Intelligent Energy

Renault's tiny Twizy EV takes on the Grand Prix

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Watch the future of urban cars at Britain's famed Silverstone Formula One raceway, where it looks like a toddler on the mound at Yankee Stadium.

A car? A quad bike? A Renault Twizy. Photo from Thesupermat via Wikipedia.

Britain's Silverstone raceway is best known for its Formula One Grand Prix race. But a few weeks ago it hosted the EV and Low CO2 Fleet Show where many aspiring low-emission vehicles had a chance to putter around the track.

One of those was the Renault Twizy, which looks less like a car and more like one of the 4-wheeled push button contraptions in which my kids hurtle around their grandfather's driveway (my father-in-law is a retired scientist who would earn top spot on the Gadget Freak Champions Podium if there was such a thing).

The diminutive all-electric Twizy has terrific potential as a low-carbon get around town car, with room for a driver and for one passenger in the back wiling to hold his or her breath for the entire journey.

But in this short clip from Silverstone, the Twizy somehow reminds me of a three-year-old taking the mound at Yankee Stadium. For those of you who have not yet seen the Twizy and who will feel a bit cheated by the video's mere 22 seconds, I've added two other YouTube clips below:

Here's a longer look at Twizy, from a Luxembourg highway. Those are probably kilometers per hour, not MPH:

And another:

Another Twizy turn on SmartPlanet:

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Mark Halper

Contributing Editor

Mark Halper has written for TIME, Fortune, Financial Times, the UK's Independent on Sunday, Forbes, New York Times, Wired, Variety and The Guardian. He is based in Bristol, U.K. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure