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French classics are often small and inexpensive – yet amazingly chic – cars with a slightly different approach to technical solutions. Need I mention the 2CV? But think also of the original Renault 5 or the 4CV which came before it. Cute little Peugeot 204’s or some of those early Simca 1000’s. But the French do luxury too.

I suppose the Citroen DS is arguably the most successful and widely acclaimed luxury car ever to come out of France. But there are plenty others. Personally I’ve always had a weak spot for the big and overly square-cut Peugeot 604. Well, this week’s Prime Find of the Week was Renaults period competitor to the 604. The Renault 20 and 30 were launched in 1975, and was a brand new construction and design, in an attempt to take on a market segment which Renault hadn’t really taken part in since their Frégate went out of production in 1960.

If only Renault had dared stick to this early design sketch!

The range-topping Renault 30 was the first car to use the 2.7 litre V6 PRV engine developed in conjunction with Peugeot and Volvo. Initially the engine in the 30TS was feed through carburettors, but by late ’78 the new 30TX received fuel injection bumping the output up by 14HP to 144HP. Alongside the lower spec 4-cylinder R20 which shared the same body, the model soldiered on until 1983, by which time Renault had produced approximately 622,000 R20’s and 145,000 luxurious R30’s.

The big rear hatch was not particularly popular in the luxury car segment at the time, but does no doubt add practicality to the design.

This particular Renault 30TX from 1980 has only been back on the road for a few years after having spent several years in storage. It’s still not perfect, as the automatic gearbox struggles to engage first gear when cold. The seller suggests that an oil change might solve the issue, and also adds that a spare recon gearbox will also come with the car. It’s no doubt a car which would benefit from a little tlc, but it does nonetheless come with a current MOT until Feb. 2018. While any prospective buyer should obviously make his way to Sussex, UK to inspect the car thoroughly in the flesh, the pictures seem to show a car with good bodywork and a clean underside. The silver exterior colour is perhaps not the most exciting, as I would have preferred to see something a little more period funky such as bronze metallic or green metallic, but at least the luscious blue velour seats make up for it with their pure late-70’s vibe, and they even appear to be remarkably well preserved. With an asking price of £1595, French luxury just doesn’t come any cheaper than this rarity. As an added bonus, you’re highly unlikely to ever meet another on the road, or park next to one at any classic car show.

Theses are some of the rather small pictures from the advert:

Here’s the link to the advert on Car and Classic:


With our Saturday instalment of Prime Find of the Week, we’re offering our services to the classic car community, by passing on our favourite classic car for sale from the week that passed. This top-tip might help a first-time-buyer to own his first classic, or it could even be the perfect motivation for a multiple-classic-car-owner to expand his garage with something different. We’ll let us inspire by anything from a cheap project to a stunning concours exotic, and hope that you will do the same.
Just remember – Any Classic is Better than No Classic! We obviously invite our readers to help prospective buyers with your views and maybe even experiences of any given model we feature. Further to that, if you stumble across a classic which you feel we ought to feature as Prime Find of the Week, then please send us a link to

2 Responses

  1. Anders Bilidt

    The SM is no doubt a thoroughly stylish and very high-end French luxury car.
    But it’s also in a very different price league from a R30…


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