Yesterday the French police were revealed as Renault raiders and that got us thinking back to another sort of Renault Raider.
The 5 GT Turbo was a mighty performance supermini of the 1980s that’s just been voted one of the top 10 greatest hot hatches of all time by PHers. And the ultimate hot 5? The GT Turbo Raider.
This was a special final edition marking the model’s runout in 1990. For five years, it had been whizzing, whistling and failing to cleanly start when hot; by the 90s, the new Renault Clio loomed and a 1.4-litre turbo was old news: the Clio 16v’s 1.8-litre non-turbo multivalver was in.
Raider spec meant beautiful blue paint and matching painted alloys, sleeker black and blue interior and instant collectability. It even got an alarm as standard – no bad thing in the car-nicking, joyriding mania of the early 90s.
We still love it, and watch with envy as prices slowly start to skyrocket, particularly for the few standard ones left that haven’t been slammed and tuned up to 200hp.
And that’s why seeing headlines of the Renault raiders meant something different to us.