Renault has entered four 8 Gordinis to partake in the Rallye Monte-Carlo Historique.
The 2017 Rallye Monte-Carlo Historique is just getting underway, with participants setting off from one of seven European start points – converging at Digne les Bains from 10:00am on Saturday, January 28 for the official start.
Renault has announced a factory-supported team of four 8 Gordini models. The teams are as follows:
Team 5: Manu Guigou/Jean-Pierre Prevot
Team 8: Jean Ragnotti /Sebastien Delanney
Team 12: Michel Leclere/Michel Duvernay
Team 14: Guillaume Chancel/François-Paul Forgeoux
The four 8 Gordinis will make the 1050km journey from the Barcelona start line, alongside a variety of other cars that have battled with the famous Monte Carlo Rallye of old. Cars privy to the Rallye have been hand picked to ensure the most eclectic range of makes and models will end up at the finish line on the southern coast of France.
Renault’s submission is a tribute to one of the French manufacturers most evocative models. A model born when an Italian, Amédée Gordini, brought a standard Renault 8 Major within the confines of his workshop and got to work, transforming this run-of-the-mill family car.
Uprated cylinder heads and a pair of Weber Carburetors alongside a hoard of other modifications sent 103bhp rearward through a four-speed manual transmission. The post-facelift 1255cc engine’s triple figure power output was impressive for 1966, especially when you consider the comparatively meager, standard 8 Major’s 43bhp.
The engine was not the sole recipient of Amédée’s handiwork. To make good on the enlarged power reserves the chassis was revised too. Upgraded steering and suspension hardware delivered composed and poised handling. While improvements to the braking system enhanced stopping power to complete well rounded performance revisions.
Of course the Gordini wasn’t to go without a visual makeover befitting of all the internal alterations. A blue paint finish was combined with a pair of white, offset racing stripes for a unique appearance, augmented by the yellow tinted, quad-headlamp arrangement for the full Va Va Voom vibe.
In 1966 the Gordini cup was introduced to earn its stripes in racing. It pioneered one-make race series and claimed victories in a multitude of racing events, securing its status as one of the great Renaults.
Words: Lee Stern