Renault 4CV - Broadening The Range Downmarket

Broadening The Range Downmarket

Early in 1953 the manufacturer launched a stripped-down version of the 4CV bereft of anything which might be considered a luxury. Tire width was reduced, and the dummy grille was removed from the front of the car along with the chrome headlamp surrounds. The seats were simplified and the number of bars incorporated in the steering wheel reduced from three to two. The only colour offered was grey. The car achieved its objective of retailing for less than 400,000 Francs. With the Dauphine already at an advanced stage of development it may have made sense to try and expand the 4CV's own market coverage downwards in order to open up a clearer gap between the two models which would be produced in parallel for several years, but reaction to the down-market 4 CV, branded as the "Renault 4CV Service", must have disappointed Renault as this version of the car disappeared from the Renault showrooms after less than a year. The poor sales performance of the stripped-down "4CV Service" may have been linked to the growing popularity of the Citro├źn 2CV: although at this stage powered by an engine of just 375 cc and offering sclerotic performance, the 2CV was bigger than the Renault and in 1952 came with a starting price of just 341,870 francs.

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