First acquaintance with the Renault Twingo – From the Old Box

For more than 30 years, Renault came up with a car that would become a household name: the Twingo. At his presentation we were immediately very curious about how this mischievous newcomer would prove himself in practice and in January 1993 we were finally able to experience that. On Lanzarote we became acquainted with the Twingo, which would come onto the Dutch market not long after. A first impression that will never be forgotten, as it turned out. Expectations were already high beforehand and in general the car did not disappoint.

The Renault Twingo not only looked very cuddly but even a bit futuristic for its time. Especially in the interior. It looked minimalistic but fresh and modern, with the round shapes and light green (rotary) knobs. Especially the digital display in the center of the dashboard instead of an analog clock shop directly in front of you looked very modern. It was, in fact, a pocket-sized MPV of sorts, with the windshield set quite far from your nose and the deep dashboard. A special place to be. The seats made a little less impression, we found them to feel a bit Spartan and the seats were also a bit too short for our taste. The cheerful print on it made up for it, but the possibility to fold it completely back and turn it into two real sleeping places was a hit.

Nice and ingenious interior

The smarts didn’t stop there in the Renault Twingo. Something very special happened on the back seat: “The ingenious thing is that the rear seat of the Twingo as a whole can be pushed back by almost 20 centimetres, so that the rearmost position provides an unprecedented seating space. In this way, four adults can really turn around unimpeded and turn around without ever getting into trouble.” A particularly clever invention, we thought. After all, it meant that you could not only use the Twingo as a small means of transport for yourself and some groceries. On the other hand, you lost luggage space if you slid the couch back. “Then there is of course little trunk space left, but still one and a half times as much as in the Subaru Vivio, for example.” If you didn’t want anyone to sit in the back and folded the backrest, you could also create up to 1,096 liters of luggage space.

There were also clear downsides: that the right wing mirror could only be adjusted from the outside, we found no longer possible. We also found it inconvenient that you always had to use the key to open the tailgate and it was a loss that central door locking was not even an option. The Twingo then ran for a very long time and over the years Renault would smooth out the wrinkles.

Renault Twingo

Driving the Renault Twingo

The first kilometers with the Twingo painted a pretty rosy picture. The car felt fairly adequately motorized as far as we were concerned and we could live with the road noise. It had to be said that in some circumstances, especially when climbing and on the highway, the Twingo deserved a little more power. “But yes, Renault offers a choice of one engine and that’s it.” The tested 1.2 four-cylinder, a somewhat outdated Cleon-Fonte power source, would later make way for a more modern and potent copy. The handling was excellent: “The Twingo behaves well, even when driving hard on the quiet, winding roads. A little understeer and easy to control. During the spicy cornering, the slope of the body remains within limits and with the noise level below full load is reasonable to live.”

All in all, it was a first impression that left quite a taste for more. “The Twingo has what it takes to at least become the trendsetter for a whole range of mini space wagons from different origins. But even with the Twingo as an example, the competition will struggle to match this masterpiece, because almost everything in this The car is very well thought out.Across the board, the Twingo is a carefully designed, pleasant-driving car, in which many new ideas have been harmoniously incorporated.All of this presents itself as a friendly-looking coach, which even shows a smiling face in the front view. Renault deserves the greatest compliment, however, for its ability to apply the space wagon formula to a car of minimal dimensions, which shows a level of guts that even the creative Japanese can take an example from.”


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