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Renault 16 (1965)

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Renault 16 - Front Angle, 1965, 1 of 1

Renault 16

The Renault 16 was an executive car produced by French manufacturer Renault between 1965 and 1980 in Sandouville, Le Havre, France.

The R16 was voted European Car of the Year by a board of European motoring journalists in 1966. Over 1,845,959 R16s were produced during the model's lifetime.

In the autumn of 1965, Renault launched one of the world's first hatchbacks - a halfway move between a saloon and estate bodystyle which would eventually become the most popular car bodystyle in the world.

It sold well in most of Europe, winning praise for its spacious and comfortable interior. Equipment levels were also high for the price. Initially, Renault sold the R16 with just a 1.4 L gasoline engine in GL specification; then followed the 1.6 L TS which could top 100 mph. The top-line model was the TX, which was launched in 1973 and had a 5-speed manual transmission. Equipment included power windows and central door locking, features previously unknown on family cars in Europe.

Production of the Renault 16 lasted until 1980 when it was finally replaced by the less successful Renault 20. Even by this stage, when it was nearly 15 years old, the Renault 16 was still one of the most popular and highly rated family cars on sale in Europe. Current Renault styling chief Patrick le Quement has made no secret his admiration for the R16 - and incorporated a subtle tribute to its "bird-beak" grille in the corporate look he devised for many of the models (Laguna, Mégane, Scénic) that the company launched in the 1990s.

By the time the Renault 16 ceased production most other European manufacturers had at least one hatchback on sale, with the idea just starting to rub off on Asian and American makers. The most significant hatchbacks influenced by the Renault 16 between 1965 and 1979 include the following: Austin Maxi (1969), Fiat 127 (1971), Peugeot 104 (1972), Volkswagen Golf (1974), Chrysler Alpine (1975), Opel Kadett City (1975), Rover SD1 (1976), Ford Fiesta (1977), and the Chrysler Horizon (1977).

Renault 16 (1965)

1965 Renault 16

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from Wikipedia.

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