A Frenchman is suing Renault after the cruise control system on his Megané caused the car to accelerate out of control. Frank Lucerf was reportedly taken on an hour-long joyride along a motorway at speeds of up to 125mph and escaped only when his car ran out of petrol.
Frank Lecerf said “it was a miracle” he was left unharmed when the third-generation Megané failed to disengage the cruise control on the A16, which connects Amiens and Paris.
After heading out to go shopping, he joined the motorway and slipped the car into cruise control at 100kph (62 mph). But the car apparently had other ideas and started to pick up speed. Lecerf tried to hault the vehicle’s progress by hitting the brake, but watched in disbelief as the Renault kept accelerating to its top speed.
“I was panicking, so I called the emergency services,” reported the 36-year old, “…and a technician from Renault” – cool and calm, given the circumstances!
Like a scene from Speed, the gendarmes created a convoy to escort the rogue car as it travelled north past Abbeville toward the coast and across the Belgian border past Calais and Dunkirk. Authorities had to clear two toll booths and a border crossing to help provide safe passage during the hour-long drive.
We can think of a few things we’d have tried to bring the car to a halt (shift to neutral, turn the ignition off, repeatedly crap ourselves until the excess weight slowed the thing to a crawl) but Mr Lecerf was unable to resolve the situation with the cabin controls no matter what he tried.
The car only stopped when the car ran out of petrol. Luckily, Lecerf was uninjured, though he had to be treated by medics after suffering two seizures.
According to Lecerf, this wasn’t the first time his Renault Megane had accelerated out of control. The Frenchman claims he’d taken the car to a Renault dealership when the same thing happened before, but Renault returned the car to him saying no problem had been found.
Mr Ghislain Fey, his solicitor, said civil action would be taken against Renault for ‘endangerment of lives.’