Renault’s new 2010 two-seat roadster: the spy photos

Published: 08 June 2009

Renault will next year muscle into Vauxhall Tigra/ Ford SportKa territory with this new Twingo-based two-seater convertible. Although based on Twingo componentry, the new cabriolet will be pitched separately as a standalone, affordable sports car.

CAR’s new spy photos reveal a compact two-door roadster quite distinct from its upright monobox Twingo brethren. Most notable is the steeply raked roofline and fastback rear, with a sloping rear deck to house the anticipated folding hard top. Very old-school Honda CRX-ish.

A new Renault convertible – great! When can I buy one?

The latest addition to the Renault range will be first seen in 2010 in production form, with UK sales tipped for that autumn, priced from around £12,000. Renault has cut back the frequency of its concept cars owing to the recession; car makers can do without the million-plus bills associated with showing off production cars in slightly changed trim.

Although the name of Renault’s new convertible is uncertain at this stage, we do know it will be built in the same Novo Mesto, Slovenia, factory as the current Twingo. The two cars will share the same hardware, so we can deduce plenty about the cabrio’s DNA.

Renault’s new roadster: the engine room

It will be front-wheel drive with a range of small petrol engines slung transversely up front. Our sources suggest it will run the same 1.2 and 1.6-litre petrol engines as the Twingo, although a new range of downsized eco petrol engines is in the pipeline.

In the longer run, we’d bet a Renaultsport version is bubbling away in the system – the Twingo donor platform makes a remarkably fun hot hatch, as CAR’s long-termer has proved. Expect an Eco2 variant too.

By Tim Pollard

Group digital editorial director, motoring news magnet