Renault will launch a new electric car this week, and it could serve as a replacement of sorts for the third-generation Twingo which has been in production since 2014.
Multiple sources have told Reuters Renault will launch a new “affordable” electric city car this week. The car will debut at an event Renault’s Ampere electric car division is holding for the finance industry.
According to the news wire’s informants, the new city EV will be built at Novo Mesto plant in Slovenia, which currently produces the Twingo.
It’s unknown whether the new car will carry styling cues from one of the three generations of the Twingo, or even continue the name that’s been in use since 1992.
Renault boss Luca de Meo told Autocar earlier this year, the company wants to “enable democratisation of EVs that will potentially boost volume”. He said the new city-friendly EV will be heavily inspired by the diminutive kei cars sold in Japan, albeit sized up to fit the European context.
Speculation has it the Twingo replacement will use the CMF-EV Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance architecture currently underpinning the Renault Megane E-Tech and Nissan Ariya, and will serve as the basis for the upcoming Renault 4 crossover, and Renault 5 hatchback.
It’s also believed the new city-friendly EV will slot in between the cut-price €15,800 ($26,500) 33kW Dacia Spring imported from China, the upcoming Renault 5, and the Megane E-Tech that starts from €33,000 ($55,000).
The current Twingo EV is priced from €20,250 ($34,000) in France, and has a 60kW/180Nm electric motor driving the rear wheels.
It is fitted with a 22kWh battery located under the front seats, and has a claimed WLTP range of 190km. While the Twingo EV doesn’t work with DC fast charging, it does support AC charging up to 11kW.
Sadly for city car fans, the Twingo has never been sold in Australia. We also missed out on its twin-under-the-skin, the second-generation Smart ForFour.
The only Twingo relation we’ve seen Down Under is the considerably smaller is third-generation France-built Smart ForTwo.
Renault is planning to float part of its Ampere EV division on the stock exchange, and the reveal of the new city EV is reportedly designed to reassure financiers and the broader market about the French car maker’s EV plans amidst the widely reported slowing uptake of electric cars.
Last year Renault sold around 50,000 all-electric Megane E-Tech and Kangoo E-Tech vehicles, but plans to reach cumulative EV sales of 600,000 by 2026 and one million by 2031.
The Scenic E-Tech crossover and retro-themed Renault 5 hatch are due to go on sale in 2024, with the Renault 4 crossover — based on the Renault 4Ever Trophy concept — scheduled to become available in 2025.
The Twingo’s replacement will reportedly be built in Slovenia from 2026.