In a world where cheap electric cars are entering the market, this BEV (battery electric vehicle) represented a kind of first, real opportunity to switch to zero-emission mobility without spending a fortune. It has been doing so since its commercial debut in 2020.

The Renault Twingo E-Tech Electric, formerly known as the Twingo Z.E., is still on sale and represents a sort of ferry car between the first wave of the company's electric models (from the Zoe to the less successful Fluence) and the second wave, which after Megane and Scenic will be brought to life by the arrival of Renault 5, Renault 4 and Twingo (next).

But let's leave the commercial strategy to delve into the analysis of this electric Twingo, to get to know its strengths and weaknesses.

Renault Twingo Electric: platform and dimensions

The latest generation Twingo is built on the same platform as the smart fortwo and forfour. This is a project shared with Mercedes whose development began just over 10 years ago (the model's market debut dates back to 2014). Therefore, the petrol versions, just like the German brand's supercompacts, have the engine and traction at the rear.

Renault Twingo Electric

Renault Twingo Electric

The electric version, with a little more space available, differs from the smart in a few technical details, while retaining the same characteristics and performance. Because of its compact dimensions and the adoption of a fairly small battery, the Twingo Electric has the advantage of keeping weight under 1.2 tonnes. Not quite the same as the combustion versions, which don't come in at 1,000 kg, but not quite the same as some current models that have a much 'bulkier' mass.

  • Length: 3.6 metres
  • Width: 1.66 metres
  • Height: 1.55 metres
  • Wheelbase: 2.49 metres
  • Weight: 1,168 kg

Renault Twingo Electric: space on board

Although the Twingo Electric's platform is to all intents and purposes multi-powered - indeed it was born for combustion engines and then adapted for the zero-emission version - the battery is located under the floorpan. This allows space on board to be maintained.

2020 Renault Twingo Z.E.

2020 Renault Twingo Z.E.

Being a 'Segment A' that is just over 3.5 metres, there is a congenital difference of centimetres between the front and rear rows (strictly for 2), but overall roominess is in line with other cars in the city-car category. The boot has a capacity of 240 litres, which becomes 980 by folding down the rear sofa. It should be noted that the front bonnet has no additional compartments. In fact, it cannot even be opened.

  • Luggage compartment: 240-980 litres
  • Frunk: n.d.

Renault Twingo Electric: software

The offspring of a somewhat dated design and destined to leave the markets in a relatively short time, the Renault Twingo has a fairly traditional infotainment system, controlled by a 7-inch touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard.

It has connectivity with external devices and all the functions one would require of a current car, but it does not have an advanced voice assistant and cannot receive over-the-air updates to accommodate the latest version of software remotely as is the case on other, more recently designed electric models from the company.

Renault Twingo Electric

Electric Renault Twingo: travels up to 270 km in the city

Renault Twingo Electric: battery and range

The electric Renault Twingo houses a 22 kWh lithium-ion battery - with traditional nickel-manganese-cobalt chemistry - under the floor pan. It feeds a permanent magnet synchronous electric motor that delivers a maximum power output of 82 PS and a maximum torque of 160 Nm.

The system guarantees a 0-62 mph sprint in 13 seconds (but in the 0-31 is much quicker, stopping the clock at 4 seconds flat) and a top speed of 84 mph. But, above all, with a homologated average consumption of 15.6 kWh/62 miles, it promises to cover 118 miles on mixed routes (which becomes 168 in the city) with just one full tank of electrons.

Renault Twingo Electric: recharging

The electric Renault Twingo is equipped with an on-board charger called Cameleon, which allows the car to recharge in both AC and DC. The maximum input power is 22 kW: enough to recharge an extra 50 miles of range in 30 minutes and to go from 0% to 100% in 90 minutes.

2020 Renault Twingo Z.E.

Fully recharged in 90 minutes

Renault Twingo Electric: prices

Considering the particularly affordable price list, the electric Renault Twingo is among the cars that, thanks to the incentives (ended, but possibly refinanced in the near future), can receive a greater percentage price reduction.

The car is currently available in three trim levels: Equilibre, Techno and Urban Night. The first has a starting price of €24,050, the second €25,250 and the third €26,350.

Gallery: Renault Twingo Electric