Renault reveals rally Twingos - Andrew Noakes - Motoring Writer

Renault's involvement in Formula 1 might be hanging by a thread, but it has just reaffirmed its commitment to rallying with two new cars. Renaultsport Technologies has announced the Twingo Renaultsport R2 and Twingo Renaultsport R1, completing a range of competition cars that also includes the Clio Renaultsport R3 Access and Maxi. The two new cars are designed for the Group R regulations.

The R2's four-cylinder, 1.6-litre, 16-valve engine gets a 27hp boost over the roadgoing Twingo 133 thanks to new pistons, camshaft, flywheel, exhaust, air box and ECU – but also acquires a service interval of 2500km (1553 miles) of competition use.

A five-speed sequential, dog-engagement gearbox replaces the road car's conventional manual box. Gearshift is managed using a lever, positioned close to the steering wheel, which incorporates an engine cut-out switch to allow full-throttle 'power' shifts while changing up through the gears. The clutch is a hydraulically-controlled single disc. A ZF limited-slip differential completes the transmission.

The front suspension keeps the McPherson struts of the road car, but the rubber bushes can be replaced with spherical joints for gravel rallies. The rear suspension is a torsion beam derived from the production model, with optional reinforcements. The R2 has bump- and rebound-adjustable twin-tube dampers. Braking is by standard discs and calipers with competition pads. The one-piece aluminium wheel rims are available in 6.5x16” (tarmac) and 6x15” (gravel) sizes and can be fitted with 195/50 R 16 (tarmac) or 195/65 R 15 (gravel) tyres.

The only different exterior design feature on the competition version is the optional roof-mounted air intake. The R2's interior has the same dashboard and central console as on the road car, but comes with two Sabelt Renaultsport seats and harnesses and an LED instrument panel.

For safety the body shell is reinforced and has a welded-in roll cage, made of more than 40 metres of steel tubing, and an electrically-controlled automatic fire extinguisher system and a battery master switch.

The R2 comes in the form of a motorsport kit featuring all the required parts, except for tyres. Customers who buy the kit will be able to purchase a Twingo Renaultsport 133 at a special price. Kits go on sale in April 2010, at the price of €27,990 (£25,334) excluding tax.

Prices for the Twingo Renaultsport R1, which is closer to the road car's specification and is intended to offer a low-cost route into rallying, have not yet been released.

Twingo Renaultsport R2

Twingo Renaultsport R1


Steel monocoque with welded-in roll cage

Steel monocoque with welded
roll cage bolted into bodyshell








1598cc/16 valve

1598cc/16 valve

Bore x stroke

79.5 x 80.5mm

79.5 x 80.5mm


Magnetti Marelli

Production specification


160hp (118 kW) @ 7000rpm

133hp (98kW) @ 6750rpm


180Nm @ 5550rpm

160Nm @ 4400rpm

Maximum rpm










Front wheel drive

Front wheel drive


5 speed sequential

5 speed


Steering column mounted

Floor mounted


ZF limited slip differential



Hydraulically-controlled single disc









McPherson strut
Two-way adjustable dampers absorbers, adjustable camber settings

McPherson strut


Torsion beam
Two-way adjustable damper

Teflection torsion beam





280mm ventilated front discs
240mm solid rear discs
Specific pad compound

280mm ventilated front discs
240mm solid rear discs





Tarmac: alloy 6.5" x 16"
Gravel: alloy 6.5" x 15"

Alloy 6.5" x 15"


Tarmac: BF Goodrich 195/50 R 16
Gravel: 195/65 R 15

BF Goodrich 195/50 R 15




Track front/rear



Fuel capacity

40 litres

40 litres

Kerb weight

Ballasted to 1030kg

Ballasted to 1030kg




Kit Price

27,990 Euros excluding VAT

To be confirmed

Base road car price

10,990 Euros excluding VAT


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