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Categories: Tests

Renault 5 TL (1977) test: we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the R5 at the wheel!

In 2022, the Renault 5 celebrates its 50th anniversary! A story that Renault does not need to be asked to highlight these days. In particular, we had discovered a major exhibition on the occasion of Rétromobile earlier in the year, then a curious neo-retro concept, the R5 Diamant. But this time, there is no longer any question of going around the icon on the carpet: Renault entrusts us with a like-new copy of the R5 TL! Half a century later, what sensations does the chip provide on our modern roads? Discover our complete test of the Renault 5 TL in video :

The original Renault 5 is an icon. However, when it was launched in 1972, it did not bring anything particularly modern on the technical side. Everything is mainly derived from the rustic 4L : longitudinal engine and control box on the dashboard! But everything else is a mess. Starting with the look, minimalist but very pop, especially in this bright orange shade. The plastic bumpers look very modern at the time.

A very practical interior, a big argument at the time

And this is also the case of tailgate, a novelty at the beginning of the 1970s. Like the Twingo which took over in the 1990s, the R5 offers an exceptional size/livability ratio. The rear seat is roomy enough for adults, and it folds forward. The trunk of approximately 300 liters then becomes a real hold !

At the front, the presentation is simplistic but exudes the joy of living, even if this impression comes mainly from orange vinyl upholstery. Our R5 TL inherits the first dashboard, and the gear lever that comes out of it. The instrumentation is relatively complete, and the controls are intuitive even for those who don’t have the experience of the old ones. The seats are adjustable at the level of the seat and the backrest: it’s appreciable! Our TL version, the top of the range at launch, notably benefits froma heated rear windowside armrests in the front, or two-speed ventilation.

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Renault 5 TL: zen driving, very topical!

On the road, this almost 50-year-old quickly finds her bearings, and so does her driver. On this very well maintained model, driving is generally very easy to handle. The biggest marker of the age of this R5 remains the steering. Unassisted, it is mostly very blurry, and requires a lot of anticipation. Especially since the behavior is also quite dated, with very flexible suspensions which allow the body to pitch widely in the turns. But no one is looking for efficiency behind the wheel of a 50-year-old R5!

Despite its somewhat curious positioning today, the handling of the gear lever is very simple, especially since the reports are rather well locked. The fairly short box supports a 47 hp engine which is pleasantly flexible. In short, traffic on our modern roads is very good. We quickly find ourselves strolling, elbow to the door, far from the speed limit concerns…Which did not exist on the road when it was launched in 1972.

Read also :
– Volvo C40 Twin Charge test: an electric cut for the road?
– Mercedes EQE test (2023): an EQS at a discount?
Match: can the Mégane E-Tech compete against the Cupra Born?

Verdict: a nugget of French automobile history!

In short, you will have understood it, the Renault 5 is today an old one, certainly, but very approachable even without much experience of cars of that time. His rustic technique remains easy to grasp, and his presentation to the enormous capital of sympathy never ceases to bring smiles to its driver and passers-by. We understand all the better why Renault wishes to give it descendants in the coming years, even if modernity will not fail to make it lose some of its charm. The only real disappointment in this test: the rating of the beautiful R5s like this one, which can now fly away over €10,000…

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