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The Renault Twizy Is an Actual (Really Absurd) Car

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author photo by Doug DeMuro June 2017

Here's something you probably didn't know: The vehicle above is an actual car. It isn't a concept-car reject from the Tokyo Auto Show, it isn't made by some odd startup car company, and it isn't limited to meter maids and sanitation workers picking up trash in public parks. This is a real, bona fide car, and you can buy it today in Europe.

It's called the Twizy, and it's even manufactured by a real car company -- at least, presuming you consider Renault to be a real car company. They sell it at Renault dealers, right next to the Clio, and the Megane, and the Scenic, and something called the Kadjar that looks suspiciously like a Nissan Rogue but sounds like a villain in Aladdin.

So what is it? Well, as you might expect, it's not exactly designed for highway use. It's a 2-door, 2-seat electric car, and its range is only about 60 miles. The really crazy bit is the Twizy's dimensions. It's just 91 inches long -- five feet shorter than a MINI Cooper -- and it weighs just 992 pounds, or approximately one-forty-seventh of the Mitsubishi 3000GT VR4 Spyder.

It's also wildly cheap. In the U.K., a base-level Twizy starts at just $8,800, which is especially cheap when you consider than in the U.K., a base-level Panamera costs $87,000 -- or around $10,000 more than a base-level Panamera in the States. Admittedly, that's just for the base-level Twizy, which is called the "Expression." The Dynamique model is about $1,000 more, and it adds floor mats and alloy wheels, and the range-topping "Cargo" model adds more features and more space for an additional $300 or so.

Of course, the Twizy isn't exactly a highway cruiser: The top speed is something like 50 miles per hour, and while you see them in Europe, it's mainly only in crowded city centers. But you do see them -- and every time you find one on the road, it feels like you've entered the future. It also feels like in the future, you've become a giant.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
The Renault Twizy Is an Actual (Really Absurd) Car - Autotrader