a showcase for the forgotten orphan of France

last updated December 29, 1996

Welcome to the RENAULT DAUPHINE Stories Page. If any of you Dauphine owners (or former owners) would like to share your stories with the world, you can e-mail them to Charles D. Hunter at

Our first story comes from Nils Lagergren of Sweden. He writes:

I live in Stockholm Sweden, and have had a Dauphine since 1989. It's a R1090 -62.I am the third owner. Last year I restored it, and went for a summerholidaytrip in former DDR, with three friends of mine. Naturally we were dressed in a 60's way, and had all our luggage in old trunks on the roof. The little Dauphine made a success wherever we went. In one little village, a crowd even applauded us as we went by. In Leipzig the ignition-key was broken (due to old age), so we had to "re-wire" the ignition a little and install a "on/off"-button. From then on you start the car by pressing the button! Ingenious, n'est-ce pas?

Best regards
Nils Lagergren
(reached on my girlfriend's E-mail:

Our second story comes from Nicolas Vitry of France. He writes:

I live in Paris, France and have a Dauphine R1090 of March 1957 I promise you a lot of detail of my model... So, this is a sunshine roof Dauphine with a beautiful sage green colour (#988 of Renault). There's some accessories like wire's hub caps, or Saprar moulding and a very good original Philips radio! When I bought it, last October in the North of France, the last owner gave me its original Dauphine handbook! Seats was protected with plastic covers, under these the texture was unused!
I'm member of two clubs :
- C.A.R. Ile-de-France : Official Renault owners.
- Dauph'stock : There is only owner of Dauphine, Gordini, Ondine, Floride, 1093... Only lovers and fanatics of our beautiful «Crownprincess». Do not hesitate to contact our best president Mister Goemaere (59 rue Pruvost - 59940 Neuf-Berquin - France)
We celebrate the 40th birthday of the Dauphine at Lomme (near Lille, North of France) the 20th and 21th of April and we will follow the 8th and 9th June at Verdun (East of France).800 oldies (but goodies) was there !!

Dauphinely yours

Nicolas VITRY -

Our third story comes from William Matrisciano of the United States. He writes:

I couldn't believe that I actually found this site. I just had to write a short note. My very first car back in 1968 was a 1960 cream colored Renault Dauphine. Everybody else was buying American muscle cars. It was a great time in my life cruising in that car. I can almost still smell it's interior.
The engine was a great pain at first, but after a new timing gear (which I installed myself) and a new distributor, it ran great. I learned to drive a stick on that car. It was one of the most difficult things I learned, but I really loved that car and I perservered so that I could drive it.
I always puzzled how to get a picture of one, and now through the internet, I can re-live that great time of my life.
Thanks for the site.
William Matrisciano

Our fourth story comes from Claude Sauvageon of France. He is a friend of Nicolas Vitry (see above):

Hello, I live near Paris in France, and have a Renault Dauphine R1090 of June 1963. This car is particular because it was a racing car in the seventies. When Renault stopped the fabrication of the Dauphine in December 1967 a lot of these cars has been transformed by their owners for rallies or others races. My Dauphine is a kind of " muscle car made in France ". The specifications are :
- Engine : Gordini Alpine-Renault 1300 cm3 (120 HP), Normal operating temperature 90 , 7000 RPM maximum (even more!)
- Alpine Gearbox (5 speeds, ratio 8x33), Alpine brakes 1600 gr 4
- Alpine front pace with negative scrub steering geometry...
(you can join me at my friend's e-mail (Nicolas Vitry) :

Our fifth story comes from Anne L. Schleck of the United States. She has a story about her first Dauphine and some water pump problems:

In my 1959 Dauphine the water pump broke twice. Each time the whole front of the engine had to be removed, part by part in order to access the water pump and repair it. This was costly . The water pump was only about $20 but the labor was about $120. Escept for this I liked my Dauphine very much. It always got up the steep hill I lived on with no difficulty and no snow tires. I kept it until I traded it for a 1965 Chevrolet Chevelle. My Dauphine was red.

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