Live from the launch: Renault Wind on the road
It's hard to avoid making cheap puns on the Wind's name, but we'll do our best.
Having spent a little more time on the road with this little car, it is evident what sort of a buyer will be parting with their cash to get behind the wheel.For once Renault showed us a bit of their market research, and the overwhelming majority of people they asked were female and drove Smart or Mini convertibles – two cars renowned for their image over their out and out driving ability.
Make your own minds up about the looks (we quite like the quirkiness and the fact it is completely different to the rest of the Renault range) but it is clear from driving it that it is more of a poseur's toy than an enthusiast's car.
The top spec engine, the same one found in the impressive little Twingo Renaultsport, feels slightly underpowered for its 131bhp, and might struggle to make 62mph in the claimed 9.2 seconds time unless it is worked hard. You won't want to speed around in this car too much anyway, as the brakes don't inspire the greatest confidence at all times. They don't stop you as much as you would like with just a gentle application, but press firmer and the anti-lock system kicks in far too soon.
The same is true with the brakes of the lesser powered, 99bhp 1.2-litre petrol engine as the set up is the same. However, despite having less in the way of power, the smaller engine is the one we would choose if we were spending our own money. It is much sweeter at lower revs and feels a smoother drive all around. Sadly it lacks the throaty growl of the bigger version, but it is more responsive and doesn't carry the feeling of lost potential.
The big selling point of the Wind will be its affordable nature, and the smaller engine also means you can get close to the £15,500 starting price. At this level, the Wind makes a lot of sense – it is a cheap, easy to drive roadster that still offers plenty of space in the boot.
There, we breezed through the whole review without a pun in sight...