. I had a Renault -Dauphine as one of my first cars .I bought it used and within a space of about 10 months , the heads on the engine warped twice .
    Renaults were not ever known to be a reliable , trouble free car .

  5. we had one when kids were little back in the mid 70s they loved to drive it around the field as it had push button trans had to put new clutch in the way it shifted was way cool ,

  6. Our Renault of Dayton (Ohio) ran ads (era late 60’s early 70’s) so bad that they actually sold some cars. The “pitch man” spoke in a mumbled southern accent and was completely serious. I think back on watching those ads and laugh….and every Renault I see in person or as here in photo’s I always think of old “Ken” what ever his last name was at “Renault of Dayton” (Remember….say that with a mumbled low tone mumbled southern accent). Oh…….he also pronounced “Renault” as we did in Ohio>>>Re-nalt………….not Re-know……………………..

  7. Had a Renault, in the early sixties. Northeast Ohio. Went well in the snow. Parts were impossible to find. To start when cold I had to stuff a rag in carb. Great gas mileage, over 30 miles to the gallon.

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