Welcome to a new test of classics. As we speak we have now with us the legendary Renault 5 GT Turbo. We’re in Asturias and we’re going to test this lovely unit. We not solely wish to clarify why the Supercinco GT Turbo was one of the biggest exponents of the GTi of the eighties, we wish to inform you why each compact and sport utility car has a bit of this GT Turbo of their DNA. And as soon as and for all, we’re going to dismantle the fable of “the turbos that jumped in the center of the curve”.
The Renault 5 GT Turbo was not the first trendy sports activities utility. That honor goes to the Volkswagen Golf GTI, however the Supercinco GT Turbo was one of people who most contributed to popularizing turbocharged mechanics in the phase, which skilled its golden period in the second half of the eighties. Its predecessor, the Renault 5 Copa Turbo, is taken into account the first sport utility with a turbo engine. Its rudimentary engine and explosive power-to-weight ratio earned it a popularity as a harmful automotive.
The Renault 5 GT Turbo was launched on the market in 1985.
Fame that the mid-engined Renault 5 Turbo made positive to cement with its participation in rallies in the first half of the eighties. The legendary “fats ass” has already handed via the Diariomotor channel, by the approach. Along with contemporaries and rivals resembling the Fiat Uno Turbo or the Peugeot 205 GTi, they inaugurated one of the most longed-for eras in the automotive world, the period of the “little GTIs”Inexpensive, highly effective sports activities vehicles, and most of all, nice enjoyable.
Let’s analyze intimately, now, the Supercinco.
Design of the Renault 5 GT Turbo
The very first thing that stands out is how small the R5 GT Turbo is in comparison with any present automotive. A contemporary Renault Clio is 4.05 meters lengthy. This R5 measures solely 3.59 meters, 2 centimeters greater than a Fiat 500. Its design, born from the pencil of Marcello Gandini, creator of vehicles like the Lamborghini Countach or the R5 Turbo “fats ass”, is probably one of the most consultant and iconic of the eighties. Most of the GT Turbos offered had been white, and the undeniable fact that it’s yellow provides an much more unique contact to this unit, which is virtually museum in situation.
We begin from the entrance. We love the uneven Renault emblem, launched in 1987 with the facelift of the Supercinco, often known as “Part 2” in our nation. That face raise didn’t alter the attribute sq. headlights of the R5, however it did introduce this bumper, painted in the physique shade and with a extra aggressive design. From its lateral profile it’s value highlighting some widened wheel arches.
At the time, and likewise now, he felt far more muscular than a regular Tremendous 5. It was Four cm decrease than a typical R5, and nonetheless, it seems to be like a “tall” automotive. by at the moment’s requirements. I additionally wish to cease at these rims, 13-inch diameter and roads with 175 mm part tires. As we speak we aren’t shocked to see small GTIs with 18-inch 235mm diameter wheels, however take into account that this was actually sporty footwear at the time.
Earlier than transferring to the rear, have a look at this profile, so loaded with straight strains, and so loaded with persona, and with that 80s vinyl that claims “GT Turbo”. Why have trendy vehicles gotten so severe? Maybe from behind the GT Turbo was extra much like different Supercinco, aside from the bumper and a small emblem. Nonetheless, and solely in Spain, all the GT Turbo had this gigantic vinyl that remembered that it was not simply any R5.
Inside of the Renault 5 GT Turbo
I do know you wish to see if the turbo jumps in the center of the curve, however don’t be impatient. Sitting inside the Supercinco is touring 35 years again in time, Each as for effectively and for worse. It strikes me, first of all, that regardless of being a small and slender inside, the feeling of area is spectacular. And it’s that the design of the dashboard, and above all, the big glazed space of the automotive, they provide us a visibility that no trendy automotive can match. Now we have misplaced a lot on this regard with the evolution of vehicles …
From this inside we wish to spotlight, first of all, these particular seats, with a little extra lateral help, however considerably mushy and with few petals beneath present requirements. The steering wheel doesn’t have an airbag, it’s wrapped in perforated leather-based, and it was particular to this model. In the instrumentation, the speedometer reached 220 km / h (do you keep in mind what impressed this years in the past?), And a small stress gauge signifies the turbo’s blowing stress. I do miss, sure, a stress gauge for the oil temperature.
There may be nothing particular about the relaxation of the dashboard, the simplicity of which is past query. Catches my consideration the size of the gear stick and the simplicity of all the controls. All in all, that is a automotive from the eighties, and it’s not as spartan or primary as different classics which have handed via the canal.
The center of the GT Turbo
You had been trying ahead to it. And it’s that in a automotive like this, the rear seats or the trunk are very secondary. An important factor about the GT Turbo is, with out a doubt, its coronary heart. Athough it doesn’t appears, the block design of this 1,397cc engine dates again to the period of the Renault 4, and is an evolution of the Renault 5 Copa Turbo engine. Nonetheless, there are basic variations in its operation, and we are able to contemplate it the first trendy turbo engine from Renault.
Its engine was of rods and rockers, with solely two valves per cylinder. Rudimentary even in the eighties.
This propellant, in Part 2, it developed 120 hp and a torque of 165 Nm at 3,750 rpm. Mounted in a automotive weighing simply 855 kilos, it supplied spectacular efficiency (0-100 in 7.eight seconds and greater than 200 km / h in rush). Remember the fact that the most simple Renault 5 barely developed 50 HP of energy. However we’ll discuss that as we drive it. In the Superfive already was mounted in a transverse place – as in any trendy automotive – and the air was compressed by a water-cooled turbocharger, an enchancment launched in Stage 2 that prevented issues with scorching begins, and supplied larger reliability.
Not like in the Turbo Cup, a far more rudimentary automotive, the air was compressed earlier than passing via the carburetor, to be blended with the gas. It ought to be remembered that this isn’t an injection engine, and regardless of being a comparatively automotive Not too long ago, the two valves per cylinder had been pushed by rods and rocker arms, a know-how already archaic in the eighties. The ability was transmitted to the floor via a very tight five-speed handbook gearbox. Now it’s time to strive it.
At the wheel of an icon of the eighties: will we “bounce the turbo”?
First, let’s dismantle, as soon as once more, the fable of why the turbo “jumped” in the center of a curve. All the myths have a small half of actuality, and that’s that in the Renault 5 Copa Turbo, the air was blended with the gas, after which it was compressed by the turbo. This, coupled with rudimentary ignition system and an out-of-point carburetorNot solely did it trigger a large lag, however the turbo was not too quick to cease blowing, as soon as we took our foot off the accelerator.
Why then was it stated that the turbo jumped in the center of the curve? Amongst different issues, attributable to this delay in energy supply, which may trigger some drivers on the free foot to press the accelerator greater than mandatory, and particularly, from my level of view, as a result of of drivers unaccustomed to such highly effective and quick vehicles. If we add to this the high quality of the tires of the time … we are able to suspect why this automotive was dubbed “the sucker.”
The celebrity of the “bouncing turbo” additionally had the GT Turbo, however in fact, it’s a extra civilized automotive than it appears. The delay in energy supply continues to draw consideration, however as soon as the turbo is blowing, this automotive turns into a little rocket. He walks a lot, and he walks a lot because of a actually low weight. At the time, a Golf GTI was not solely heavier, it was additionally much less highly effective.
I really like the steering really feel, direct and unassisted. I really like the husky and characterful sound of its engine. The change has comparatively lengthy travels and a lever that appears like that of a van, however it isn’t sluggish or has an disagreeable contact, along with having a mechanical contact, which completely matches the racing character of the automotive. It jogs my memory a bit to the contact of some PSAs from the nineties, and I don’t imply it as one thing pejorative.
However with out a doubt I’ll stick to the agility and liveliness of the chassis. This automotive appears to fully lack understeer, and the rear helps us to spherical the curves naturally if we launch the accelerator – sure, it’s handy to anticipate with the fuel to offer time for the turbo to blow once more with power. It might be a considerably nervous automotive to the restrict, however we aren’t going to hunt that restrict with this unit in collector’s situation.
Conclusions and farewell
The Renault 5 GT Turbo was changed by the Renault Clio 16v, and for the subsequent twenty years, nearly all sport utility automobiles and compacts would swap to naturally aspirated engines and multi-valve cylinder heads. Nonetheless, time proved that the Renault 5 GT Turbo components was the best suited. Automobiles like the Ford Fiesta ST or the Hyundai i20 N show that turbo know-how is the current and the future of little GTIs – no less than till all of them go electrical.
In the meantime, we are going to proceed to take pleasure in these gems of mechanics. The GT Turbo is an thrilling, quick, enjoyable automotive that exudes persona. It was a tremendously well-liked automotive and was one of the vehicles that contributed the most to democratizing excessive efficiency, because of a very reasonably priced worth. And with out it, you wouldn’t have the ability to perceive at the moment’s sport utility automobiles and compacts.