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1961 1963 1963 1964 1965 1965 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982

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Brochures berline

Brochures are the best means to get acquainted with all model changes from year to year - and certainly the nicest way. The major part of my collection spans the period from 1961 through about 1977, the year after which the metal air inlet under the windscreen was replaced by a plastic one. In my opinion, this change for the worse dramatically influenced the look of the R4. The most attractive R4s I think are those dating from this period. Certainly the nicest brochures were printed then. The majority of those shown are in French, with a fair amount of foreign ones slipped in between. In general, the French brochures were just translated into other languages for use abroad in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany. For other countries like Spain and England a complete range of country-specific ones exists, but basically all countries have their specialities like for instance the 1967-1970 series, where some of the Dutch ones have a differently coloured cover than the French ones. Also the German ones (for at least) 1972, 1974, 1975, 1978 and 1979 are quite different. The brochure codes are explained here.

Since Spain is completely different for all years except 1993, I devoted a separate page to it - there are only a couple of Spanish brochures shown here. A complete list of every brochure I know of can be found in the brochure finder. A rather sober fourgonnette page can be found here.

This section only shows the front pages of most of the 1961-1992 brochures I possess (most can be clicked to see a larger version); the People and What's in the trunk sections show numerous photos from inside the brochures, as well as pages devoted to picknick scenes, animals and (not so) subtle differences between brochures.

The period from 1961 through 1966 is characterised by relatively limited uniformity in the brochures. For each year, the brochure is completely different from the year before it in style and, if less, size. Per country, there are both many differences and similarities.

1962 has the very first brochure, appropriately titled 'La nouvelle Renault'. It was published in large and small formats, both folded and containing about the same pictures and showing a red 4L. Inside, it shows the 3, 4, 4L and Super, sometimes referred as 'Super comfort'. The oldest versions of the red brochure and its blue counterpart (shown below) don't show the central ribble ('nervure centrale') that was added very quickly after the launch in 1961; all have the low fuel pipe entry. Other notable differences are the versions listed (the 3 was not available in all countries), and the colour grey that was applied on the basic versions 3 and 4: first 'olivier', then 'olive' and lastly 'pyramide'. The grey that was available for the 4L was later changed into 'blanc réjane'. Other colours, only available on 4L and Super, also include 'beige scirocco', 'bleu île de France' and 'rouge esterel'. These brochures, at least, exist in French (la nouvelle) (as mentioned in a later stage with nervure central), Italian (la nuova), German (der neue), Dutch without ribble (de nieuwe), Dutch with ribble (de nieuwe), Swedish (ny), Spanish (the small version el nuevo, for the South American market) and English (strangely called the remarkable) and various other languages (Danish, Czech, Norwegian). See the 'pas de graissage' page for more information. This brochure is available as left hand drive Australian version too. Maybe the rarest of all brochures is the African introduction brochure. The 1964 Spanish 'el nuevo' brochure shown below, although similarly named, is in fact a completely different one (see the FASA turismo section for the how and why).


This single page blue one, being loaded with a chair that will clearly not fit in the trunk, is also from the first year. The Australian, Danish, English, German, Italian (there is also an alternative Italian version with a slighty shifted '4' mentioning Alfa Romeo as commissioner), and Swedish versions are just about the same although there appears to be little agreement between the various text parts. Rather special is the Australian black and white version, which has a completely different text than the colour version, as well as right hand steering on the back side. It was also available as postcard. The famous slogan which was kept so long ('Pas d'eau, pas de graissage, juste un peu d'essence', or 'no water, no greasing, just a bit of petrol') is already in these brochures. Strangely enough, all pictures are hand drawn, not a single photo is present. The available versions, given the French version, are R3, R4 (which was the same as the R3 except for the engine and the logo on the hatch), 4L and Super Comfort.


This leaflet on the right, taken obliquely from above, also shows the very first bonnet without the central ribbles, so undoubtedly it is from 1961 too. French, Italian and German versions of this 4-page leaflet are shown in the Spot the Difference section. Below a small Dutch leaflet ('Here is Renault 4L'; for some reason it existed together with the Dutch red brochure; the Dutch blue 1962 brochure hasn't been found yet) and a small German brochure.

1962_nl 1962_de

Later in 1962 a single new brochure was published for the Super that appeared in the autumn. It exists in two versions (large and small), just about the Super. 'Elle est merveilleusement pratique et confortable', which does certainly not apply to the hatch which opens downward and then just gets in the way. There are more Supers than just in France: from 1963 is the Canadian Super leaflet, while this Spanish Super brochure is from 1965. This was a model completely different from the French one, and would last until 1975, as the R1125s). The font used for the Super text, however, is the same for all three countries.


1963 The brochure from this year is entirely different. It is an A4 booklet containing 32 pages, more like a magazine. The text is about press opinions, fabrication and technical details, and a number of made-up (?) stories of satisfied customers. The R3 has already been discontinued, but the Fourgonnette is present for the first time. Even before the appearance of the Parisienne, this brochure devotes 4 pages exclusively to women ("Who are you, madam?'). Many different country versions exist, with basically the same cover, like in Argentina (or another Spanish speaking country), Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom.


A French leaflet consists of a single page and exists for the 4, 4L and red Super - perhaps a version even exists for the Fourgonnette, as is suggested by the 1963 brochure. A Dutch 4L version is again blue. There appears to be even a Greek version! A Canadian triple A4 sheet from this year is showing a blue version with the double Super-bumper, but without the downward opening hatch. It contains some of the pictures of the 1961 introduction brochure.


Meanwhile, French manufacturer of 4x4 ('4 roues motrices') adaptations Sinpar ('sin pareil', without equal) published a brochure showing what they could do to an R4. Sinpar would buy ready-made R4 and fourgonnette off the shelf and convert them to 4x4. Later versions of the brochure show Laposte (1967) and Fourgonnette (1968) versions, as well as pickup, torpedo, Plein air and special army versions fit to be carried by transport airplanes, and even an R6.


1964 This one is somewhat similar to the 1963 one: a 32 page booklet, titled 'Renault 4 - Aux 4 coins du monde' ('at the four corners of the world'). The contents are also somewhat similar: a couple of technical pages, but much more stories. Except for Billancourt, production lines are now in Belgium (Haren), Ireland (Dublin), Spain (Valladolid), Italy (Milan and Pomigliano), Algeria (Algiers), Madagascar (Tananarive), the Philippines (Manila), Australia (Melbourne and Wellington) and Mexico (Sahagun). The stories are from Germany ('Green magic in the Black Forest'), France ('La vie de Chateaux'), Italy ('Romance Romaine'), Sweden ('A Swedish spring') and again Italy ('La Campionissima'). Photos from these stories are shown here. Of course, many different national versions exist for this brochure like for instance Finland, the Netherlands and Sweden. A small version of the brochure is shown below. Page 29 is the 'Magazine féminin R4', showing the Parisienne, although this name is not yet mentioned. Also from 1964 is this single page Parisienne brochure (pictures from the Elle Magazine issue 'Elle prend le volant' are here).

1964_fr_parisienne 1964_fr

1965 Strangely, 1965 has as much as 3 different brochures, a black one, a colorful one showing horses on the front page, and a small poster also with horses, primarily devoted to the R4, but which also shows the other current Renault models (this German version is slightly different, showing 'Renault 4' instead of 'R4' and two photos swapped; there is also a French version showing the text 'Renault 4' but without '65'). The former two both consist of 16 pages, the black one being the technical one and the other filled with stories. The models are now R4, R4L, R4 L Export and La Parisienne. The stories are varying: about horse-riding couples, an cartoon about an R4 telling about itself ('I was born in Billancourt, March 21 1964...'). Of the other ones, the most telling is the one about Natacha and her Parisienne named Pénélope. Many nice photos, among them one showing a Parisienne-like model in red with yellow sides! A single page Dutch brochure named 'de econoom' (the economist) is shown below. On the back side is information about the Fourgonnette Break.


1966 A strange year, as I don't know any real brochure from this year, except for a folded poster (published in a couple of variations, some showing pictures of the Parisienne), showing an elephant loading suitcases into the trunk (on a smaller photo in the leaflet, the French childrens hero, elephant Babar shows up). Various versions exist, showing (especially) different logos. The chassis and carrosserie are shown apart from each other (like was already done during the 1961 Salon), which was to be repeated often in brochures in the coming years. The available versions are now R4, R4 Export and Parisienne: 'R4: Trois voitures en une'. Quite different is the Spanish brochure for this year: 'el coche todo ventajas' ('the all window car'). In white a small Dutch brochure, showing the logo of the Renault 4 Vrijbuiter club.


From 1967 through 1970, a series of very conformable brochures is printed. The front pages are almost the same, it is merely the colour that changes from year to year (except for 1969 and 1970; both are orange but in 1970 the '4' is placed and sized differently than in 1969). All are the same size, slightly larger than A4 landscape, and contain 16 to 24 pages. For 1967 and 1968 small versions were published (1967: 19x14cm, 12p, M009-


1967 - Except for the cover color the French and Dutch brochures are essentially the same. They contain many photos of the same family (father, mother, son and daughter and the inevitable dog), driving around in an R4 of which the cabin has been removed by a couple of fairies, dressed up as craftsmen (who act on the front page of the UK brochure for this year). As the story goes, the family have all they need, except... In 10 pages they admire the passenger space and the trunk, the suspension, acceleration, brakes, steering circle and the amount of models (Luxe, Export and Parisienne). The rest of the brochure is devoted to nice photos of the interior and technical details. A subtle choice it was to select bordeaux red as the colour of the car to be pictured, in a brochure of the same colour. The R4 already has the new beige dashboard and the new steering wheel, but still the old round gearshift handle.


1968 - The blue one features a bright blue R4 with the new grille, encompassing the headlights. The gearshift handle is now the familiar pear-shape. All pictures of last years family show up, not on the first but on the last pages. The photos are merely the same, only the background colour nicely matches the blue R4. The remaining pages show many nice detail photos in blueish shades, corresponding to the car pictured. Hand drawn versions of some of the photos in this brochure were also used in the booklet 'La R4 de papa'. No reference is found anymore to the various models from this year on. The Parisienne is not pictured anymore so it probably left the building. Remarkably, a Dutch 4-page brochure with some of the same photos is purple on the outside. The German counterpart is a different shade of blue. Two UK 1968 brochures (red and blue) both have an entirely different cover but similar content as the French one. Nice examples of photo manipulation between the French and English versions are shown here). For the UK, there is also an alternative small 3-page fold-out celebrating the new front.


1969 - The 1969 brochure is orange. The model in this brochure is a kind of cream colour, which nicely goes together with the orange background. Strangely, a Dutch language version containing the same photos as this French brochure has the blue cover of the French 1968 brochure.


1970 - The 1970 brochure is again orange. On the cover the large '4', when compared to the 1967-1969 ones attracts the eye. The contents are very similar to 1969. Further, 1970 has single page and two-page leaflets (versions with red and yellow '4' exist), with the cream R4 on the front page. The UK version has a different cover, and inside the brochure some more examples of photo manipulation (similar to the ones of 1968) can be found.

The four brochures from this period are all slightly larger than A4 portrait, and contain about 16 pages. The front pages are colourful and show large photos or drawings. The made-up stories found in previous brochures are gone now, but instead many photos emphasize the multiple uses of the R4. Strangely enough, all my copies from these series contain a separate leaflet describing how to buy and maintain your Renault. For some reason this was important then, I guess.

1971 - A hand drawn R4 in orange and green on the front (with the orange indicator lights that were custom in Germany and the UK!). Each page is devoted to a distinguished feature of the 'incroyable Renault4' (showing the same photo as on the 'La complice' advertisement): 'Elle a pris des goûts de luxe' (about the luxurious interior), 'Faites-lui en voir de toutes les couleurs elle aime ca!' (emphasizing its comfortable behaviour on country roads) , 'Mettez-là au régime, elle adore ca' (concerning the low cost of maintainance), 'Une traficante que s'en sort toujours' (its small size permits it to go anywhere in the city - the photo on this page is the same as the 'Louez deux motards', but with different text) and 'Elle se charge de tout' (praising the capacity of the trunk). Funny detail: both the 1971 and 1972 brochures exist in versions with different titles, reflecting the amount of versions that were for sale: 'Les Renault 4', 'La Renault 4' and plain 'Renault 4' for for instance the Netherlands, Germany, Canada and Belgium.


Starting from 1971, the UK brochures would for a number of years be rather similar to each other, but wholly different from the French ones; have a look at those from 1971, 1972, 1974 and 1975.

1972 - This one has a red R4 on the front page, with a very coarse raster over it. Inside, emphasis is laid on its allround character 'tout-terrain', the small budget it needs, the advantages of its small size (see the advertisement 'Louez deux motards' in the Advertisement section), the comfortable seats and the spacious trunk. This German version has a slightly different cover but inside it is largely the same, like the Belgian version. This alternative German version has an entirely different cover. Also a small French version exists (also in various other languages like German and Danish), which is shown below:


1973 - This brochure is one of my favourites. It opens with 'The Renault 4 is the car to simplify life'. It shows many pictures of a group of 4 bearded gentleman, camping out in the open, smoking pipes, playing the flute, etc. It all empasizes that the R4 (and its owners!) is non conformist, practical, easy going and still comfortable. The R4 pictured is a nice pistachio-green one. In these years, it is often mentioned that 'elle peut coucher dehors', she can sleep outside, because the paint is so good and resistant to any weather. This is also reflected in a commercial from the same year, a perfect small chanson, attributed to Michel Fugain and published recently in Germany in the 'R4 Pressemappe'. The small version of the brochure is shown below:


1974 - In this year, the Renault logo was changed to the one that was used until about 1990. In my opinion, it does not go very well with the second grille. Luckily, this combination was abandoned the next year (although I lament the loss of the second grille). The brochure shows a couple having played tennis, ready to roll off in their yellow R4 (yes, I am jealous of the open roof...). The whole brochures breathes an atmosphere of sports: we see young people kayaking, crossing rivers in their R4 (accompanied by a metallic green one), skiing, scuba diving. The dashboard, by the way, has changed into black. The German version of this brochure has, of course, the color of the indicator lights changed into orange, and that of the headlights into white. As was common for the last few years, there is also a small version of the brochure, shown below:


1975 shows the new plastic black grille. If the previous two brochures were aiming too much at a young public, this one has 'R4, from 18 to 98 years' on the front page. Inside there is a careful mixture of young and old people exercising their R4 (a white and a red one), going into town, playing in a band, parking in small spaces etc. The last page shows all actors together sitting on a terrace having a good time together. From 18 to 98 years, that's for sure! It's the 1975-1976 model I think I like most. Like in 1972 and 1974, the German version of this brochure is different; not only are the indicator lights orange (the plates are still French, though), also the foreground picture is absent, and the photo bigger. Inside most photos are slightly different, too. Very special is the Spanish brochure from this year, shown below. Two versions are shown, the Super (in the foreground, with the new grille), and a basic version which still has the first grille!


In the period 1976-1982, the brochures are only A5 portrait size. Each one shows an R4 pictured more or less from the front side (except 1981), each year a different colour. For 1976, there are two: the standard red one and the Safari. Also take note of the spectacular Arabic language version, meant for the Middle East (?) market, and the Swedish version, showing a particular black 2nd generation grille (!) and the excentric logo, somewhere between the 2nd and 3rd generation, and also a right rearview mirror. 1977 is beige (the German one has its indicator lights colored), 1978 green (the German version is again a little different). 1979 is red and shows the GTL for the first time on the front page. In this brochure, the GTL already has orange front indicator lights. Remarkably different is the 1979 Danish version which shows a yellow TL in the same position as the GTL on the French version. 1980 is yellow (in the UK version the photos are mirrored and the sunroof is gone!) and 1981 white (there is also a 4 page leaflet of this year entitled 'La voiture au quotidien'). Finally, 1982 is red.

1977_b 1978_b 1979_b 1980_b 1981_b 1982_b

Although not listed in the 1978 green brochure, the GTL was introduced in this year, in a separate leaflet (shown here in French, Dutch, German and Italian - please take note of the difference in consumption between the French and Italian versions: 5.6 vs. 5.9!). Inside, the French brochure shows the 1978 white indicator lights, while other countries already have the white and orange ones. On the back side of the French one is the cartoon by Wolinski.

Meanwhile, in former Yugoslavia the Renault 4 was also being produced, in Novo Mesto (now Slovenia) by Industrija Motornik Vozil (IMV), from 1969 on. Here we see a special small foldout brochure devoted to the TL. Shown below is another peculiar model from IMV, the 'Servis', with closed rear doors, age not precisely determinable but probably from about 1982 (inner door hinges but oval rearview mirror). It is worth noting that the last Renault 4 ever was produced in Slovenia too!

In my opinion, this period illustrates the decline of the good looks of the R4. 1976 is still great (hmmm, my own R1125TL is from about that year, yes). After that, all kinds of details I like are changed: the round indicator lights disappear in 1977, the metal air inlet in 1978, simultaneously with the introduction of the grey grille. In 1978 the grey side protection boards are introduced on the GTL. Let us not speak about the relocation of the front license plate to the bumper, the redesign of the door hinges, the R5 dashboard and steering wheel, the new Renault font... and who needs 1108cc and 34hp anyway? Also, because the brochures are much smaller, there is no room anymore for the nice stories and photos that characterized the period until 1975. Let's face it, the eighties brochures are just boring, although the 1981 Jogging and 1985 Sixties ones are atypical and therefore quite enjoyable, as well as the 32 pages '25 Ans' booklet the Régie published in 1986 on the 25th anniversary.

Jogging Sixties 25ans

Anyway, for the sake of completeness, here are the brochures for the last decade. Note that from 1987 the Clan replaced the GTL, and the Savane the TL.

this page last changed on Dec 29 17:41