Offered by Brightwells | Online | February 13-18, 2020
The GTA was the first “Alpine” that was technically branded as a Renault product. Alpine become the model, as this was the first new Alpine model launched after Renault acquired Jean Rédélé’s company in 1973. The GTA went on sale in 1985 and was built through 1991.
There were a number of different sub-models offered, including a base, naturally aspirated version. There was also a Le Mans model, an example of which we have featured before. By 1990, the car had been fitted with power-robbing emissions equipment, and this V6 Turbo model is powered by a, you guessed it, turbocharged 2.5-liter V6 rated 182 horsepower. Sixty arrived in seven seconds, and the car topped out at 151 mph.
This car has aftermarket wheels that make it look like a Venturi, and it is expected to sell for between $10,000-$13,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Mecum | Glendale, Arizona | March 18-20, 2021
This site doesn’t feature too many post-war German cars, but people love BMW’s 2002. The name was a little short-sighted, but I guess they never imagined having to try and Google “BMW 2002” only to get a ton of results for 2002 325Cis.
The 2002 was mixed in with a number of other visually similar but mechanically different models, including the 1602, 1802, 1502, 1600, and 1800. The 2002 went on sale for the 1968 model year and would be offered in base, cabriolet, ti, and tii forms through 1976. There was one model that topped all of those, and it was the Turbo, which was sold between 1973 and 1975. Only 1,672 examples were produced.
It was BMW’s first turbocharged production car and features a turbocharged, fuel-injected 2.0-liter M10 inline-four rated at 168 horsepower. Top speed was 130 mph. The Turbo is easily the most sought-after 2002 variant, with prices that can easily climb into the six figures. Check out more on this one here, and see more from Mecum here.
Offered by Historics Auctioneers | Ascot Racecourse, U.K. | December 12, 2020
In America, there is nothing remotely sexy about the name “Ford Escort.” There are no glorious images of the car on African rallies. No clips of RS-branded hatchbacks racing through the streets. We just got the crappy sedans and hatchbacks.
Not so in the U.K., where cool Escorts appeared as early as the 1960s. The fourth-generation Escort went on sale in 1986 and was produced through 1992. The RS Turbo actually debuted during the previous generation (thus why this is called a Series 2) and continued in production for the duration of the fourth-generation model run.
It is powered by a turbocharged 1.6-liter inline-four rated at 132 horsepower. It was fuel injected, intercooled, and capable of 125 mph and 60 in 8.3 seconds. Not super quick today, but fun and relatively cheap in 1988. This one has 36,000 miles and looks pretty good in black with a sly rear spoiler and driving lights up front. It is expected to sell for between $18,000-$24,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Silverstone Auctions | Online | November 14, 2020
The Renault 5 Turbo was the coolest hot hatch of the 1980s. The rally car variants are legendary. But I don’t think I’ve seen an R5 Turbo that I’ve wanted more than this one. It was built as a touring car for the French Supertouring Championship, which was a series that existed between 1976 and 2005.
Only six R5 Turbos were converted to this spec in 1986. Half of those were updated in 1987 (including this car) with a wider track, a lowered suspension, and a revised 1.4-liter stroker version of the turbocharged inline-four. Output was 410 horsepower. The other two updated versions have been retained by Renault.
This car had two race wins during the 1987 season, and it was also the championship-winning car. It was sold after the season to a hillclimb driver who managed to finagle factory support for his privateer effort. It broke after it was “out of warranty,” so he refinished it in its Supertourisme livery and lent it to the Prince of Monaco for display in his collection. It’s since been refreshed and now carries a pre-sale estimate of $390,000-$450,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
The Lancia Beta was a front-engine, front-wheel-drive coupe introduced in 1972. Lancia really switched things up in 1974 with the Beta Montecarlo, a rear-engined, rear-wheel-drive coupe or targa. It shared very little with other Betas, and by 1980 they dropped the “Beta” part of the name, and it was thereafter known as just the Montecarlo. The targa model was sold as the Scorpion in the U.S. in 1976 and 1977.
The Montecarlo Turbo was a racing variant built to compete in the FIA’s Group 5 class. This silhouette race car shared the road car’s center body section and engine block, and that’s about it. Power is from an Abarth-sourced turbocharged 1.4-liter inline-four that was good for 460 horsepower.
The specific competition history for this chassis is not clear, but the program was a success overall, leading Lancia to continue on with the LC1 and LC2 prototype racers. You can read more about this car here.
Offered by Silverstone Auctions | Silverstone, U.K. | July 21-22, 2018
Photo – Silverstone Auctions
If you thought the 1980s were a period of excess then consider the people who bought this car. “I want a Porsche and I want a Ferrari.” Well here, have both, said Rinspeed. Actually, that’s not true… those dramatic side strakes that look like they were ripped right off a Testarossa were actually designed a few years before the big Ferrari ever went on sale.
This car started as a 1980 Porsche 911 (930) Turbo. That means it’s got a 296 horsepower, turbocharged 3.3-liter flat-six tucked out back. In 1983, the first owner sent it to Rinspeed in Switzerland to get the full Rinspeed 969 – or R69 – treatment. This meant the addition of pop-up headlights from the Porsche 944, those super-80s side strakes, and custom wheels. Basically, the task at hand was “box-ify it.” And that they did.
After a few years in storage, this example has recently been repainted in Rinspeed Pearl White and shows 69,000 original miles. It’s a straight-up Miami Vice ride. It’s thought that only 12 of these re-bodies were completed as they likely were not cheap. This one is selling at no reserve with no pre-sale estimate available. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Alpine was a car company founded in 1955 by Jean Rédélé. They built rear-engined sports cars, like the A110, and were closely linked to Renault for much of their early history. So closely linked, in fact, that Renault bought Alpine outright in 1973.
The GTA above replaced the Alpine A310 in 1985. This was the first car branded as a Renault (though this car’s successor would revert to just “Alpine”). The Renault Alpine GTA was offered in a few different variations between 1985 and 1991.
Still rear-engined, this GTA “Le Mans” Turbo uses a 2.5-liter turbo V-6 making 200 horsepower. The sprint to 60 mph took 6.7 seconds and top speed was 150 mph. The Le Mans model was introduced in 1990 and 325 were made over the course of about a year. These are rare, pretty cool, and definitely eye-catching cars. This one should bring between $25,000-$35,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Coys | Birmingham, U.K. | January 13, 2018
Photo – Coys
Let’s start with what we know: this looks like a Ferrari 308. Yes it does; the Ferrari 308 was a popular model in the 1980s and was, until very recently, a very affordable exotic, with prices dipping into the low $30k range about 10 years ago.
Because of the tax structure in Italy in 1980, Ferrari decided to build a 2.0-liter variant of the 308 for their home market (and for a few export markets as well). The 1980-1981 208 GTB/GTS was a very low-production model. In 1982, they strapped a turbocharger to it and the 208 GTB/GTS Turbo was born. These were available through 1985.
Powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter V-8 making 217 horsepower, this was Ferrari’s first turbocharged road car. And it was a significant horsepower bump over the naturally-aspirated 208. In 1983, they brought out the targa version you see here. By 1985, this car was on the opposite end of the Ferrari spectrum from the 288 GTO.
Only 250 208 GTS Turbos were built, making it much rarer than it’s 308 cousin, which it shared nearly everything else besides the engine. This example was sold new in Malta and has been with the consignor for 17 years. It looks flawless and it you want something that looks “ordinary” (for a Ferrari) but is something actually much weirder rarer, then this is the car for you. It should bring between $53,500-$67,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Mecum | Kissimmee, Florida | January 5-14, 2018
Photo – Mecum
The BTR was Ruf Automobile’s first big time model. Ruf, of course, is interesting because they are their own manufacturer as they get Porsche chassis/bodies before a VIN tag is applied and tune them, before selling them under their own name. This car began life as a Porsche 911 (930) Turbo.
The BTR was available between 1983 and 1989. They built between 20-30 original cars, and converted (or upgraded) a few 930 Turbos after that to BTR specification. That specification is a turbocharged 3.4-liter flat-6 making 374 horsepower, which is 40-ish more horsepower than you would’ve had if you’d stuck with the Porsche.
When introduced this was among the fastest cars in the world, with a top speed approaching 190 mph. This car sports 35,000 miles and it’s a very rare opportunity to acquire one. A few Rufs have come up for sale recently, but this is a classic. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.
Offered by Silverstone Auctions | Silverstone, England | July 29-30, 2017
Photo – Silverstone Auctions
The Renault 5 was a hatchback built by the French company in two different series, the first lasting from 1972 through 1985 (though the early cars don’t resemble this one at all). A second generation was built between 1984 and 1996. There was nothing particularly sporty about the 5 – some used engines as small as 782cc.
Rallying was the place to be seen in 1980s Europe, and Renault wanted a part of the action. They developed the 5 Turbo as a rally car. It was essentially nothing like the front-engined, front-wheel drive 5 hatchback, as these are mid-engined, rear-wheel drive cars. The engine is a 1.4-liter turbocharged straight-four that made 158 horsepower. It was a serious hot hatch – one of the first such factory specials.
In order to take it rallying, Renault built some road-going models as well. This is one of 3,576 of the original 5 Turbos. This car was delivered new to Switzerland and sports a brilliant two-tone blue paint scheme (which is a respray) and awesome 1980s-style “Turbo” graphics. This 40,000 mile example should bring between $92,225-$105,400. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.