1981 Renault 5

R5 Turbo 1 Kit CEVENNES


  • Year of manufacture 
  • Mileage 
    38 376 km / 23 846 mi
  • Car type 
  • Chassis number 
  • Reference number 
  • Drive 
  • Condition 
    Original Condition
  • Interior colour 
  • Number of doors 
  • Number of seats 
  • Location
  • Exterior colour 
  • Gearbox 
  • Performance 
    200 PS / 148 kW / 198 BHP
  • Drivetrain 
  • Fuel type 


Jean Terramorsi was a Renault vice-president in charge of small series production during the late 1970s. He conceived a brilliant way to take on the new generation mid-engined rally car while staying true to the French manufacturer's production models. He started with the Renault 5 supermini, turned the drivetrain around 180 degrees and mounted the now turbocharged engine where the rear seat of the production car would have been. The result was dubbed the Renault 5 Turbo and first shown to the public at the 1978 Paris Auto Salon in concept form. Terramorsi never saw his vision become reality as he had passed away in 1976.

It was, of course, not quite that straightforward as at least 400 examples of the new car had to be built to homologate the car for Group 4 competition use. However, by using many off the shelve components, the car could be made available for public sale at a relatively modest price while offering supercar like performance. While the production version of the Renault 5 Turbo was being readied, one of the prototypes, developed by Alpine, already saw action in the Group 5 class. Among the most notable results was a win in the Critérium des Cévennes, where a Lancia Stratos was beaten.

In charge of the development of the car were engineers Francois Bernard and Bernard Tetu, who were also involved in the company's Formula 1 program. Although the new rally car was based on the Renault 5 monocoque, there was considerable room to fit a spectacular bodykit in order to clear the wider wheels. At the rear, these massive fender flares also served to provide the mid-mounted engine with fresh air. Based on a standard production unit, it featured a Garrett turbocharger and displaced just 1,397 cc. Taking the 1.4 equivalency factor into account, this meant the 5 Turbo could run in the under two-litre class.
Production of the road-going Turbo 5 commenced in 1980 and the first 400 examples were built by September of that year. This allowed the competition car, aptly dubbed the 'Cevennes', to compete in the Group 4 class. The car's World Championship debut came at the Rallye Monte Carlo early in 1981. Jean Ragnotti took an impressive win, and affirming the compact Renault's reputation as a tarmac specialist, he also won the Tour de Corse in 1982. Meanwhile, the road-legal cars were in high demand and as many as five were built per day. In 1983, the Turbo 2 was released, which less exotic steel body panels but more power.

For the newly introduced Group B class, the 5 Turbo was further developed and the 'Tour de Corse' model was introduced in 1983. Like its Group 4 predecessor, it was best suited to tarmac rallies as the four-wheel drive rivals proved superior on looser surfaces. Although numerous victories were scored in national events, the best placing in World Championship rallies was a third in the 1984 Tour de Corse. The ultimate development came in the form of the 'Maxi' developed ahead of the 1985 season. It featured a wider body and larger engine, which sported an innovative anti-lag system. Fittingly, it would score a win in the Tour de Corse rally on the 5 Turbo's favoured tarmac.

Production of the road-going 5 Turbo would continue through to 1986 in Renaults French and Belgian factories. Of the road cars only the first 400 were produced by Alpine and these slightly more exotic homologation specials formed the basis for all the competition cars. Eventually close to 5,000 examples were produced, underlining just how brilliant Terrarmorsi's original idea was. The mid-engined hatchback was revived by Renault in the late 1990s with the Clio V6 but this was no rival on the road or track for the original 5 Turbo.

The Car for sale here is an original R5 Turbo 1 "Cevennes". First registered in June 1981 in France and still on French registration.
The car was stored for a long time in a dry garage - photos still existing. The last owner took the car back to life and it's still totally original but in very good mechanical and optical condition. The milage is just 38.376 KM.

One of the rare opportunities to get an unmodified original Renauld 5 Turbo 1 Cevennes!