Bring a Trailer NO RESERVE auction preview: Charming and rare Renault Barchetta "Beach Car"
1950 Renault 4CV Legros Barchetta
VIN – 1464508
Engine No. – 1498114
Coachwork – Legros
Exterior Color – French Blue
Interior Color – Grey
Engine – 750cc inline 4-cylinder
Transmission – 4-Speed manual
Current Kilometers – 38,403 kms (TMU)
Produced by French car company Renault from 1947-1961. As a four-door sedan, these rear engine, rear drive cars were economical and easy to maintain, though dismal sales plagued the company at launch, sales would eventually reach over a million units throughout Europe. The monocoque construction, durable engine, tight steering radius, and economical costs of ownership endeared these cars to a wide range of markets including cabriolet models with a slide back canvas roof, a commercial-type service van, and Beach Wagon (Renault Jolly).
Among the most intriguing and captivating of the models derived from the 4CV series, Belgian Renault agent Legros commissioned a few specialized two-seat roadsters. Ideal as beach cars or shore town runabouts, the steel body used dipped down door openings eliminating heavy hinged doors and side glass. A shortened windscreen, and no side glass or convertible top provisions resulted in reduced weight for the 750cc engine. Given the rarity and complexity of construction for these limited market cars, surely very few were built with fewer remaining in complete and running condition as shown in this example.
History and Build Details of This Car
Although early history of this example is not known at this time, this car was purchased by the estate of the current owner in 2015. At that time, the car was offered with Italian registration documents having come out of an exclusive Italian collection which likely represents ongoing European ownership prior to being imported to North America after purchase in late 2015. Under current ownership, this car has been part of an extensive private family collection dedicated to unique and special bodied cars, performance cars, and European sports cars. Services performed on the car have been managed by inhouse mechanics.
Today this Renault Barchetta presents as a driver quality example ready for enjoyable use. The paint is glossy with excellent coverage over the hand formed steel body. Overall exterior finishes and trim are in very good condition including the headlights, taillights, and sporty fog lamps. With no doors or side glass, the interior is easily viewed, and the car can be easily entered since the overall height of the entry sill is quite low. The bumpers have been removed giving the car a sporty Barchetta appearance enhanced by the lowered windscreen, chrome plated bullet side view mirrors, and satin silver wheels. The front storage compartment is finished in satin black housing a 6-volt battery and offers space for weekend travel bags. The forward storage compartment is accessed by a centered chrome lever strip that latches and locks the hood in place. A similar smaller lever arm allows the rear engine lid to be unlocked and latched. A set of steel wheels are finished in satin silver wearing Firestone F560 tires.
The interior features grey vinyl seating for two and interior door panels with a driver’s side map pocket, rubber floor mat, and grey carpeting for the surprisingly spacious rear storage area behind the forward folding seats. The grey dashboard features a central mounted instrument cluster displaying just over 38,000 kms. Bucket seating for two is delightfully comfortable with a floor mounted 3-speed gear lever comfortably in reach.
The rear deck tapers back to a louvered rear-hinged engine lid housing a potent 750cc engine. Just forward of the engine lid, the radiator filler sits above the body surface topped with decorative trim. The engine is clean and well-maintained along with a tidy engine compartment. The engine and associated trim parts remain in very good condition overall, however the cooling system will need to be addressed as coolant is seeping from the water pump. The underside of the car is in generally good condition displaying essentially similar mechanical features consistent with stock 4CV platforms and rear engine driveline.
Driving this Renault 4CV, it’s clear that the 750 has surely been enhanced as it delivers a very nice exhaust note and moves the car along at a surprisingly healthy clip. Brakes and suspension are nicely matched, and the sportiness of the open configuration creates a memorable experience consistent with 750cc class sports cars from this era. This Renault 4CV offers a unique and charming entry to the world of French cars distinctly celebrating hand-built coachwork with enjoyable cosmetics and dynamic styling.
Items Included with the Car
This Renault 4CV is accompanied by a matching grey tonneau cover and misc. hardware.
The above vehicle information is complete and accurate to the best of our knowledge at the time it is posted to this website. Corrections or additional information is always appreciated. All advertised prices exclude government fees and taxes, any finance charges, any dealer document preparation charge, and any emission testing charge. Vehicles are subject to prior sale. All advertised to be true but not guaranteed. We assume no liability for errors or omissions.
Fantasy Junction • 510-653-7555 • 1145 Park Ave, Emeryville, CA 94608