Renault will unveil the new Wind roadster at the 2010 Geneva motor show. Not to be confused with the Wind concept car introduced at the same show six year earlier, this Wind is a production car and has been made possible by using the hardware from the Twingo/Clio duo.
The French call it a 'coupé-roadster', enabled by its folding metal hard top. But unlike other CCs, the new Renault Wind has a simple roof that flops 180deg into the loadbay – we're uploading the video to this story so you can see the simple operation in action; going topless takes just 12 seconds from twisting the manual latch to the electric motors finishing their work.
Renault Wind: a Tigra from France!
The Wind is certainly quite diddy. Just 3830mm long, in fact, putting it slap bang in Mini Convertible/Vauxhall Tigra territory. This is hardly a massive sector in the UK, GM flogging just 2900 Tigras each year.
That folding roof is an elegant engineering solution. At first glance, it looks like the system on the Ferrari 575 Superamerica, but closer inspection reveals the Wind's mechanism to be cleverer. If you open the boot with the roof down, the rear deck hinges up with the stowed roof in tow. Nifty.
The Wind is front-wheel drive with a choice of two engines and five-speed gearboxes:
• 1.2 turbo
• 1.6 from the Clio Renaultsport
Why the Renault Wind is a two-seater
Despite those Twingo underpinnings, the Wind is a pure two-seater. That leaves enough space for 270 litres of luggage space, irrespective of the roof position. Although we haven't yet seen interior photos of the Wind, the dash has a unique layout, says Renault.
Expect UK sales from June 2010, priced to undercut the Peugeot 207 CC and its ilk from around £16,000.
>> Come back to CAR Online in the run-up to the Geneva motor show on 2 March 2010 for all the latest news, photos and analysis