Terror at 200 in runaway Renault

2013-02-14 21:00

AMIENS, France - French driver Frank Lecerf (36) wasn’t expecting to make the national news when he popped out for a weekly grocery trip in northern France. What followed was a high-speed, escorted chase for 200km in his Renault Laguna.

The UK's Guardian newspaper reported that Lecerf was forced to speed through the French/Belgian border after the brakes failed - on his specially adapted car for disabled drivers - and his car's throttle jammed at 200km/h.


He was driving 100km/h on a dual carriageway when the car's throttle jammed. Lecerf tried to stop his car several times, the Guardian said, but it apparently accelerated each time he tried to brake and eventually reached 200km/h and stayed there.

He managed to call emergency services which then dispatched a squad of police cars and warned three toll stations to raise their barriers for the oncoming high-speed convoy.

The Frenchman eventually swerved his car into a ditch in Alveringem, Belgium, after his Laguna eventually ran out of petrol an hour later. Even a Renault technician couldn’t find a way for the driver to get his car to stop while being on the phone to police throughout the chase, the Guardian reported.

He told Le Courrier Picard he was unhurt but had two epileptic seizures: "My life flashed before me, I just wanted it to stop."


His lawyer said Lecerf would file a legal complaint for "endangerment of a person's life". Lecerf also said his speed dial had jammed before but Renault had assured him there were no problems at the time.

According to the Guardian, Renault told France 2 TV that it would await the results of an investigation on the car.

  • marinda.lindeque.5 - 2013-02-14 21:57

    I've had just As MAny PRoblems woith REnAult East RAnd. Bought Brand New Car, which Look 2nd hAnd with lot of Interior And Ecterior ProblEms. From Day 2 Made thEm aware, and demanded New Vechile, just to be told can't. Do (what happened to Consumer Rights?) CLient. Services No Good,,EvEn sEnt Email to top Directors Overseas..No REplY..Told me to. Go to ombudsman! What a cheek, as per Consumer Law have to exchange vechile within 7 days if not Happy...WOrst Experience EVer. Will Never advice Anyone to Buy REnAult. Full of promises to get Sale, No after Sales Service!!! Only Attitude!! RenAult SUCKS (Very UnHappy South African)

      mark.botha.963 - 2013-02-14 22:34

      rEaLly NecESSaRy To wRItE LyK dAt?

      zane.zeiler - 2013-02-14 22:57

      You might want to return your keyboard as well... lol No but seriously, under the new consumer protection act you may return a vehicle within 6 months if it doesn't comply with required quality/specifications, submit a complaint for free assessment, maybe these people might be able to help you out. http://www.saconsumercomplaints.co.za/submit-complaint/

      paul.gertzen - 2013-02-15 09:58

      Did you not read the article? the car had been MODIFIED for disabled driving so how can the car be at fault?

      angela.henderson.5623 - 2013-02-15 10:05

      That post gave me cancer

      Jeremy - 2013-02-15 10:19

      If your post is anything to go by, presumably the guys at Renault didn't have a clue what you were talking about! If you treated your Renault like you treat your keyboard, I really pity the poor car!

      rorytaylor.futter - 2013-02-15 14:21

      Libertarian, hondbyt, angela and jeremy, THanK yOu For the HysterIcs YoUr repsponses gave mE!!

  • thamsanqa.d.mahlangu - 2013-02-14 22:26

    if it was in sa, he was a gonna

  • rollingstone.kanyane - 2013-02-14 22:59

    hei what? oh my God 200km/h? shivering

  • vickers.vermeulen - 2013-02-15 05:22

    Did Toyota do the mods on the car????

  • don.odendaal - 2013-02-15 07:17

    Switch off Ignition and put gear lever in Neutral car has to stop

  • delport.onvlee - 2013-02-15 07:46

    Renault has a button start stop not a key. I don't think you can switch it off while driving. The guy has a car adapted for disabled drivers so most probably a automatic which could also be the reason he couldn't get it out of gear while accelerating. So all these fancy new technologies can malfunction and cause serious problems.

      rorytaylor.futter - 2013-02-15 14:23

      at last, someone who knows!!!!!

  • JNaMolefe - 2013-02-15 08:28

    200km/h within an hour, wow.. he survived!

  • caleb.bennett.733 - 2013-02-15 09:11

    Typical French rubbish. I own a citroen c4 Picasso and the only reason i still have it is because the current value is worth less than the finance owed. It has been the absolute worse piece of rubbish i have ever owned and i have all the warranty replacement documentation to prove it. I will never purchase any French car again. They are all rubbish.

      paul.gertzen - 2013-02-15 10:06

      Did you not read the article? the car had been MODIFIED for disabled driving so how can the car be at fault? Seems you are more upset about the finance option you chose than the actual car

      afrikeni - 2013-02-15 10:23

      A Paul you work for Renault isn't. The fact that it was modified for disbility driving does not remove the manufacture from poor workmanship.

      de.stig.9 - 2013-02-15 13:57

      rubbish is what you have in your pants, the car was modified by third party for the disabled.

      johan.mostert.967 - 2013-02-15 15:58

      I ha a Renault Modus before my Jeep and it was a stunning car.

  • shaune.lategan - 2013-02-15 10:35

    it has a start stop button, but surely it still have a key or key-less entry device, throw the device out of the window, the car will then loose signal and should turn off, and put the car in neutral.

      afrikeni - 2013-02-15 11:21

      The car does not switch off when you throw away the key. I just gives you a warning that the key is not in the car but keep on running. Obviously when it eventually switch off, you can't start it without the key.

  • stampalex - 2013-02-15 12:06

    With any car on the planet including this one you can always put the car in neutral - at any speed and at any time. If he couldn't then the Renault gearbox is as cr@p as the rest of the car.

      Paul - 2013-02-15 12:46

      I can put my car's automatic gearbox into neutral at any speed.

      ijan.maasz - 2013-02-15 23:27

      Manual you can put in Neutral, Automatic, not so much.

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