RE: Renaultsport Twingo 133 | Shed of the Week

RE: Renaultsport Twingo 133 | Shed of the Week

Friday 13th September 2019

Renaultsport Twingo 133 | Shed of the Week

Renault's tearaway limbos into Shed territory. What's not to like?



Hurray! Another Shed debutant this week, in the unlikely shape of the Renault Twingo Renaultsport 133. Why unlikely? Well, did you think you'd be able to pick one of these up for Β£1350? Actually, it's even better than that, it's 'offers invited' on Β£1350 for this Mirage Grey 133 from 2009, the first full year of Twingo Renaultsport manufacture.

Launched at the 2008 Geneva Show, the Twingo Renaultsport 133 was put on sale in the UK later that year at Β£11,550 in an attempt to zhoosh up the sales of the 2007 Mk 2 Twingo, a car with none of the charm of the original mould-breaking Twingo but with a lot more crashability (as long as you weren't a pedestrian being crashed into, anyway).

The 133's 1.6 developed 133hp at a raucous 6750rpm, and 118lb ft of torque at a 4400rpm, enough in a thing weighing not much more than a tonne for a 0-62mph time of 8.7sec and a top whack of 125mph. You may recall that Clarkson 'drove one into the sea' while 'attempting to catch a ferry'. While doing so he reckoned the 133 was sharper to drive than an Abarth 500. In the real world, other road/water testers commented on the sweet steering, bitey traction and handily low insurance rating.


Prices for these cars seem to be all over the place. You'll see some 2009 cars advertised at close to Β£4k, and others from the same year at even less money than our Shed. Why is that, d'ye suppose? Is there some awful secret about Twingo Renaultsports that makes them about as desirable as a case of athlete's foot?

The ad says that our Shed is one of the very first Cup variants, which were launched in September 2009 with a 4mm lower ride height and 10 percent stiffer suspension. These Cup cars were actually Β£700 cheaper than the regular 133s because a lot of stuff had been stripped out, like air con, auto lights and wipers and tinted windows. What's slightly odd about this car is that it has the individual sliding rear seats, which Shed thought were replaced on the Cups by a regular bench. Also, our Shed was registered in September 2009. As far as Shed is aware the Cup didn't start arriving in showrooms until November of that year.

Whatever, whether it's a Cup or not, a Twingo Renaultsport 133 would not be the first vehicle of choice for anyone needing to transport delicate old relatives to bingo night. The ride even on non-Cups is harsh, and so is the racket inside.


But if you like harsh, rackety superminis - and many do, for all the right reasons - then you should be stroking your chin quite hard at the moment. Up against the engineeringly interesting but visually anonymous rear-engined, rear-wheel drive Mk 3s, these Mk 2 Twingos seem to cut a sharper dash now than they did when they were new. They certainly have a much more Renaulty look to them than their successors.

We'll never know how often this car's rally-style centre marker on the steering wheel has been off to the side while going in a straight line, or how many times the 'F1 style gear change alert' (to quote the Renault press release) has gone off in the noisy search for max revs. These unknowns plus a mileage that's on the leggy side for a supermini would be some sort of explanation for the low price. You may be of the opinion that Renaultsport cars are built to be thrashed and therefore thrive on that sort of treatment, and you could be right, but the question you've got to ask yourself next is whether the Twingo 133 was ever a real Renaultsport car.

Shed isn't suggesting that the 133 was a pretend RS, or a stretch too far for a carefully nurtured sporting sub-brand, but he is saying that prospective buyers should at least do a smattering of research before splashing the (admittedly small) cash to make sure it's the right vehicle for them. Looking at the ones that are on sale in the UK at the moment, you wonder whether at least some of them were bought by folk who wanted the Renaultsport experience but who didn't have quite enough money to get a real one, so they bought the 133 and tried to make it go as fast as an RS Clio.


Non-RS-specific issues that you might encounter on Twingos include dodgy ignition key fob software, window regulators and heater blower motors. Those last two are Renault-generic rather than Twingos-specific tbh. Coils go too, as do the front springs. A Β£950 133 that Shed found outside the PH Classifieds had eaten one of its spark plugs.

This 133 looks rather nicer than that one. It comes with plenty of paperwork and the advisories on the just-done MOT were limited to some non-critical screen damage, a worn front brake disc and rear tyre, some corrosion to the rear coils and a minor exhaust leak. It's part of the stock at Guy Francis Specialist Cars, west of Brum city centre. PH obviously has no affiliation with Guy Francis other than the fact that he's an advertiser, but a quick look at his FB page should reassure you that he's a genuine guy, or indeed Guy.

Shed won't be bidding on it. Not because he doesn't like it, but because of the associated costs that come with a 424lb wife. The last time he took Mrs Shed out in a car with such low profile tyres he had to set aside a wad o' cash after the very first right-hander to pay for a refurb on both nearside alloys. Good sparks, though.


Here's the full ad

Search for a Renaultsport Twingo 133 here

Author
Discussion

SR

Original Poster:

72 posts

154 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Prefer the original, shame they never came over here.

Butter Face

19,821 posts

109 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Awesome shed. Hard to tell from the pictures but it looks more like Mercury silver than Mirage grey, Mirage looks more like primer!



Edited by Butter Face on Friday 13th September 05:35

alorotom

7,341 posts

136 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
SR said:
Prefer the original, shame they never came over here.
YES this!

Love the original, esp with the rag top!

Cambs_Stuart

734 posts

33 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Another great shed. Be interesting to line this up against last weeks swift in a "best shed warm hatch competition".

FN2TypeR

6,540 posts

42 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
These are brilliant, another swing and a hit from shed IMO biggrin

That, however, is silver and not Mirage Grey as the article suggests.

Arsecati

443 posts

66 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Excellent - that's two 'urban hooligans' in a row! I guess a copy and paste from my comments on the Swift last week, a little tearaway for brightening up the trip to the local shopping centre, park it wherever you like and bugger all insurance if you're a young 'un. This entire car costs less than a couple of months depreciation on pretty much anything more modern - damn, you could have ripped the @rse out of the Swift for 6 months, then moved it on and replaced it with this for another 6 months of laughter!

Sumsion

257 posts

121 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Can you post a picture of Mrs Shed please ?

avenger286

389 posts

52 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
As well as the colour being wrong. The article suggests its a cup when it is a standard 133 with cup pack.
Also I have never known the issues with the key fob or window regulator in a 133.
Missed are the key issues to look out for such as bottom ball joints and gutters getting blocked and then running into the plugs.
Also no mention of the belts and dephaser being done as its a fair job same as a Clio rs and potentially quite a bit of money.
Not a very informative article to potential buyers.

Edited by avenger286 on Friday 13th September 06:58

Sparky137

568 posts

130 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
From my own experience of 10 yr old Renaults, a very risky buy.

I have had three Renaults that were 10 years old, two of which had to be scrapped due to faults that made them uneconomical to repair. The third is currently heading this way and I suspect it's current MoT will be its last!

All have been riddled with stupid design faults that can make a job that would take an hour on another make take a day on a Renault.

A car to buy at this age if you only expect to get a years motoring for your money and then throw the car away!

mooseracer

604 posts

119 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
avenger286 said:
The article suggests its a cup when it is a standard 133 with cup pack.


Edited by avenger286 on Friday 13th September 06:58
It even says as much in the advert, so not sure where sheds confusion came from.

jase_llan

20 posts

6 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Good shed as has been said, can only imagine these are a bundle of fun... Someone I know was debating one of these but ended up in an FN2 Civic Type-S - I'm sure the Civic is more dependable but I bet the Renault would give better smiles per gallon!

Dynion Araf Uchaf

2,323 posts

172 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
I have one as my track slag. Bought from an auction unseen, required a decent service but so far has been good on track taking quite a lot of punishment.

Article failed to mention the 'cam belt and dephaser' issue which is common to all sporting Reggie's. Not sure that it is the poor man's Clio. It's just that most Clio 182's are track cars these days.

I quite like mine, it's not a rocket ship on track but it handles and brakes well enough. The prices are all over the place for them and and don't think they sell that fast either.

sjabrown

1,339 posts

109 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Sparky137 said:
From my own experience of 10 yr old Renaults, a very risky buy.

I have had three Renaults that were 10 years old, two of which had to be scrapped due to faults that made them uneconomical to repair. The third is currently heading this way and I suspect it's current MoT will be its last!
Risky enough to do three times over?!!

avenger286

389 posts

52 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
sjabrown said:
Sparky137 said:
From my own experience of 10 yr old Renaults, a very risky buy.

I have had three Renaults that were 10 years old, two of which had to be scrapped due to faults that made them uneconomical to repair. The third is currently heading this way and I suspect it's current MoT will be its last!
Risky enough to do three times over?!!
3 times? Have you purchased other people's problems?
I run 2 10 year old Renaults that have had nothing but services and wear and tear items.
Grand Scenic dci.
Twingo RS 163 cup .


mikeyr

2,576 posts

142 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
So I've had a few small, fun cars (Cooper S, Puma, Clio 182, etc) which I think gives me a reasonable range to compare to and I really love our little Twingo.

Agree with other posters comments regarding belt change, pricey by all accounts. Ours has had it done by previous owner. Some kangaroo from cold for first thirty seconds.
Also, alloys stick out and you'll do well to find any that don't have kerb rash.

So what are they like to drive? It isn't fast but fun to rev, they rise more rapidly at 4k upwards. The ride is generously described as firm, you can feel yourself lifting out the seat over motorway expansion joints! biggrin Grip is great, never had anything that was quite so tenacious at roundabouts even on the very budgety tyres, if there was a mini roundabout race track I'd choose this car over any other wink

In summary, it's a car that isn't fast but feels like it is, a perfect way to have fun without having to take high speed risks.

Ours has done about 70k, everything works and it feels much more solid than the 182 we owned previously. Rear seats slide back and forth for more boot/leg space too. I'd make sure you can live with the heavy control weights, clutch, steering, etc (very RenaultSport) and the lack of a sixth gear would make it a impractical motorway commuter. Although it is rock solid at motorway speeds.

HTP99

15,513 posts

89 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Had one of these as a demo; not a Cup as this isn't a Cup, but a 133 with a Cup pack (as this one is), horrible on the motorway, crap on fuel, uncomfortable, but I absolutely loved it, brings back fond memories.

krisdelta

4,062 posts

150 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Great shed, that is worth way more than it's cost in fun. Cracking find!

Loplop

1,715 posts

134 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
How different are these to a run of the mill Twingo? I know they've got more power and they've had chassis tweaks, but SWMBOs old Dynamique was one of the most miserable cars I've ever driven.

Turbobanana

1,613 posts

150 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
avenger286 said:
...Not a very informative article to potential buyers. ...
You didn't come here expecting that, did you?

Two fizzy warm hatches in two weeks from Shed - makes a change from V8s, I guess.

avenger286

389 posts

52 months

Friday 13th September 2019
quotequote all
Loplop said:
How different are these to a run of the mill Twingo? I know they've got more power and they've had chassis tweaks, but SWMBOs old Dynamique was one of the most miserable cars I've ever driven.
Lot wider track with different suspension set up and alloy bottom arms. Laguna mk3 front calipers running 172 discs. Clio rear discs set up. The seats are also really good. My son had a GT and my 133 is world's apart from that.