Review: Renault Twingo (2014 – 2019)
Fun to drive in town. Easy to park and manoeuvre. Tight turning circle. Spacious inside. Cheap sunroof option.
Expensive to buy. Lacks motorway refinement. Limited seat adjustment. Not as many on the streets as stablemate Smart ForFour. Imports ended January 2019.
Renault Twingo (2014 – 2019): At A Glance
The 2014 Twingo shares its mechanical underpinnings with the Smart Forfour, but looks completely different, with a retro design that utilises stubby bumpers and a bubble shaped cabin. As a result, the Twingo stands out from the city car crowd and looks distinctive at the traffic lights, when upgraded with Renault's huge range of personalisation packs.
The cabin of the five-door Twingo is practical and colourful, with an abundance of hardwearing plastics and brightly coloured trims. The rear-engine layout frees up interior space, which means the Twingo can easily accommodate four adults, while all three passenger seats can be flattened to provide a flat 980-litre load area.
Behind the wheel, the 2014 Twingo is comfortable, with decent visibility, although it lacks a clutch foot rest and the seat adjustments are rather limited. As a result, tall drivers might find it difficult to find a comfortable fit, with an excessively high seating position that can push knees onto the bottom of the steering wheel.
However, the dashboard is user friendly and the Twingo also gets a decent amount of equipment, as standard, with electric heated mirrors, DAB radio, Bluetooth and a free app download for Renault's R&Go, which adds navigation via your smartphone.
The Twingo is offered with two petrol engines, a turbocharged 0.9-litre with 90PS or a naturally aspirated 1.0-litre with 70PS. Both engines work well in town, with the turbocharged unit offering the best all-round performance. However, the Twingo's trump card lies in its rear-wheel drive layout, which makes it nimble in traffic and ridiculously easy to park.
Unfortunately, the Twingo isn't as much fun on the motorway, with both engines lacking high speed refinement. Not only are the three-cylinder engines rather vocal when revved hard, but the cabin also suffers from an abundance of wind and road noise, which can leave passengers feeling rather beleaguered after a long motorway run. The steering feels rather vague at high speeds, which fails to inspire confidence as the Twingo rattles along at 70mph.
Yet, despite its limitations, the Twingo has plenty to offer for urban drivers. In our view, the small and likeable Renault is a breath of fresh air to the city car scene and we think its retro styling and colourful cabin will find plenty of appeal with younger drivers. What's more, with a high seating potion and five-doors with easy access, we think older drivers will also find the Twingo to be a comfortable urban run around.
What does a Renault Twingo (2014 – 2019) cost?
Renault Twingo (2014 – 2019): What's It Like Inside?
The Twingo benefits greatly from its rear-engined layout, with significant space gains for both front and rear passengers. The cabin is actually 20cm longer than the old Twingo, which is impressive when you consider the car is 10cm shorter than the old model.
Renault has put the extended dimensions to good use, with a light and airy cabin, with plenty of head and legroom for up to four adults. The Twingo can also be personalised, with retro decals, brightly coloured trims and a choice of dashboard facias. An electronic folding fabric sunroof is also available as an option.
The Twingo is comfortable enough for running around town, although the seats lack lumber support, which makes long trips rather unpleasant. We are also disappointed by the lack of seat or steering adjustment, which means taller drivers will find it difficult to fit, with knees hitting the bottom of the steering wheel.
The dashboard is user friendly though, with large and easy to read rotary dials matched to a universal mount for smartphone connectivity, with dedicated USB connection and power supply. The Twingo also gets a decent amount of equipment as standard, with electric heated mirrors, DAB radio and Bluetooth. Free navigation and multimedia controls can also be added, by downloading Renault’s R&Go app to a smartphone.
The Twingo's boot is 220 litres, which means it will carry shopping and a small suitcase. However, flatten all three seats and it can provide a completely flat 980-litre load area. The cabin also has plenty of loose storage, with large door pockets, cubby holes and a 6.5-litre glovebox.
The suspension is smooth too and the Twingo has plenty of damping to cope with pot holes and bumpy roads, although things can get a little choppy on the motorway, with the Twingo's upright and stubby exterior vulnerable to buffeting from lorries and cross winds.
The Twingo also doesn't have any Isofix child seat mountings as standard - disappointgly you have to pay extra for those - and there's no space for a spare wheel either.
Standard equipment levels:
Expression gets 15-inch wheels with grey trims, LED daytime running lights, body coloured electric and heated door mirrors, body coloured bumpers, ABS, hill start assist, speed limiter, DAB radio with Bluetooth and compatibility with R&Go application, remote central locking and front electric windows.
Play adds 15-inch two tone black wheel trims, manual air conditioning and driver's seat height adjustment.
Dynamique comes with 15-inch alloy wheels, body coloured door mirrors, front fog lights, stop/start engines, cruise control, leather steering wheel, leather gear lever and additional rear door storage.
Dynamique S has 16-inch alloy wheels, colour details on front grille, door mirrors and side protectors, sport seats with part leather and aluminium pedals.
Child seats that fit a Renault Twingo (2014 – 2019)Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.
What's the Renault Twingo (2014 – 2019) like to drive?
The Twingo is offered with two petrol engines, a turbocharged 0.9-litre with 90PS or a naturally aspirated 1.0-litre with 70PS. Both engines are sprightly in town, but lack high speed refinement and can be rather vocal when revved hard.
However, claimed economy is good, with the entry level 1.0-litre unit returning 63mpg. Unfortunately, the engine misses out on free road tax, with 105g/km of CO2, but this can be rectified with the addition of start/stop technology, which lowers CO2 to 95g/km. The turbocharged 0.9-litre unit is much better all-round, with improved torque and a claimed 65mpg.
Both of the petrol engines are fine for urban driving, although the turbocharged unit has 135Nm of torque, which means it feels more rewarding when cutting across town compared to the 91Nm offered by the 1.0 engine. Both engines are linked to a five-speed manual gearbox, but again the turbocharged unit stands out, with decent acceleration through all of the lower gears.
None of the engines are particularly quick, which means the Twingo feels rather breathless when pushed off a slip road onto a motorway and overtaking is a rather laborious process. Indeed, the Twingo is a city car that lacks on the 'big car' feel. Both the Volkswagen Up and Hyundai i10 are more composed on the motorway.
In comparison, the Twingo feels jittery, while its vocal engines and notable road noise do little to appease the situation. The steering is also vague at high speeds, which makes it difficult to relax as you rattle along at 70mph. On the plus side, the Twingo does have plenty of grip in the corners and bodyroll is kept in check with a decent suspension set up, however the Twingo never feels as much fun or engaging as it should.
Yet, despite its limitations, there's plenty to like about the Twingo. The rear-engine, rear-wheel drive layout is extremely good for urban driving and the Renault is a fun car to whizz around town in. We also like its agile handling and tight turning circle of just 8.6 meters - we just wish it was a bit more accomplished out of town.
|0.9||58–66 mpg||10.8 s||99–108 g/km|
|0.9 GT||54 mpg||-||115 g/km|
|1.0||51–67 mpg||14.5 s||95–112 g/km|
Real MPG average for a Renault Twingo (2014 – 2019)
Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.
Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.
Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.
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