1000 Finarte / Classic Cars

Brescia, Monday 13 May 2019


1948 Renault 4CV (Renault)

Chassis no. R10601401230

  • Mille Miglia Eligible.· A car for the Mille Miglia, while having a modest purchase price and running costs.
  • Rare in Italy.
  • Excellent general condition.
  • Documents in order.


€ 12.500 - 15.000

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The Model

The 4CV was conceived during the Second World War, in absolute secrecy, in the Renault plants manned by the German army. The car had to replace the Juvaquatre, but be cheaper: hard times were foreseen when the conflict ended. The project was entrusted to the young engineer Fernand Picard, supervised by Charles-Edmond Serre, with a team of trusted collaborators. The first prototype, in 1942, had a line very similar to the newly introduced German Beetle. Only in 1944 was a second prototype made, which prefigured the final car. After the liberation of Paris, Louis Renault was imprisoned on charges of collaborating with the enemy and died shortly after. This led to the rise of Pierre Lefaucheux to the helm of the company, the nationalization of the same and the birth of the Régie Nationale des Usines Renault. Lefaucheux challenged the French industrial production ministry of the period that, by implementing the so-called "Pons Plan", which required a rationalization of productivity, they were seeking to convert Renault to the production of trucks alone. In 1946, a specimen of 4CV pre-series was presented at the 33rd Paris Motor Show. The public was captured by the small car that presented a practical four-door solution: a rarity at the time, for a car of this category. The 4CV became one of the symbolic models of the French revival. For the start of production, it was necessary to wait almost a year, for reasons strictly linked to the reconstruction and shortage of raw materials. The first example came out of the Billancourt plant on August 12, 1947. The 4CV offered rounded shapes that contributed to a reduced coefficient of aerodynamics, for the time, of 0.38. The rear of the car was characterized by a large engine cooling area. The interior appeared “functional” but its contents were interesting: among them a device called "commodo", a multi-function lever on the side of the steering column. The arrangement with rear engine and traction led to an unbalanced distribution of the weight, but the car's performances were "low" with a maximum speed of around 100 km/h and did not generate problems. The structure had a supporting body with independent suspension on the two axles. The engine was a water cooled 4-cylinder in-line 760 cc, side camshaft for a maximum power of 17 hp. The gearbox was a manual 3-speed. At its debut, the 4CV was offered in two versions: the Normal and the Commercial, a variant for freight transport. From the beginning, the Régie encountered difficulties in processing orders due to their huge numbers and waiting times were extended to one year. During 1948 the first updates appeared: the rear sliding windows were added and the rod-shaped direction indicators were moved to the rear uprights. In 1949, the range of the 4CV sedan split into two versions: Normal and Luxe. Production continued, with regular updates, until 1961.The 4CV is one of the protagonists of the French motor sport of the immediate post-war period. The car shone in the major automotive competitions of the time, triumphing in its category in events such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans or the Monte Carlo Rally. At the Mille Miglia it was driven by a young Jean Rédélé, future founder of Alpine. Despite the successes, the 4CV was penalized by its displacement of 760 cc, unfavorable compared to the direct rivals in the category between 751 and 1100 cc. For this reason, in 1950, the engine was reduced to 747 cc. Other class victories took place in the 1952, 1954 and 1956 editions of the Liege-Rome-Liege, the Tour de France of 1952 and 1953, as well as the editions 1952, 1953, 1954 and 1959 of the Mille Miglia. The 4CV also saw some category victories by female drivers, such as the 1952 Sanremo Rally.

The car 

The Renault 4CV, chassis no. R10601401230, is according to its booklet from 1948 and mounts the correct “662/1” 760cc engine. However, it seems to be a model produced in 1950. It has, in fact, all the features of the Luxe version which has been officially marketed since 1949 with a more refined finish and more complete equipment. In particular, the Luxe was fitted with a more elegant cream-colored steering wheel, windows with deflectors, an anti-theft device, two ashtrays, an internal ceiling light and bumpers with bolts. The chassis number would correspond, according to the Renault tables, to a vehicle produced in 1950. Imported from France, where it had plates of the Haute Loire department (74) and registered in Italy in 2012, it has documents in order and up to date ASI certificate. The car has been restored, the bodywork and mechanics are in very good general condition and its interiors have been redone. The car is eligible for the Mille Miglia and is one of the most "accessible" cars for purchase and running costs, with which to participate in the Brescia race and the most important historical re-enactments, thanks to the model's sporting past. Comfortable, despite its small size, and easy to handle. The model is now rare.

State of the Art: Restored, bodywork and mechanics generally in very good condition, interior redone.


  • Patrick Lesueur, Dominique Pascal, Renault 4CV, L’Autodrome Editions, Francia 2009.-Pierre Dumont, Renault (tutta la storia), Automobilia, Milano 1982

Certifications and Statements

Registration and Italian license plates in order and update.


  • Mille Miglia. Eligible. 
  • Giro di Sicilia. Eligible.
  • Targa Florio. Eligible.
  • Goodwood Revival. Eligible.
  • Rallye Monte-Carlo Historique. Eligible
  • Tour Auto. Eligible.
  • Le Mans Classic. Eligible.
  • Coppa d’Oro delle Dolomiti. Eligible.
  • Vernasca Silver Flag. Eligible.
  • California Mille: Eligible.
  • Nürburgring Classic. Eligible.
  • Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Eligible.
  • Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. Eligible.
  • Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille. Eligible.
  • Concorso d’eleganza Villa D’Este. Eligible.



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