back to article Renault Wind Gordini roadster

Thumbing its nose at yet another grim British summer, Renault has added a Gordini model to its Wind roadster line-up and so given us all an excuse to put on our best French accent, pretend to be Maurice Trintignant and ponder why Renault didn’t name it Le Vent and dodge the inevitable flatulence jokes. Renault Wind Gordini …


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  1. A 31

    quelle horreur !

    This thing is rather ugly, looks like a big sleeper, and has the power of a small asmatic ant.

    for 16K ... you can get a second hand M3,boxter, s2000, z4, hell even an SLK or a TT, if hairdrying is your kind of thing

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: quelle horreur

      >This thing is rather ugly

      My first thought on seeing the images was, "This is what fugly was waiting for"

  2. amanfromearth

    Looks like a Tigra

    And therefore only to be driven by total knobs.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      SWMBO had a Tigra. The most f^ck awful car I've ever had the displeasure to drive. It never broke down though which was awful, meant she kept it for ages.

  3. Wupspups

    All Wind and no go!

    0-60 in 10 seconds is hardly hot hatch country is it. Sod all the geegaws like leather seats, BlueFang, usb media player. Get it to do 0-60 in sub 8 seconds. Otherwise its just hairdressers' special.

    Better still pay roughly the same price and get the GT line 1.6 VVT version.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      My Pensioner Utility Vehicle (Daihatsu Sirion SL 2003) can do better than that. Even after the LPG conversion.

    2. adrianww

      My horrendous American oilburning 4x4 can manage something very close to that 0-60 time, even though it weighs a couple of tons. And, in spite of having all the styling and beauty of a breezeblock, it still isn't as utterly, hopelessly fugly as this thing. It also isn't French and it's rather good at not getting stuck in snow or on muddy fields.

      To be fair, I was probably a bit bonkers to buy that car (what with the cost of fuel, tax and what have you) but it still makes far more sense as a mode of transport than this mixed-up crapmobile.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        As an owner of a similar Japanese breezeblock on wheels I would second that. For crying out loud My ISUZU manages 12.6s despite having a rather underpowered 134bhp engine. It is also less fugly.

  4. Conrad Longmore

    REN 133?

    REN 133? That would make it the 133HP Renault Sport version surely? I have the Twingo version of *that*, and it's a highly entertaining hot hatch with nice things like cruise control (in a Twingo!) as standard.

    The Wind is a horror to look at though. Where the Twingo is a bit bland (and a bit silly with the white painted-on bits), the Wind is just ugly. It is too tall and narrow for a roadster, which is a shame because the punchy engines are very good and the build quality is a lot better than Renaults of old.

    It's a shame that the designers of the Wind had apparently never heard of the Renault Sport Spider -

  5. 0laf Silver badge


    Renault styling is really in the pooper right now. It doesn't really have much going for it this car.

    Ugly, expensive, slow and uneconomical.

    It used to be that French cars made up for the fact they'd turn to dust after 3yr by being pretty. This isn't even pretty.

    And 36.8mpg from a 1.2!!!

    I've average 35.1mpg from my 2.0T 200hp.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I too get a little over 35 mpg

      from my 2.0 201 HP car that does 0-60 in the 6.5s range.

    2. Alan Dougherty

      I get near 50mph from a 2.0 DTI A3..

      I suspect it's poor mpg is because it's underpowered, thereby causing the driver to have to cane it at all times to avoid being a hazard to other road users.

  6. Tamer Shafik

    Cup of coffee?

    "nowhere to put a mobile phone or wallet let alone a cup of coffee or bottle of water"

    What is it with people wanting to drink coffee in their cars? How has this ridiculous activity managed to become mainstream and acceptable?

    1. That Awful Puppy

      I spend rather a lot of time on the road, what with my semi-long distance relationship and all. The thing is, stopping at a service station and getting a cup of coffee (which is surprisingly nice around here, better than in the average bar, and this is in a country that will commit collective suicide the second our coffee shipments don't come through, mind) for the road is really bloody nice, keeps me awake and the car smells of coffee rather than my rotting feet.

      So there, this is why I perform this ridiculous activity.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not coffee but

      What with coffee being evil, I fill my travel cup up with a lovely brew of Yorkshire each morning for my 20 minute driver to work. It means I feel more awake when I arrive.

      Why would that be a problem?

    3. Bassey

      Re: Tamer Shafik

      "What is it with people wanting to drink coffee in their cars? How has this ridiculous activity managed to become mainstream and acceptable?"

      Why would it be rediculous for my lift-sharing passengers to want to drink a cup of coffee in the morning whilst I drive them in to work? Or is it just that you assumed everyone drives around by themselves, like you perhaps?

      1. Tamer Shafik

        Coffee in a moving car

        Regardless of who is drinking it, is it really a good idea to have a hot beverage in a cup in a moving car?

        1. Lottie

          Coffee no,

          but having somehwere to hold a travel cup or water bottle for my passengers and on occasion myself is a big benefit IMHO. Yes, hot drinks are daft in a car, but I'd prefer my passengers to have somewhere to put their drinks while they're riding with me.

        2. Geoffrey W Silver badge

          @Hot beverage in a moving car

          Thats why lids with a drinking slot were invented. Really; why such a fuss about this? And downvotes for people in favour? Whats going on here?

  7. Richard Porter
    Thumb Down

    Re. Quelle horreur !

    Ever since the lard-arse Méganne Renault seem to have lost the plot with styling. Maybe I just don't get modern styling, but why the rising body line and high haunches? Why the gaping grille? Why the side vents, as though you need extra cooling for the brakes on a road car? The R8 Gordini looked superb (though sadly rust prevention wasn't a priority in those days). This one just looks tacky.

  8. Scarborough Dave

    I can remember when......

    Nostalgia try again!

    Remember my mum has a brand new Renault 5 Gordini way back with tinted windows (very cool back then).

    Was really quick and held the road like “something stuck to the road”, after 6 months the poor thing was rusty and the passenger door fell off!

    Oh! Well, better luck this time Renault!

    Still preferred my old Maxi though.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I drove one for a day or so once. It was completely mental. This new thing's got nothing on just how completely hairy the R5 Gordini was.

      I'm feeling this might be like putting an MG badge on a Rover 200


  9. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Ah! The good old days

    when El Reg was an IT mag. When did you come all over Jeremy Clarkson? Have you heard rumours that he's ill/retiring and are looking for a spot on the Sunday Times or Top Gear?

    Fugly car mind.

  10. Alfie
    IT Angle

    My wife just got a 1.2 GT-Line. I think Renault pre-registered a bunch in July and then flogged them to the dealers to get rid of them, presumably to clear the decks for the Gordini edition. Got a decent discount for ours at six weeks old and just 30 miles of demos on the clock.

    It's no sports car, but the 1.2 (really 1.15) turbo is not bad, and makes a decent noise which is just as well, as you dont get any choice in whether you want to hear it or not. The handling is brilliant, reminds me off all the old minis I owned in my yoof, there is no bodyroll in corners at all. Talking of minis, the roof mechanism is actually made by Webasto, so that's good enough for me.

    The uprated stereo with bluetooth, cruise control and climate control also comes on the GT-Line spec, so all the Gordini gets you is some additional blue and grey leather.

    It does look pig-ugly in the photos but doesnt look so bad in the flesh, although as mentioned its still a bit too tall for a proper roadster.

    I have to say that the view out the back isnt that bad, it is a doddle to reverse compared to the Kia Pro'cee'd we had before.

    However the main reason we bought it is it is in a market of one. Find me another drop top with a decent boot for £12K with 3 years warranty and AA cover?

    ^ What has the Renault Flatulence got to do with IT anyway? It has a bluetooth stereo!

  11. Jonathan White
    Thumb Down

    I'm sure it's a very nice car but I simply couldn't bring myself to go out at the wheel of one in public, let alone with the roof down as well so people could see me. Sorry Renault.

  12. Neil 44

    Underpowered with the engine at the wrong end

    If they'd done it properly, they'd have put the engine at the back and turned the drivetrain round (like was done in the MGF) to separate power from steering.

    However the lack of power for an all metal lump makes it a tepid hatch at best. Only 100bhp from a 1.2? A 700cc Smart Roadster manages >101bhp (before remapping to get it towards 120!) and can do 0-60 in sub 8 seconds (post remap) despite its terrible gearchange!

    Not sure about 17" wheels with low profile tyres either: on British, potholed roads the tyres don't absorb the bumps and you end up buckling the alloys!

    1. Conrad Longmore

      BRABUS innit

      Ah well, that's the BRABUS engine rather than the standard 80hp one. In design terms the Roadster *was* loosely derived from the little ForTwo city car.. but done properly in terms of design: rear-engined, rear-wheel drive, stuck to corners like it was on rails and an old-fashioned turbo with real turbo lag (kids these days don't know what turbo lag is!)

      I moved from a Roadster to a Twingo RS. The Twingo isn't nearly as fun (although the power to weight ratio is about the same as the BRABUS Roadster). It's a helluva lot more reliable though.

      For added madness, you could get a Roaster with a Smartuki coversion, basically a 160hp motorike engine..

  13. Rich 30


    "Underneath the visually arresting two-thirds scale supercar body, the Wind is essentially a Twingo ...."

    Actually, its a RenaultSport Twingo. A very different animal, in terms of handlinging and poise.

  14. Nev Silver badge

    "A Dab of Oppo...."?

    A even uglier Twingo with an electric Targa top.

  15. Anomalous Cowherd Silver badge

    Rented one of these a couple of weeks ago

    Looks pretty, but the appeal wore off after a few days driving.

    The main problem was the instruments are set so deep into the dash that you can't actually see them in sunlight - seriously, each dial is at the end of a tube about 6 inches deep, and they're not lit unless the lights are on. Not sure what Renault were thinking there. Pretty underpowered too, although the roof was nicely done.

  16. My Opinion


    I've seen a few of these around and still recoil in horror at its total utter and complete ugliness each and every time.

    The Nissan Juke is a work or art in comparison and at least has some sort of cuteness about it.

  17. Alan Edwards

    What the...

    Why did they hinge the roof in the middle, rather than put it on a couple of rails and slide it back? The boot lid thingy would only have to move up a foot or so, and you could open and close the roof in the multi-storey instead of having to find somewhere to stop outside.

    Only petrol engines available, so monster emissions and tax.

    The TCe engines do seem to be a bit thirsty. I only got 35 or so from a 1.4 TCe Megane convertible I hired earlier in the year, I was expecting a lot more. Not exactly quick either, but the CC is a bit heavy.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can we have some Pickup Truck reviews

    Their tax efficient and are fully loaded these days.

  19. Captain TickTock

    Le Wind-Up

    Is there a clockwork version?

  20. jason 7
    Thumb Up

    C'mon Ford.......

    ....give us the Puma Mk2!

    It's been too long.

  21. John Goodwin 4


    What's a spritley mechansim?

  22. Lottie


    It looks like a shoe.

    I saw a Wind in the metal the other day and it does look better in real life. And it was black. Not sure about the fancy styling though, it really does remind me of something my nephew would wear for games practice.

  23. Jemma Silver badge


    Its a pretty little thing when you see it in meatspace, the pictures dont do it justice.

    Personally though I will stick to my Safrane 2.2Vi. Quick, reliable, £500 and gets 35mpg @ 70mph. Whats not to like.

    The Gordini's have a long history of being widowmakers - all the way through from the original Renault 8 version with the engine in the boot (yes, you did end up facing the other way more than you wanted to) and the utterly insane R5 Gordini with the mid mounted turbo motor.

    Personally again, I like my comfort so the Safrane Biturbo AWD would be my pick - or maybe pull the motor from that and put it in a 25 - *that* would be enough to satisfy any raving nutcase, since the 25 just barely scrapes a tonne & that would make for almost 130bhp/tonne with the stock motor... tuned the PRV biturbo is good for maybe 350-400 range.

    Its good for what it is - but not for me..

  24. Colin Millar

    nasty, nasty, nasty

    1.2 Turbo?

    Yeah - cheaper than putting in a proper engine and almost guarantees that the car will be scrap in 2-3 years - that sounds like a renault.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Looks like a stale bun, stays like stink in an elevator..

    And, despite being sold as a "roadster" has all kinds of rear visibility issues. The open top might as well be the hatch of a submarine. The most claustrophiliac convertible yet?

    Get the Daihatsu Copen. Almost as slow, but way more fun - which is the point in a roadster. Way more cute/beautiful too. As a plus it's Japanese (Daihatsu brand belongs to Toyota), so won't have pieces falling off.

    And no, I don't own or sell Daihatsu. I do have an MX-5 though, for, you know, fun.

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