Friday, October 25, 2019

French Fried Cheeseburger: 1984 Renault Alliance

If you ask an automotive lovin' kid today what he/she thinks about the Renault Alliance, they'll probably tell you that Carlos Ghosn was framed, but Nissan should run as far away from the French automaker as possible..but if you ask an old seasoned car guy, he/she will regale you with stories of Franco-Merican build quality, MotorTrend's 1983 Car of the Year Award, and arriving at their final destination on foot. Or perhaps I'm being a bit hard on the little Kenosha, Wisconsin assembled french fry, maybe you could be that guy at the next Friday night car show.  Find this 1984 Renault Alliance offered for $1100 in Milford, CT via hemmings.  Tip from BP.

From the seller:
Location: MILFORD, Connecticut, 06460
VIN #: 1XMDC9638EK152758
Transmission: Auto
Condition: Fair
Exterior: Blue
Interior: Gray cloth

Seller’s Description:
For Sale: 1984 Renault Alliance L two-door sedan. Lost storage, must sell. Automatic transmission, fuel injected 1.4 liter four cylinder engine, factory a/c, power steering and brakes. New exhaust. Body good with no rust, undercarriage very clean, interior very nice, paint is faded. Good tires and brakes. Runs and drives well but engine has a rod knock and will need a rebuild or a replacement engine soon. Looking for a good home and someone who will finish the restoration I started. A/C all there but not working. This is too nice a car to sell for parts.

Price: $1,100 obo 

See a better way to drive an oddball?


  1. This is likely one of the slowest cars of 1984, and that's saying something.
    At the time a close friend had a Fuego (non-Turbo) and his mom drove an Alliance R/T, which was sporty-spec (5-spd, etc.). Good car, that RT version. Great fuel mileage...especially because said mom up-shifted at 1800rpm all the time. On my recommendation, my sister bought an automatic non-RT model. She called it The Appliance. It was a total lemon and she has been buying Japanese ever since. I should have advised her to get a Jetta.

    1. Apologies... the Alliance model was MT, for Motor Trend (car of the year, etc.).

      Note, it had 4-lug hubs. My pal's previous car was a ca. 1975 Renault R-17 Gordini, which still had 3-lug wheels!

    2. While the Jetta is a huge upgrade over an Alliance, she would have hated you when she got the bill for her timing belt service.

  2. On the strength of the Road & Track award, I bought one of these new in 1984 for my wife to drive. Hers had the manual transmission, which allowed the driver to get the most out of the car, but 0 to 60 times were still best measured with a sundial. I remember a disconcerting amount of body lean in the corners, rather like a sailboat. We didn't have it long, as it threw a rod through the block at 55,000 miles. Cured us of any further interest in French automobiles.

  3. It does have that gen en ce qui of looking like a generic car as drawn by a seven year old. Useful as a getaway car.

    Officer Bob: Did you get a good look at the getaway vehicle?
    Wittness: It was a car.
    Officer Bob: Can you describe what it looked like?
    Wittness: It looked like a car.
    Officer Bob: Any details stand out?
    Wittness: Well it had two doors and four wheels, not too big.
    Officer Bob: So you are saying it looked completely generic? - shows witness a photo of a Camey - Like this?
    Wittness: Oh no, that's a Camry. It didn't look like that, it was much more plain and it looked more like an average car.
    Officer Bob: ...

  4. Does anyone else remember these being offered as prizes on Hollywood Squares? As I recall, the contestant who won the preliminary rounds would go to the final round and play for the grand prize of a car. For a while, HS were giving away Renaults.

    The contestant would get to choose a set of keys randomly from a glass bowl (you know, like a swinger's party) and then would have to answer a final question or something. If they got it right, they got to pick one of the 5 cars and try to use the keys they chose to start it. There were 5 sets of keys in the bowl and 5 cars. If you chose the right keys, and the car started, you won the car. They likely gave away fewer Renaults because they probably didn't start even when new! Haha!

    There was also some way that the contestant could win all 5 of the cars I think, but my memory is too hazy to remember what that was. All I know is, I spent way too much of the 80s watching Hollywood Squares and dreaming of driving Renault Alliances.

    [image src="" width="400px"/]

  5. Let's try that again:
    [image src="" width="400px"/]

    If this doesn't appear, you can just copy/paste the url to see a picture of 5 Renaults on Hollywood Squares.

  6. Known as the Renault 9 in France. In France they were decent, but neither inspiring nor quirky. However, this example, with an automatic transmission and a rod knock is not really worth considering, even at that price.


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