Renault Dauphine

The Dauphine was launched in 1956 to replace the highly successful Renault 4CV. It was an automobile manufactured by the French manufacturer Renault from 1956 to 1962. A luxury version, which was badged the Renault Ondine, was also sold from 1960 to 1962. Further, two limited editions of the Dauphine that were tuned to get more power from the engine were released during its lifetime. The first was engineered by Renault performance guru Amedee Gordini. He went on to later produce high performance versions of the Renault 8, Renault 12 and Renault 15 among others. Anyhow, his version of the Dauphine was tuned to 37 hp and was sold as the Dauphine Gordini. The final run of the Dauphines, which were a limited edition of 1000 called the 1093, were similarly tuned to 55 hp and featured a twin barrel carburetor, rear track rods, five-speed manual transmission and tachometer. This special model had a top speed of 140 km/h. Further, the 1093 was only offered in white with two blue stripes down each side. Much like the 4CV, the Dauphine used a single-shell body. Further, it was a four-door sedan design like the 4CV, but it did not have the rear-hinged suicide doors of the 4CV. Additionally, it was heavier and 12 inches longer than its precursor, but used the same engine. The engine was though a version that was increased in size and power from 760 cc to 845 cc and 19 hp to 32 hp. Most cars are noted for being exceptionally fast, whereas the Dauphine was infamously slow. For example, Road & Track magazine measured the Dauphine's 0-60 mph acceleration time as 32 seconds. The Dauphine was originally intended to be called the Corvette, but was changed to Dauphine to avoid confusion with the recently launched Chevrolet Corvette. Funny thought, given the disparity in speed and performance.