Philip get a little Wind in his Hair….
- 20 January 2011
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By Philip Hedderman
Who’d have thought having Wind would put a smile on your face? Not a wry smile, nope. Not a smug smirk, no sir … we’re talking a massive, cheesy wall-to-wall grin. In fact, the cat that got the cream, wasn’t even at the party last weekend. It seems he missed the bus while I arrived in Renault’s latest little hot rod – and it is the only one in Ireland right now.
Yes folks, the beautiful creature you see before you is the French giant’s little demon which can banish all that stinks about Irish life with the turn of a key.
You are right to seethe in envy.
You are completely justified in wishing me ill will.
You’re even expected to want to break several other Commandments.
Nobody could possibly blame you.
You see, this funky little two seater, conjures up all sorts of unexpected emotions when you see it in the flesh.
Envy, we’ve already mentioned, but what about the rest?
Lust! Its sleek lines, (check out how the door pilar blends seamlessly into the rear) toned body and pert bottom drives both men and women wild. You’ll find both sexes pursing their lips and getting the odd hot flush as they ogle while you pretend not to notice. Vanity is not an optional extra here – it’s standard.
There’s no room for shyness either and 10 minutes inside the racing car cabin and the ego takes over.
If attitude were a fossil fuel the Wind would gulp it down by the gallon and belch in your face.
Thankfully, the mini hard top coupe is more likely to sip than gulp which means it’s as easy on the pocket as it is in the eye.
The frugal 1.2 litre, taken from the uber trendy Twingo, is more than capable – churning out a very respectable 99bhp and can hit 0-100kmh in a decent time of just over 10 seconds.
I feels a lot friskier, probably because she is so lowly slung and you are compelled to push her on a little more that an ordinary runaround.
But that’s the whole point of buying a car like this – the feel good factor – which this little belter has in abundance.
Unlock the roof, hit the button and within 12 seconds you’re in motoring nirvana.
This pocket rocket is quite unique in the hard top segment in that it utilises space in the most clever way.
Unlike its peers it only tucks away the lid leaving a massive 270 litres of boot space left after the roof is stowed away.
The biggest thrill about going topless is the rasp out of the exhaust as you sprint away from the lights.
It’s not for everyone though.
Six footers like me would find it a struggle climbing in and out a couple of times a day.
More worryingly, because of my gangly legs, the seat at full stretch causes a massive blind spot with the A pillar.
The design of the doors – which scoops up around the side of your face – again block side on views and ‘elbow out the window’ cruisers will find it impossible to find a resting place for the auld arm.
I doubt that’ll worry the marketing boffins who’ll tell you that this car is not fat chancers like me.
The promo video is set in a night club surrounded by beautiful young people dancing, erm, beautifully.
The Renault Wind can’t make you young and beautiful, but it can on sunny days take you back to a time when you were.
And the price for this fantasy …. a mere €22,490 (with scrappage).
Transmission: 5-spd manual, fwd
0-62mph: 10.5 seconds
Top speed: 118mph
ROAD TAX: €302 a year
Equipment: 17-inch alloy wheels, air-conditioning, cruise control, , aluminium pedals, CD with iPod connection
On sale: Now
Full video review of the Wind to come in Feb, let’s see if Bob wears a wig!