The Voiture – 1982 Renault Le Car

As it is somewhere in the vast unwritten RustyButTrusty mission to catalog the majority of the Alfettas on the market, so it is too for Renault’s LeCar. And thank goodness it’s an attainable goal, unlike covering something as common as the Alfa Romeo 164. And for something that was considered a throwaway car by some many people, it’s interesting to see there are a couple each year in very good condition. Another bright note is these were never sold with an automatic transmission – probably part of the key to their demise here – so you won’t get lumbered with a gorgeous survivor running an underdeveloped/slow/recalcitrant drivetrain. Check out this 1982 Renault LeCar for sale for $4000 in New Milford, NJ.

1982 Renault Le Car right front

Sorry, west coast audience, this one’s on the other side of the country. By the condition, you wouldn’t expect it – the seller offers several under-carpet shots that show gleaming red paint with a complete absence of corrosion. Who buys a slightly offbeat econobox and puts it away every winter? Thank you, unsung hero. It has had one repaint in the original color, and only shows 73K miles, so bring a magnet, but the signs are good.

1982 Renault Le Car left rear

The seller sounds friendly enough in the description, and gives a little bit of information about what’s been done, including a new battery, and troubleshooting many small issues. It’s now said to be a pleasure to drive and to get a fair bit of attention. The car actually looks cleaner without the common LeCar decals on the door bottoms, and while the seller says it has a matching set of tires, there’s no indication of their age.

1982 Renault Le Car interior

Apparently, the cloth interior was replaced with black vinyl – painful in the summer, but more durable. With the red accents, the black looks really smart, and who knew you could still find a LeCar with an uncracked dash and such a clean interior. That vertically mounted radio is a great place to spill your venti latte or your hamburger’s juices, but since you’ll be busy driving and keeping the 51hp 1.4-liter engine on the boil, you won’t have time for eating.

1982 Renault Le Car engine

What you can see of the engine is decent looking, though why you’d get rid of the large, stock air filter for this tiny little thing that sucks the warm air under the hood is a mystery – with only 51hp, you don’t want to lose a single horsepower more. The spare looks to be the original Michelin X, which is cool, but useless if you actually have a flat. Overall this looks like a fun, sorted runabout, and with the relatively long wheelbase, it might even make for a good car to go away for the weekend, if you don’t mind keeping it under 70. What other cars can you think of that have an underhood spare?

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2 Responses to “The Voiture – 1982 Renault Le Car”

  1. MountainMan Says:

    Nice example of a le car.
    The ’80s Subaru GL also has the under the hood spare.

  2. pickles Says:

    The LeCar, today, is easily the rare-est of Renaults, state-side. I’ve been hunting for a decent one for years. This looks exceptional but I’m betting it was without the necessary fold back sunroof.

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