Renault Twingo to be reborn as an affordable EV: Electric city car is due in 2026 and will cost less than £17,000 to rival Chinese newcomers
The Renault Twingo is being reborn as an affordable electric city car with a starting price under £17,000, the French manufacturer has announced.
The quirky compact car, first launched in Europe in 1992, is set to be reborn as a key rival to Chinese brands as Renault looks to stoke competition at the budget end of the electric vehicle (EV) market.
Renault CEO Luca de Meo unveiled the car in concept form at a presentation in Paris and promised it will deliver ‘best-in-class efficiency’ when it goes on sale in 2026.
Here’s what we know about it so far…
Renault Twingo will be reborn as an affordable EV for 2026: prices start below €20,000 without subsidies and incentives, boss Luca de Meo promised on Wednesday during the unveiling of the concept in Paris (photo)
Price is certainly the biggest talking point of the new Twingo, with Renault executives guaranteeing it will start from the bottom up €20,000 (approximately £17,000) without grants and incentives.
For customers using finance, this should be available from less than €100 per month (approximately £87).
That could make it the cheapest passenger EV on the market, although Dacia’s new Spring EV, which arrives in Britain next year, is predicted to cost around the same.
It will be under the new one The fully electric Renault 5 hatchback and the Renault 4 compact SUV – both planned for around 2025 – are part of the brand’s renewed battery-powered range.
A newly formed spin-off design team will accelerate development from the current concept form to a full production car to be built in Europe in just two years, matching the progress of Chinese rivals, De Meo said.
He added that the next-generation Twingo will “be a game changer again as it was 30 years ago” and promises that it will be a “suitable city car, a state-of-the-art EV without compromises” that will do just that. are about 20 percent smaller than the models currently in the smallest passenger car segment.
He said it will be a “magic bullet for sustainable mobility” and a key product in the automaker’s quest for an affordable electric car.
Bosses said it should be available for financing for less than €100 a month (around £87), making it an affordable option
The Twingo will sit below the new all-electric Renault 5 hatchback (left) and the Renault 4 compact SUV (right) – both expected around 2025 – in the brand’s refreshed battery-powered range
Renault’s design team will accelerate development from the current concept form to a full production car built in Europe in just two years to rival Chinese rivals
De Meo told attendees at the Capital Markets Day event in Boulogne-Billancourt – one of the wealthiest and most prestigious communes in Paris – that the Twingo EV will travel 10 km per kWh and, produce 75 percent less CO2 emissions over its lifetime than the average European combustion engine car sold in 2023.
In terms of appearance, the concept harkens back to the original Twingo launched in 1992 – a right-hand drive car sold in mainland Europe but not introduced to the UK market.
Britain had to wait until the arrival of the second generation in 2006 if they wanted to get their hands on a Twingo, while the mk3 version is still on sale today with the unique selling point of the engine being located in the rear, under the boot floor .
The mk1 Twingo – on which the concept is loosely based – was fondly remembered by Parisian owners for its Tardis-like packaging, with a relatively spacious interior for such compact, city-friendly dimensions.
The design of the Twingo EV concept matches the shape of the MK1’s headlight and the three-slot vent in the hood
The small Renault Twingo 1 was launched in France and mainland Europe in 1992, but was never offered in the UK market
The mk1 Twingo was fondly remembered by French owners for its Tardis-like packaging, with a relatively spacious interior for such compact dimensions, as showcased here in the ‘Sumo Edition’
During a presentation in Paris on Wednesday afternoon, De Meo said Twingo will be ‘a game changer like it was 30 years ago’
Twingo will be a ‘suitable for urban vehicle, state-of-the-art EV without compromises’ that will be approximately 20% smaller than current models in the segment
In terms of styling, the concept adopts a number of details from the car from the early 1990s, including oval headlights – this time in LED strip form – and the three air intakes in the hood.
Those vents were designed to cool the Twingo’s hard-working little engines, which in the original car had a capacity of 1.0 to 1.2 liters. They won’t serve the same purpose for an electric car that likely has a battery pack in the floor.
Although the car will carry the familiar Renault badge, it will be designed, developed and produced by Ampere – a new division confirmed at the event today that will focus primarily on small electric vehicles.
Speaking ahead of the unveiling of the new Twingo concept, De Meo said: ‘In the true spirit of Renault, Ampere has been developed to make electric and connected cars affordable for everyone, addressing the demands of the energy transition and unlocking growth opportunities in the market utilized. .’
He added: ‘Ampere’s uniqueness is based on an open and horizontal approach with the best partners, ensuring low risk, flexibility and smart capital allocation to navigate a rapidly changing and competitive environment.’
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