Renault 17 vs Fuego
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  1. #1
    Member Charger_071's Avatar
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    Default Renault 17 vs Fuego

    I thought i'd post this question to see what you all think.
    Which of these 2 would be the better bang for buck, a Renault 17 or Fuego?
    I've always liked the Fuego but never owned a road registered one but i have owned a 17 many years back (Koni shocks and stock as a rock). Loved it.
    I'd like to get back into a 2 door Renault again one day so i'm open to opinions. My poor old 21 (great car that it is just doesn't cut it performance wise) and i've decided modifying a Dauphine or 4CV just isn't for me.
    Which of these 2 would be the best to modify and what modifications would any of you suggest performing. What inherent faults do either of these models suffer? What performance parts are available for either of these Renaults?
    One more thing, i know Fuegos can be picked up for next to nothing but what would a tidy 17 be worth these days and are there many still around? I've seen about 3 in the last 3 years at the Qld French Car Day.

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  2. #2
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    Too easy, it would have to be a Renault 17, but even then if driving is the key it would have to be a 17TS or 17 Gordini, (basically identical apart from trim details). With a 17TL you get the four speed gearbox with a nice big space between 2nd and 3rd, which is a bit wide in press on driving.

    Problem with a 17? Rust, rust and more rust. The later 1975 plated cars are worst, the earlier ones rust the front guards but they all rust to a certain extent. Also because they are an old alloy block, previous maintenance can be uncertain, so the liner seats can corrode causing major problems. The only fix, machine the block and install a nice big bore kit! :-)

    As for mods Reno 17 or Covert would be able to comment best. a nice set of twin Webers and other 12G mods. Things like the manifolds are available sometimes in AUS or from Mecaparts. Mecaparts having the full throng of 12G modification bits.

    The Fuego advantage is that it is newer, better protected against rust and has factory air, the 17 relies on the open pillarless effect. Overall they are softer, quieter and likely more relaxing than the 17. It also has a five speed box and a good torquey motor, the 17 motor thrives on revs. But I would have to say the 17TS is the more fun to drive.

    Also the Fuego has much better parts supply and people still waste them so parts are reasonably common at places like Pick-A-Part wreckers, things like proper 17 driveshafts are getting rare, not to mention body parts.

    Try them both out and see which is best for you, only problem is finding a good 17, prefereably a TS or G.
    Last edited by Simon; 4th January 2006 at 11:04 PM.

  3. #3
    Fellow Frogger! G4ME's Avatar
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    Simon is spot on as usual.
    I am lucky enough to have a 17TS and have previously had a Fuego. I would chose the 17 (in a TS or Gordini) over a Fuego for simple raw fun. However the Fuego has lots of bits available, goes well and is reliable. The big drawcard for a Fuego is the ability to get modern things like aircon.
    I happen to know of a 17TS in Melbourne that is for sale. A nice original car with rebuilt gearbox and motor.
    PM me if you want more details.
    I am also lucky enough to be repainting my 17TS at the moment and the lucky bit is I haven't found any rust. That was why I bought a car from Canberra. The 17TS/Gordinis still have not got the astronomical prices of other gordinis but are still lots of fun.
    All the best....Paul

    P.S. Unless you plan to turn a 17TL into a Gordini copy then I would discount it. That statement will offend some and there are always exceptions to the rules, but given TS's and G's are still cheap enough I'd grab one if you can find it.
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  4. #4
    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    Bang for buck.the winner has to be a fuego, no contest.
    $1000 will get you a great fuego, and while you are waiting for a r17 to come up for sale, you will have done about 40k in your fuego.Then when one does come up for sale, it will either be an expensive POS, or you will be paying top dollar,so on a bang for buck scale, the R17 is the big looser!!
    In fact put the mighty fuego up against any competition in the Bang for Bucks stakes, and I would have to go the fuego every time.You just cant get as much bang for you buck with any other car.
    Jo

  5. #5
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    Default R17 vs Fuego

    I had alot of time behnd the wheel of both a very good 17TL and 15TS (and many years in what was essentially a 4 door Renault 17TS) and I honestly don't think they are in the same class as a good Fuego.

    Performance wise, I reckon they'd be very similar against the stop watch and in a way I probably prefer the more revvy sporty nature of the 17 engine, but the flexibility of a Fuego makes country driving and touring a dream, as it effortlessly cruises up hills in 5th gear and because of it's flexibility still manages 8L/100k on the highway...

    The main difference between the two is in the interior and the handling.

    The interior is alot more modern in the Fuego and the dash layout is quite 'un-french' in the Fuego in that the dials are very clear and the layout very simple (the exact opposite to the 17 dash). The interior is also far quieter (in both wind and road noise) and it is also a touch wider and longer, and hence provides enough space to transport adults in the rear in a slight degree of comfort (and fold down seats for a degree of flexability)...

    The handling of a Fuego however is in another league. The Fuego front end produces alot more grip with alot less body roll and the rear end is more stable while still being reasonably supple over most surfaces.

    The chassis in a Fuego is alot more safe and solid and they don't seem to rust anywhere near as badly as the 70's model Renaults.

    Parts are far more plentiful than 17's and to most eyes they look better and are less polarising without being 'normal'

    I really think they are a different type of car. A 17 feels 'old' to drive, whereas a well sorted Fuego is still a reasonable everyday proposition while still being different.

    NOTE: I personally wouldn't touch a non-power steer fuego as they have about 4.5 turns lock to lock and feel very indirect IMO. A P/S Fuego has about 3 turns lock to lock and feels far more pointy while still providing ample feedback.

  6. #6
    al
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    Quote Originally Posted by mistareno
    NOTE: I personally wouldn't touch a non-power steer fuego as they have about 4.5 turns lock to lock and feel very indirect IMO.
    These are very wise words. The main reason i abandoned my fuego was because i couldn't see the steering ever becoming remotely acceptable. (I drove another with good wheels and tyres and it still felt pretty crap)

    You really have to fight the car - so much so that it makes my non PAS 205 feel like a dream!

    Perhaps have a look in the for sale forum? There are some really cheap 205s in there, and ultimately they are going to provide a lot more bang than either a 17 or a fuego. Obviously parts are not as readily available though...
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  7. #7
    1000+ Posts Europa's Avatar
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    One drive in a sorted R17TS / Gordini with ORIGINAL 5-speed box will show you which car is more exciting to drive. Also nice on hot summer nights with the windows down (no B-Pillar) and cruising.

    But for day to day running, the Fuego is much more comfortable and easier to live with. If you don't want a non-PS Fuego then don't even think about attempting to drive a R17TS / Gordini with original steel rims. Even the clutch gives you a strong left leg!
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Europa
    One drive in a sorted R17TS / Gordini with ORIGINAL 5-speed box will show you which car is more exciting to drive. Also nice on hot summer nights with the windows down (no B-Pillar) and cruising.

    But for day to day running, the Fuego is much more comfortable and easier to live with. If you don't want a non-PS Fuego then don't even think about attempting to drive a R17TS / Gordini with original steel rims. Even the clutch gives you a strong left leg!
    I guess it depends on your definition of 'exciting'...

    I like corners, so my idea of exciting is a chassis that produces heaps of grip yet requires good driving to exploit it's full potential. On that count the Fuego wins hands down...

    As for the non power steering Fuego's, the problem is not the weighting, it's the directness (or lack thereof). Some may find it preferable (quoting better 'feel') but I HATE indirect steering with a passion and the PS Fuego gives back far more feedback than most other vehicles I have driven and at speed you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference...

  9. #9
    1000+ Posts Europa's Avatar
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    It's really a bit unfair comparing a R17 to a Fuego if you are talking chassis dynamics - whilst the layout is the same, the Fuego obviously has had a lot more development, plus has the more modern "flatter cornerning" feel (at the expense of ride comfort IMO)

    So the Fuego is better there, I'll offer no argument.

    Give a decent R17TS / Gordini a proper drive, listen to the engine note as you change gears through the 5 speed close ratio gearbox - feel the car buzz and vibrate (yep, R17's are noisy and have more NVH than a Fuego), the brakes are excellent (4 wheel discs, double boosted) - this is the sort of thing that makes it exciting. But maybe a different sort of fun (ie. noisy, heavy, more body roll) than what a Fuego owner would normally enjoy.

    Another example would be the R8 Gordini. That car is great fun to travel in, even though the dynamics and comfort are generally inferior to the more modern Fuego. Again, ripping through the gears, the car buzzing and humming along - wonderful fun.

    In terms of staying on topic to the original posting - a Fuego I feel would be the better choice - the R17 is really for an enthusiast, who is willing to sacrifice some creature comforts for the individuality. Don't discount the old R17 completely, there are plenty of things to like about it, even if it is 30 plus years old!
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  10. #10
    1000+ Posts Renomad's Avatar
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    Why not have the best of both worlds?
    Get two Fuegos for next to nothing, decide which one is the worst of the two and strip it down to the bare essentials and use it for blasts throught the back roads and maybe track days.
    Put all the good trim bits in the other one and use it for comfy cruzin!
    Simple really and very cost effective!
    Cheers Renomad

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    Current frogs, Dad's R19 & Dad's Scenic.

    Past frogs, R12 Wagon X2, R12GL, Fuego X2, R10 X2, R8 X.5!


  11. #11
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    If it isn’t going to be an everyday car, go the 17TS/G (mit proper 365 gearbox as previously mentioned!). If it is going to be an everyday car go the P/S Fuego.

    As an analogy, the 17TS/G is the E38/E49 Charger of the 15/17 Range, the Fuego I see as a Charger Sportsman, or one of those late CL Chargers with Boca Raton upholstery and A/C.

  12. #12
    Fellow Frogger! Stu17's Avatar
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    Default Go the 17 or not

    Interesting how one car, and what is essentially it's successor can polarise opinion and be so different.
    See if some nice owners will let you take both for a drive - they are pretty different.
    N.B. you could get a 17G & a 25 (which is very much like a 4 door Fuego)...
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  13. #13
    1000+ Posts HONG KONG PUGGY's Avatar
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    I've been pondering my reply for days about this.
    I am not sure if it is more an emotional reply, but go the R17 and geta G if there is one around.
    2 reasons for this.
    #1 As you know I had a 17TL as my first Renault but
    #2 clinches it, I was 'navigating' for Craig P(R17G) in his Gordini in the RSAE rally this past July and the exileration when driving even sedatly along some of those country roads wass just great. Misterenno mentioned the cruising of the Fuego with a 5sp, a 17G with 5sp is very similar and does cruise well at 100km. I have driven a Fuego albeit not for along period and I will admit it was a fun drive but I think for what you are aftre you would be happier with a 17. I know Lisa will probably kill me for suggesting an older Renault but I think you'd be happier especially if you get a well sorted one.
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  14. #14
    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    I have been after a good R17 for ages as the look of them gives me the horn.In the mean time,i'm on fuego No7, and not regreting it.I now have two daily driver fuego's. The '85 pas red is stock standard and a little tired with after market alloys and cheap tyres,and the '85 pas silver is fully moded with whatever i can get my hands on.R21 EFI,Konis,heavy rear swaybar,2 1/2 inch exhaust,Ultra light wheels,Hot tyres,biger disks,.The difference is staggering.You get in the red, and quietly the motor does its thing, sounding more like a distant sewing machine,and you quite conservitively go about the mundane job of transport with the am radio on,not realy wanting to push the car too hard or do anything to racey.Switch to the silver, and you feel like you are in a race car. combined with a wierd throttle response, the EFi fuego just hammers, and you will often be at the speed limit in 2nd gear, and you dont feel like like you are hurting the thing.The exhaust absolutly roars compared to standard,and with the cut down gearstick,and stiff clutch,she just begs to be hurt.This was confirmed by a fuego friend who came over to raid my shed .I asked him to take it for a drive, and his comment was"Oh my god, it just wants to go".The point of this is that for bugger all money,the fuego can be transformed into a bloody rocket, that,bang for buck,and I emphasize BUCK,will leave any, and I mean absolutely any other car in its dust.(espesialy a 205,al)If you are around sydney, you would be welcome to go for a spin in the two.Feel the before and after.
    Jo

  15. #15
    Fellow Frogger! Reno17's Avatar
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    Hey Steve

    The R17 is nice to have, but I think the Fuego would be allot better to live with, seems more parts are available, where as R17 bit's in Bris are almost extinct. The Drive shafts could be an issue later on too, although you may be able to sort something out at your work.

    If I was in your shoes, and the budget allowed, I'd be seriously thinking about Booths Fuego Turbo, I think he still has it for sale, pretty good nik too.
    comfort + performance + the uniqueness.
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  16. #16
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    There are some very well formed arguments here for both cars because they represent different eras and different uses today. I agree with Richard that cruising along in a Fuego and as a more civilised mode of transport the Fuego would win hands down. Gotta also remember that the Fuego is a lot newer and more modern so I'd expect it to be more civilised.
    However as I am restoring a 17TS for club level competition I'd say get a well sorted 17TS or G and do the things you talk of in your original post and you'd have a lot of fun too.
    Both cars have merits and downsides so it's going to come down to personal preference and driving requirements and we don't have enough info on the original post to make a definitive answer. Happy to make a passionate and biased one though....

    Happy motoring whatever you decide.
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  17. #17
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    One thing I also forgot.
    Not all Fuegos are as well sorted as Richards. His is very well looked after and goes hard but a $500 Fuego and a $500 17 are all going to leave a bit to be desired.
    If your looking to spend $5k on either then you will be looking at some decent machinery in either car.
    My 17TS still only owes me about $2k and when I'm finished I'll rack it up against any $2000 Fuego happily.
    (told you I'd throw in a biased comment)

    Regards...Paul
    There is a law against doing more than 100kmh...there's no law on how fast you get to 100kmh!!!

  18. #18
    wielder of the sword Australdi's Avatar
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    ok....I'm being good & staying quiet ..and anyway...Jo has said pretty much everything I would have said

    Aus
    & Paul, standby...your challenge just might be accepted
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    1000+ Posts Europa's Avatar
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    I think the general consensus is that a Fuego would be the best choice in this circumstance - Australdi, have you ever driven a R17TS / Gordini? Would be interested to know what you thought...
    Last edited by Europa; 7th January 2006 at 02:08 PM.
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    1000+ Posts HONG KONG PUGGY's Avatar
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    Steve, this has really thrown the cat amongst the pidgeons!!
    Could you let us know what your critera would/will be when /if you make a choice in the end??
    Daily driver or club car for clyb runs mainly?
    I think the 'winner' would be decided by your intended use in the eyes of all here.


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  21. #21
    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by G4ME
    One thing I also forgot.
    Not all Fuegos are as well sorted as Richards. His is very well looked after and goes hard but a $500 Fuego and a $500 17 are all going to leave a bit to be desired.
    If your looking to spend $5k on either then you will be looking at some decent machinery in either car.
    My 17TS still only owes me about $2k and when I'm finished I'll rack it up against any $2000 Fuego happily.
    (told you I'd throw in a biased comment)

    Regards...Paul
    Mate,are you kidding or what.A$500 17 is a rusty POS that should have gone to the scrap long ago.I've bought a$700 fuego,with Koni's, sports wheel and gear nob, Hot stereo,dunlop901,sports exhaust,biger brakes,every little mod done on car, and fully tight and well maintained.Just had a dent along the side rear end.Unfortunatly a road raging 4x4 wrote it off,but that car still lives, as I took all the mods off and put them on my pressent car,a $200 one.Without including labour,which is all mine, and free,I reckon my fuego owes me about two grand.Do you realy think your 17 will beat it.I doubt it, but I guess we'll never know as you are in Melbourn.You can bet that any 17 that ever pulls up alongside my fuego from now on is going to be fully dusted by it,just to show them.
    Mention 5K and fuego in the same breath, and you make me laugh real hard Sure there are guys out there who reckon their car is worth that, and in parts alone it might, but going and buying a fuego for 5k, unless it is absolute show room condition, in which case you wouldn't be modifying it,is absolutely bloody crazy.
    Jo

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    1000+ Posts HONG KONG PUGGY's Avatar
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    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
    Hey Di, you wanted a stouch?? Think it's on now follow me, I have a chair for you right here. (just hope the fight stays in the ring...R17 fan here )
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    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    bugger words and forums,What we need about now is a day at the track, with some modded and un modded R17, fuegos and a few 205's for good measure. I'd love to put these three cars and their drivers up against eachother,and hopefully silence the fuego critic once and for all.My car is not runing at its full potential yet as it is in need of a tune, but by april the thing should be hot, and ready to wipe the smiles of some much much more expensive cars. so any time,(after april) any track, I'll give a moded,street legal R17 a taste of fuego fire.
    Any takers???
    Jo

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    In a Renault "family", I would hope that an R 17 in its various configurations could live alongside a fuego in the same garage (stable?) and the owner enjoy each for its own unique characteristics - each of course is Le different in its own way.

    Of course there are 17's and 17's (some better than others) likewise Fuego's and in both it may well be the skill of the driver capable of bringing out that last essence of characteristic.

    But that aside, it would be interesting to run some examples on the same track day, the result on the day will never be accepted by the die hards as there are too many variables in comparing "worked" cars with stock standard and driver abilities.

    A Friendly day with a healthy air of regard for all those points would be good perhaps afterwards we could adjourn for a barbecue or take over a Hotel somewhere to talk that;

    "now if only my car had.....Next time....I did better at...if only ..its too hot..its too cold...it was too flat..wet dry...its wasn't twisty enough, its wasn't fair stuff that all legends are made of or just agree to love our favourite Renault

    Sound like a good open club event in the making Richard with each group donating and voting on a trophy for the best turned out/performed R17 or Fuego!!

    Ken - been sitting on the sidelines rather amused...

  25. #25
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    I think this thread is starting to show some basic difference between Fuego people and 15/17 people. The 15/17 owners really couldn't give a stitch if a Fuego won or lost against their car on a track. It sounds like 15/17 owners don't have to prove a thing, they drive their cars to enjoy, whereas as Fuego owners seemingly always have to justify their choice of car by it being "better" by their definition.

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