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Delusions of grandeur: The F1-inspired Twizy Renault Sport F1 concept

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April 26, 2013

Like a cross between Wall-e and a Formula 1 golf cart, Twizy's Sport F1 is all for fun

Like a cross between Wall-e and a Formula 1 golf cart, Twizy's Sport F1 is all for fun

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When we last reported on the enigmatic Renault Twizy, it was out fighting fires in the French countryside. Now, apparently bored with firefighting, the Twizy team has decided that perhaps Formula 1 is more the vehicle's cup of tea. So Renault went ahead and came up with a concept racer in the form of the Twizy Renault Sport F1.

Renault admits this concept is for fun as part of its ongoing electric program, and to serve as a “bridge between F1 technology and production cars.” Perhaps the Twizy would be more at home going across that bridge to get the F1 a cup of tea.

According to Eric Diemert, Design Director for Renault Sport Range, “Twizy Renault Sport F1 is a simple yet smart vehicle which combines original lines and advanced technology derived directly from Formula 1. Our objective was to reinforce Twizy’s ‘fun’ side by using F1 cues to express its personality. In terms of both its look and performance, the result is quite simply spectacular.”

Twizy’s F1, like any proper F1 car, exists as a single-seat racer and comes equipped with a substantial F1-styled front splitter, aerodynamic side-pods to precisely manage airflow at speed, a diffuser with F1-styled rain light, and one comically huge rear wing to keep downforce in check. All this results in something that looks like a cross between WALL-E and a hobbit’s Formula 1 runabout.

F1 add-ons aside, Twizy’s twin-electric motor configuration brings about significant performance figures. With the help of Renault’s Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS), which is identical to that used in Renault’s Formula 1 cars and instantly boosts power six-fold, Twizy’s output goes from 17 to 97 horsepower (72 kW). This boost may only available for 14 seconds but should still make for some serious fun.

Combine this power output figure with the car’s meager 564 kg (1,243 lb) weight, and you end up with a weight-to-power (kg/hp) ratio of 5.8:1, just slightly higher than the 5.2:1 of the Megane RS, Renault’s highest-performing road car. The figure, albeit nowhere close to the F1 ratio of 0.86:1, is still impressive for a winged golf cart.

The Twizy Renault Sport F1’s steering wheel further reinforces the F1 argument. The mufti-faceted wheel is taken directly from that of the Formula Renault 3.5 race car, but with functions reconfigured for the Twizy Sport F1. To recover electricity, Recovery mode can be adjusted via a four-position knob, where power boost of 10 to 60 kW can be adjusted to one of six pre-set levels. Twizy drivers can release KERS stored energy by activating two steering wheel-mounted paddles at the same time. Very PS3.

The Twizy Renault Sport F1 concept car will be shown at major events this year, beginning with its first public appearance at the World Series by Renault meeting at Aragon, Spain, followed by the Barcelona Motor Show.

Source: Renault

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About the Author
Angus MacKenzie Born on the cold, barren Canadian plains of Calgary, Alberta, Angus MacKenzie couldn’t decide between marketing, automotives or an entrepreneurial path - so he chose all three. With an education in automotives and marketing, Angus has rebuilt the carburetor on his 1963 Rambler Ambassador twice, gotten a speeding ticket in an F430 once, and driven & photographed everything from Lamborghinis to Maseratis to various German and Asian designs. When not writing, Angus has for the past six years been Editor-in-Chief for elemente, an internationally recognized architecture/design magazine. All articles by Angus MacKenzie
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7 Comments

Just a souped up golf buggy.

thk

I own a "normal" twizy... and like the one I have, this is going to be a fun and cute car to drive. People smile and are surprised, strangers talk to you and congratulate you... They are a conversation starter and really great city cars. I do over 90km a day for my work inside and around the city and the Twizy is just ideal.

Samuel Holden Bramah

It should come with a matching EV electronic engine sound system also, not the less appreciated original Twizy sound. How about a powerful V10 or V12 sound?

SoundRacer

It looks like they took a Smart Fortwo and made it into a race car. I think it is really cool looking.

It would be neat to go to a theme park and be able to drive this around a track (like a go kart track). :)

BigGoofyGuy

I never would have thought "F1" when I saw it.

My first thought was, "Are you sure- Is this the right picture with the article?"

If you put a little fake rotor on the roof will that make it like a flying car?

The little rides outside supermarkets look more like real race cars...

The Wall-E motif would be more plausible by itself. At least that would just be hollywood foolishness.

That probably sounds harsh but I just get disgusted knowing that this is all car companies can do is waste money on styling foolishness instead of building better cars.

Why aren't there any diesel-electric hybrids? Is that so hard?

If two guys can build the Avion and get 113mpg going from Canada to Mexico,why are we mucking around with this sort of foolishness?

This thing probably cost more than the Avion.

Get my drift?

Griffin

As the owner of a Planet Electric, a 50 MPH golf cart, I love the concept. Being able to ride around our community golf cart paths then go outside the gate to the mall in the same vehicle fits our needs perfectly.

Bruce Williams

Insaaaane! Probably. Fun! Definitely. As an inner-city and (very) occasional commuter, it would be quite effective. I can relate to the wish-list as I drive a small Japanese 3 cylinder hatch. The main city I travel to suffers from the handicap of virtually every exit route going steeply uphill, I would love one of these to kick in at the base of the hill as you leave the speed limit ... WHEEEE! I once had a Cortina sedan with a Mazda rotary engine transplant, the effect would be the same - instant power when you need it, not 10 turbo-lag seconds later.

The Skud
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