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Losange Passion International is a paradise for Renault Alpine enthusiasts


The seventh edition of Losange Passion International was exactly as billed: France’s largest celebration of the Renault and Alpine marques. Held on June 29, 2024 at the awe-inspiring 100-year-old Autodrome UTAC Linas-Montlhéry, and organised by the Club des Amateurs d’anciennes Renaults, the event featured more than 850 cars on display inside the terrifyingly tall banked oval. It was a fitting tribute to mark Renault’s 125th birthday.

The various exhibitions covered just about every Renault ever made, from the Type A voiturette to the 2002 Avantime, plus all Renault Sport and Alpine A110 models. The chance to see several examples of 6 CV, Celtaquatre, Torino, Floride, Caravelle, Fuego and every Renault ‘number car’ from 4 to 30 all in one place doesn’t come around very often.

While Losange Passion International is a predominantly French event, as evidenced by the number of food trucks spewing out mountains of fries smothered in mayonnaise, Dutch, South African and English accents (from across both the Channel and the Atlantic) could be heard among the 5000-odd diamond-brand enthusiasts in attendance. Reactions such as: “Wow, Recaros and a sunroof. Now that’s rare!” suggested these were committed fans.

Renault’s history in North America has always been complicated, and usually less than successful. So it was great to see examples of its Renault-AMC partnership models, the Alliance, Medallion and Premier, on show right alongside a few of Renault’s finer automotive moments in the purposeful shape of the ex-Michel Leclère R8 Gordini and more menacing R5 Turbo Europa Cup and Maxi rally cars.

These three formed part of a larger selection of Renault factory collection cars, highlighting certain aspects of the brand’s long-time involvement in motor sport and its historical pursuit of speed records. This year the line-up of French Racing Blue record cars included a recently completed Renault Classic workshop recreation of a 1934 Celtaquatre that averaged 111.466km/h over six hours at Montlhéry, along with the imposing 1926 40CV and 1934 Nervasport, the dashing Dauphine Speedweek Bonneville, the most-elegant Etoile Filante and the brutalist Tank Riffard.

Renault’s 2023 flight of electrical fantasy, Mute the Hot Rod, continued to draw admiring glances, its relative silence juxtaposed against the aural violence of the Alain Serpaggi-driven Renault Alpine A443. Alain was guest of honour at the event, with a special exhibition commemorating 50 years since his title-winning run for the team in the European Sports Prototype Championship.

1974 European Sports Car Champion Alain Serpaggi prepares to head out onto the circuit in the Renault Alpine A443.

Other EV displays included the box-fresh Renault 5 E-Tech in launch yellow, and its Alpine white A290 sibling. Both efforts have strong visual appeal, but it’s the purer 5 that gets my vote.

Renault also surprised visitors by bringing along its R5 Turbo 3E full-electric concept car in all-new corporate yellow-black-white livery. It then delighted them with a dynamic drift display accompanied by motor whine, tyre shriek and billowing clouds of white smoke.

As is traditional, the day ended with a grand parade, where all participating vehicles took to the circuit and rumbled their way across the legendary concrete sections – a popular and fitting tribute that capped a fine day celebrating Renault’s landmark year.

The automotive festivities in this region don’t end there, though, as the Autodrome UTAC Linas-Montlhéry will once again be the place to be on October 12-13, 2024, when the circuit celebrates its 100th anniversary with a special two-day event that promises a full spectrum of automotive action. More event information can be found here.

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