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Renault Wind (2010–2012)

Last updated 25 August 2016

Video Road Test

Kerb weight 1131–1173 kg
Warranty 3 years / 100000 miles
Servicing 12,500 miles

Full specifications

Driving

Two engines are available in the Wind and there's an even split in terms of popularity. The entry-level version is the 1.2 TCe 100 - an engine that's used in several other small Renault models including the Clio and Twingo. As the 'T' in the name suggests, it's actually a small turbocharged engined designed to provide good low down performance along with economy. With 100PS on offer it has enough get-up-and-go to make the Wind feel sprightly around town plus it will happily cope at higher speeds, such as motorway driving.

On paper it'll cover 0-62mph in 10.5 seconds but it's not really a 'performance' engine. Rather it delivers its power smoothly and with little fuss. Maximum torque is 152Nm which is more than adequate considering the Wind weighs just a touch more than 1100kg, so it pulls pretty well in gear and is enjoyable to exploit, without sounding coarse or noisy. The turbo also has an overboost function which increases power by 5PS and 6Nm of torque in second, third and fourth gears at speeds above 4500rpm. Renault claims the 1.2-litre can average 44.8mpg while CO2 emissions are 145g/km.

The other engine choice is the 1.6 VVT with 133PS - a naturally aspirated engine that was developed by Renault Sport and is specially tuned to emit a sporty pitch. It's also used in the Renaultsport Twingo which is great fun to drive and it's equally as eager in the Wind. It revs all the way up to 7000rpm and although it gets noisy, it's a sporty sound, rather than a strained engine noise.

It can accelerate from 0-62mph in 9.2 seconds and despite not having that much more torque than the 1.2-litre (160Nm) it feels noticeably more urgent in-gear. The extra performance is most evident at at higher revs where it has that extra bit of poke which is useful for swift overtaking. Economy is still good for the performance with a claimed average of 40.3mpg and CO2 emissions of 165g/km.

The Wind is easy to drive in town thanks to light steering which weights up at quicker speeds. It does feel quite artificial but is nicely weighted and responsive, so tackling tight corners is easy plus there's good front end grip. The biggest gripe is visibility - the Wind is not easy to see out of. You get virtually no over the shoulder view, and with the flyscreen in place you can't see directly behind, so you have to rely solely on the door mirrors. The screen pillars are very thick, too, and the window ledges too high to rest your arms on.

Both cars come with a five-speed manual gearbox as standard (there's no automatic option) and although it has a positive shift, it's not especially slick, so is happier when it's not being rushed. The clutch is a little springy too, although you soon get used to it.

Engines

Engine MPG 0-62 Top speed CO2
1.2 TCe 45 mpg 10.5 s 118 mph 145 g/km
1.6 VVT 41 mpg 9.2 s 125 mph 160 g/km
 

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