2012 Renault Twingo review
By Tim Saunders, 26th June 2012
If, like me, you never thought a petrol car could be as efficient as a diesel, you’ll be pleased to know that the Renault Twingo 1.2-litre returns 55mpg, which puts it on a par with my 10-year-old diesel Ford Fiesta diesel.
The tested girlie grape-coloured model was the result of a redesign in February. It’s not only eye-catching thanks to the friendly nose and black alloy wheels it’s also a practical hatchback that's perfect for city driving and tight parking spaces and has a aptitude for motorway commuting.
Inside, there‘s a typically quirky, yet comfortable French interior with lots of curves and plenty of luxuries including air conditioning and electric windows. It‘s strange to have the rev counter perched above the steering wheel and the digital speedo in a central display but the driver quickly gets used to this.
Space in the rear is tight but the rear seats move laterally to produce a larger or smaller boot. My daughter‘s baby seat fits in when the front passenger seat is moved forward a little.
Despite its tiddly 1.2-litre engine, it‘s fun to drive - especially on bends and roundabouts. The driver's left foot may catch slightly on the steering column, depending on how it's placed on the clutch pedal.
Parkers, the car experts, say: “Renault introduced the Twingo to UK buyers in 2007, providing an alternative to other small cars aimed at city drivers. It is actually the second-generation Twingo - the first only being offered for sale in left-hand drive in mainland Europe. The original won friends elsewhere for its excellent use of interior space and characterful styling. "
"The second-generation model is less quirky than its predecessor, but promises more practicality and nippy engines. However, the Twingo isn‘t as fun to drive as many small cars. In 2011 the Renault Twingo 1.2-litre 16v Bizu 3dr won the city car category in the Parkers cost of motoring awards. This model won the title thanks to its super-cheap purchase price and running costs.”
There are plenty of small hatches on the market; such as the Peugeot 107, Citroen C1 and Toyota Yaris and the Twingo is well up there with the best of them. It‘s fun to drive, yet economical.
Facts and figures: Renault Twingo - New price range: £10,350
Used price range: £3,143 - £8,277
Top speed: 105mph