Renault has replaced the Twingo GT with a new Twingo Gordini 100 model – bringing buyers sharp, sporty Gordini looks for a lower price than the full Renaultsport Gordini 133 hot hatch model.
Twingo Gordini 100: small and sporty
The new Renault Twingo Gordini 100 becomes a junior sibling to the Twingo Renaultsport Gordini 133 and the Clio Renaultsport Gordini 200. The Gordini name harks back to high-performance Renaults of the past, and a fair amount of racing heritage; Renault has recently resurrected it to bring some extra glamour to the smaller cars in its range.
Powered by a 1.2-litre TCe turbo petrol engine, it produces a keen 98bhp (100ps by European measure – hence the Gordini 100 name). This is matched to sportier GT suspension, with stiffer dampers and faster steering that aim to deliver an exciting drive.
Despite its impressive power-to-capacity ratio, the 1.2 TCe is also reasonably green – with a claimed 49.5mpg combined and 132g/km CO2 emissions; 0-62mph takes 9.8 seconds, top speed is 117mph.
Gordini visual panache
Putting all that to one side, it’s the looks that make the Gordini 100 stand out.
Twin Gordini racing stripes are fitted as standard, alongside 15-inch alloy wheels, gloss black bumper inserts and Gordini badging. There are just three colour options: Malta Blue, Pearlescent Black or Glacier white – each with contrasting exterior detailing.
On the inside there are Gordini badged seats with white stitching and blue trimmings for the instruments, gearlever and steering wheel. Other surfaces are finished in gloss black, and you also get sporty aluminium pedals.
Standard kit includes air conditioning, aux-in socket, cruise control, electric windows and the trademark Twingo individually sliding rear seats. Optional extras include Gordini leather upholstery and climate control.
The stripes – some will be relieved to know – can be removed at no extra cost.
Better on paper than the road?
The Renault Twingo Gordini goes on sale in January 2011, priced from £11,395.
On paper it represents a tempting blend of affordability and distinctiveness. But as little more than a fluffed up ‘cooking’ Twingo, on the road it may prove more of a disappointment – unlike the true Renaultsport Twingo, which is one of the most entertaining cars you can currently buy. This costs from just £12,100 for the basic Cup version, up to £14,500 for the fully-loaded Gordini 133.
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