Remember the Renault 11? The topless car in A View to a Kill’and the French firm’s family car for pretty much the whole of the 80s.
Until this morning, I’d clean forgotten that in Electronic guise the car came with a quattro-style digital dashboard. I’d also forgotten that it also came with a talking dashboard, alerting you to such annoyances as the drivers door being left open, the hand brake being left on and low fluid levels.
Quite what Gene Hunt would have made of the car is anyone’s guess but I’m pretty sure a test drive would have resulted in a few choice words and fisty-cuffs with the hapless Renault salesman. No wonder he fired up the quattro.
This strangely amusing video gives a short look into the world of a Renault 11 driver. Figures from the early 80s suggest that suicide rates amongst Renault 11 drivers peaked during heavy rush hour periods.
For 2010, I’m thinking that a Renault 11 Electronic could make for an interesting episode of Top Gear. Lock James May in the car for an hour, ensure the doors are left ajar, drain all the fluids and remove the hand brake handle. Bet he wouldn’t last more than four minutes.
Also found this original TV ad from the 1980s. Comes from a totally different era. Couldn’t see “Fire up the Electronic” catching on though.
Update: 23rd April: The Hungarian owner of the Renault 11 Electronic video got in touch with PetrolBlog. See comments below, plus this 25th anniversary picture. Looks in fine condition.
Thanks to ati04 and HawklordPXR5 for the videos.