This Renault 5 Turbo 1 is a captivating example of an iconic historic racer, which is understood to have been one of the Marlboro livery team cars as driven in the European Championship R5 Cup. Mounted amidships is the turbocharged 1.4-litre inline-four, teamed with a five-speed close-ratio manual transmission and – in this car – a Torsen differential. The odometer currently indicates 53,341 km (33,144 miles).

The vendor acquired the car seven years ago from a highly respected Dutch collector who explained that it was one of the original Marlboro R5 Turbo cars, despite being painted metallic black at the time. Soon after this, the black paint was stripped back, and parts of the original Marlboro livery finish were found beneath it. The vendor also liaised with McLaren to identify the correct paint with which to complete its original livery, as the colours as shared with the Marlboro McLaren Honda F1 cars. It was then treated to a comprehensive mechanical recommissioning.

While bidders may be more familiar Cevennes R5s and Group rally cars, these ‘pocket rockets’ also competed in the Renault 5 Turbo European Cup. This series followed the Formula One series on the continent, as well as the likes of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, introducing this characterful hot hatch to a much wider audience.

It is believed that this very car may have been campaigned in period by Boy Hayje, and there is a photo in the history file showing Hayje with a Marlboro team R5 Turbo. The vendor understands that three such cars were used by the team in period, driven by Hayje, Jan Lammers, and Alain Prost – though it is not possible to determine exactly who drove which car at which race, given that number plates are not on show during the racing. However, there is a photo among the paperwork showing a Marlboro car registered as ‘KS-97-BL’ dated to 1981, and original documentation confirming that this registration plate corresponds to chassis C0000751 – the car offered here.

During the refurbishment six years ago, when this Renault was given a fresh finish of the Marlboro livery, it was found to retain the original aluminium roof, doors and engine lid. Today, the paintwork presents superbly, having covered only 50 km in the dry and on road since the recommissioning process. It rides on a set of 13-inch Gotti wheels, which are in good order.

While the car would have been somewhat stripped out for the European Cup racing series, the vendor was informed that the carpets were refitted when the car was returned to road specification in the mid-1980s, and that at the same time the Turbo 1 black leather and striped cloth seats were also installed. A roll cage is also fitted. Overall, the interior presents in very good condition for its age, showing signs of use and patina, but no heavy wear or substantial damage. It arguably has the ambience of a highly original car. There are no known faults with any of the switchgear or electrics.

The vendor notes the car will have a fresh service following a successful auction, prior to handover to the next owner, and that it has required no major mechanical work since being recommissioned shortly after they acquired it. While the car is not UK registered, it has been put through an MOT test using the chassis number, which the vendor notes recorded no advisories or defects. The wheels come wrapped with Pirelli P6 tyres of unknown age, which are reported to be in fair condition.

Accompanying the car is a file of service history, as well as the aforementioned documentation that links this chassis number with registration ‘KS-97-BL’, and the photo showing Boy Hayje with an original Marlboro car. As it has been put through an MOT test, it could also be road registered in the UK should the next owner wish.

This Renault 5 Turbo 1 presents as a largely original car, which is understood to have been part of the Marlboro racing team in the early 1980s, and is furthermore believed to have been piloted by Boy Hayje in the European Cup – and possibly by Jan Lammers and Alain Prost as well. Still in excellent condition following the light refurbishment at the start of the current ownership, it could be enjoyed on the road once registered, or could even be reverted to a more race-ready specification. This is an iconic hot hatch that would make a storied addition to any collection.

The description of this auction lot is, to the best of the seller's knowledge, accurate and not misleading. Collecting Cars requests a range of detail about the lot from the seller, and performs a level of due diligence. However, bidders must satisfy themselves as to the accuracy of the description, and conduct any research they feel is necessary before committing to a bid. Please see our Terms and Conditions for full details.

As this car is not UK-registered, it cannot be run through Collecting Cars’ standard online HPI check process.

Car Overview

  • 53,341 km (33,144 miles)
  • manual
  • LHD
  • Marlboro Livery
  • Black leather / Pinstripe cloth
  • 1.4L
  • VINVF1822000C0000751

Lot Overview

  • Lot #02142
  • private Sale
  • Wargrave, Berkshire, United Kingdom


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