VIDEO: Tiny Renault Twin’Run concept mid-engined hatchback could pack big power

Renault has surprised us with some fairly epic cars over the past few months, from the sporty Alpine A110-50 to the hilarious Twizy Renault Sport F1. So it’s not surprising that the French carmaker decided to build a micro rally car.

The Twin’Run is not only the second car in recent memory to have an apostrophe in its name (Top Gear fans know the other one), but it’s also inspired by the Renault 5 Turbo and Clio V6, two lunatic mid-engined hatchbacks that actually made it to production.

Like those cars, the Twin’Run is mid-engined (more on that later), and its roughly the size of Renault’s Twingo city car. Picture a French Fiat 500, and you’ve got the idea.

However, the Twin’Run was styled to evoke the 1970s Renault 5, aka Le Car. Despite the latter’s egregious reputation as a lemon in the United States, the Le Car Le Styling will reportedly show up on the third generation Twingo, giving it more of the stuff it needs to compete with the 500 and Opel/Vauxhall Adam.

We hope the production Twingo uses the same 3.5-liter V6 as this concept. It produces 320 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, which is way more than enough for such a tiny car.

There’s also the unparalleled novelty of a mid-engined, rear-wheel drive hatchback. Power is sent to the back wheels through a six-speed sequential transmission and limited-slip differential, getting the Twin’Run to 62 mph (100 kph) in 4.5 seconds, and on to a top speed of 155 mph.

If the racing numbers and rally lights weren’t enough of a clue, the interior makes the Twin’Run’s sporting intentions clear. The front seats are Sparco buckets, and the engine sits where the rear seats normally go. An LCD gauge cluster serves as a combination speedometer/tachometer/oil and fuel pressure gauge.

There are analog temperature gauges too, along with an emergency fuel cutoff, but that’s it.

Renault has built mid-engined hatchbacks before, but it doesn’t intend to put the Twin’Run into production. Not that it matters: Renaults aren’t sold in the United States at all.

Still, it’s nice to know Renault’s designers are still using their imaginations. Check out the video below:

Would you put a Twin’Run in your driveway, if you could? Tell us in the comments.

Product Review

Mercedes-Benz updates the timeless G-wagen for the modern world

For decades, the G-Class has been an outlier in the Mercedes-Benz portfolio, a body-on-frame brute with the soul – and driving manners – of an off-road pickup. With the all-new G550, Mercedes seeks to smooth out some of the rough edges.

Mercedes lets the sun shine in one last time with SLC Final Edition convertible

The Mercedes-Benz SLC convertible sports car is going out of production. Launched in 1996 as the SLK, the model has been a fixture in the Mercedes-Benz lineup across three generations.

2019 RAM 1500 Classic Warlock special edition: Badass style without the whoop

If you like the looks of blacked-out badass trucks without the cost of a desert racer, FCA announced the 2019 Ram 1500 Classic Warlock, a special edition pickup that focuses on appearance with only a touch of additional off-road capability.
Product Review

The 2020 Volvo V60 Cross Country is a do-it-all Swedish army knife

Volvo laced up its smallest station wagon in hiking clothes to create the V60 Cross Country. It's a lifted, all-wheel drive wagon that laughs at icy roads while coddling its occupants. We travel to Sweden to try it out.

Alfa Romeo’s latest Ferrari-powered F1 race car is ready to hit the track

Alfa Romeo is doubling down on Formula One racing after a decades-long hiatus. Now essentially a support team for Ferrari, its 2019 driver lineup includes a former world champion and a potential future star.

Researchers teach self-driving cars to predict pedestrians’ next moves

University of Michigan researchers are developing a system that teaches self-driving cars to predict pedestrian movement. Humans don't always act in their own best self-interest, so autonomous cars will need to practice protective driving.

Subaru’s latest VIZIV concept car is pumped full of adrenaline

The Subaru VIZIV Adrenaline is the seventh member of the Japanese automaker's family of VIZIV concept cars. It debuts at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show, but for now, all we're getting is a shadowy teaser image.

Audi is advancing the tech that teaches cars to talk to traffic lights

Audi is teaching its cars the language of traffic lights. The company developed technology that tells motorists what speed they should drive at in order to catch as many green lights as possible.

Waymo rules and Apple trails in California self-driving car benchmarks

California's DMV releases annual reports of self-driving car disengagements on public roads. In the most recent reports. Waymo had the best performance, GM Cruise came in second, and Apple's self-driving program was in last place.

Watch a modified Audi e-tron electric SUV drive straight up a ski slope

A modified Audi e-tron climbed up an 85-percent gradient on an Austrian ski slope in a tribute to a classic Audi commercial. The vehicle used for the stunt sported an extra electric motor and spiked tires.

Mamma mia! Alfa Romeo will unveil a new model at the Geneva Auto Show

Alfa Romeo told Digital Trends it will unveil a new model at the 2019 Geneva Auto Show. It stopped short of revealing what it has in store, but rumors claim it will be a crossover positioned below the Stelvio.

Citroën says you could drive its tiny Ami One electric car without a license

Citroën's Ami One concept car is an electric vehicle that's as cute as it is compact. The miniature motor only has a top speed of 28 mph, so the French automaker imagines it as a shareable runaround for short drives.

Arizona city slammed with $10M lawsuit over fatal Uber autonomous car accident

The family of Elaine Herzberg, the woman struck and killed by one of Uber's self-driving prototypes, has filed a $10 million lawsuit against the city of Tempe, Arizona. They claim Herzberg jaywalked because she was confused by a brick…

Aston Martin’s next hypercar, due in 2021, will pack a hybrid powertrain punch

Aston Martin will follow up the Valkyrie and Valkyrie AMR Pro with a new hypercar, code-named Project 003. The car will debut in 2021, with production limited to 500 units worldwide.