Renaultsport is known for making some crazy cars, but this one may be their most insane ever. It’s called the Twizy Renault Sport F1 and it’s a concept car that shows what happens when you put Formula 1 technology on an everyday electric car.
The result of the collaboration between the engineers at Renaultsport and their colleagues at Renault Sport F1, the showcar rides on the wheels of a single-seater race car and, just like an F1 machine, it has a front splitter, side-pods, rear wing and a diffuser, complete with an F1-style rain light on the lower side of the rear “bumper”.
Although it may look like an all-show-and-no-go type of concept, the Twizy Renault Sport F1 has the technology to back its mean looks.
Renault fitted the concept with a Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS), which is identical to the solution used by Renault-powered F1 cars. The KERS instantly boosts power output six-fold reaching almost 100 horsepower, sending the Twizy from standstill to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 6 seconds, putting it on par with the Mégane RenaultSport 265!
The Twizy Renault Sport F1 uses slick tyres (the same as those fitted to the Formula Renault 2.0 single-seater), with other features derived from racing including an F1-type steering wheel derived from the Formula Renault 3.5 race car, single-seater type mirrors and LED lights. To fit the KERS system, engineers had to make a small sacrifice and eliminate Twizy’s rear (tandem) seat
The KERS includes three main elements - an electric motor-generator unit (MGU) directly linked to the driveshaft, specific lithium-ion batteries and a KERS Control Unit (KCU). Thanks to the instant boost of power this system provides, the Twizy Renault Sport F1 sees its power increase from 13 kW (17 hp) to 72 kw (97hp / 98PS). Just like in a Formula 1 car, the boost is available for approximately 13 seconds. Top speed, however, is far from F1 standards at only 68 mph (109 km/h).
Needless to say, Renault won’t build this extreme Twizy. Nevertheless, if electric vehicles are destined to rule the roads of the future, the idea to fit them with a KERS system may be appreciated by our descendants just like we now praise VW engineers for their idea to turn the humble Golf into a GTI.
By Dan Mihalascu