Renault Says Twizy Is Safe – Euro NCAP Crash-Test Video Suggests Otherwise


Recently, Renault tweeted (see image above) in regards to the safety of Twizy.ย  Now, as we all know, Twizy is not a car, but rather a quadricycle.ย  This means that Twizy doesn’t need to meet safety requirements of a car.

But since Renault tweeted touting the safety of Twizy, we figured we’d search for some crash test video of Twizy. We found one:

“Euro NCAP has tested the Renault Twizy 80 in front and side impact at 50km/h to get a picture of the safety level of this heavy quadricycle. The vehicle performed very poorly and showed serious risks of life threatening injuries.”

“Very poorly” is perhaps an understatement.ย  Check out the Euro NCAP crash-test video below:

But this tweet from Renault is one we can surely agree with:

It Is Easy To Park Though.  We Can't Argue Against That

It Is Easy To Park Though. We Can’t Argue Against That

Category: Crashed EVsRenault


29 responses to "Renault Says Twizy Is Safe – Euro NCAP Crash-Test Video Suggests Otherwise"
  1. Dan says:

    I think Renaults point here is that it’s safe compared to a motorcycle (“safer than a 2 wheeler”).

    As a vehicle it blurs the line between a motorcycle and a car, which is reflected in all areas (safety, price, efficiency etc).

    1. liuping says:

      One of the drawing shows a passenger in the back seat.

      I would not want to be in that location in even the most minor rear end collision. It looks like it might actually be less safe than a motorcycle, at there you might be thrown forward, but at least not crushed.

      1. Osbrook says:

        I was hit at low speed by a car in my Twizy and the wheels took all the impact. No damage to the Twizy. Now if that had been my Motorbike !!!!!!

    2. Samwise says:

      Agreed, lets see 50 kph into a wall crash test video of a motorcycle for comparison, pretty darn certain the results will be far worse, I imagine the rider just goes straight over the bars and into the wall at about 40 kph.

    3. mtr sun says:

      And BMW i3 Only got 4 stars at EuroNcap!
      Not Good!

  2. Aaron says:

    The front crash didn’t look terrible. The panels falling off made it look worse than it was. Notice even the windscreen is not shattered.

    The side crash is just obvious. With no “door” per se, of course the crash test result will be bad.

    1. sven says:

      I don’t know what front crash video you were looking at, but the one I saw looked like the seat belts were made out of rubber bands, and the only crumple zone was the driver’s knees/legs. Let’s just say the driver won’t be walking away after a front impact at that speed. He’ll probably only be walking after they do surgery to place some rods in his legs, waiting months for his broken knee/leg bones to heal, and then many months of rehab to learn to walk again.

      The difference in safety engineering between the Twizy and the Smart is like night and day.

  3. AddLightness says:

    The drawings show a side impact barrier on the “door”. I don’t see it on the vehicle in the video.

  4. Just_Chris says:

    What is safe? If you drive a twizy at 80 kph into a wall I don’t fancy your chances but is that likely? That is full throttle no brakes at a wall, not, IMO likely. Side impact is possibly more of a concern but again I am unsure of how often this would occur.

    There are a good few thousand twizy’s on the road I’d be interested to know if there have been more serious accidents in twizy’s than other cars or motor cycles. Speed is known to be a major contributer to traffic accidents so I would suspect that a speed restricted vehicle would result in fewer accidents and hence fewer serious consequences even if there is less side protection.

    1. jmollard says:

      I know this may seem surprising, but my bicycle commute to work even feels safer. I avoid dangerous streets, intersections and drivers because I know I’ll lose. The Twizzy is not a highway vehicle, but you’ll still be in the thick of city driving and accidents. As a Twizzy driver I would be hyper aware not to crash, but I would still be very worried about every other vehicle on the road who isn’t.

      1. Just_Chris says:

        I cycled in London every day as my commute for about 8 years. In that time I was involved in a few accidents including being hit by a bus and a close shave with Cliff Richard (thankfully he was more alert than me). I had no air bag, no side impact protection, no seat belt, no ABS and, as my wife and mother have pointed out WRT that period of my life, no sense. I was never hospitalised because the speeds of the accidents were much lower than on a freeway or even the open road.

        I have since realised that I am mortal and am now fairly risk adverse. I would have no problem in putting either of my sons in the back of a Twizy and driving round Melbourne, I am not so sure if I would be as confident to put him on the back of a push bike and cycle around the same streets, and I would be extremely hesitant to have him ride on the back of a motor cycle.

        As I mention above a full throttle smash into a wall seems unlikely, side impact could be improved with such a short wheel base but overall I think the car is as safe as a regular car. If you drove most cars at their top speed into a wall you’d kill your self and probably anyone behind the wall.

        1. sven says:

          I can’t go very far in NYC without seeing a Ghost Bike memorial to someone who died or was seriously injured in a bike vs. car/truck/bus accident. I even saw a bicyclist get doored just other day. NYC has tried to make the city more bike friendly by converting many traffic lanes to bike lanes, lowering the speed limit to 25 mph, and starting a bike sharing program. But it’s still too dangerous for me ride as often as I did in my fearless youth. I’m also more health conscious these days and don’t want to be sucking down exhaust fumes deep into my lungs. The day when most/all vehicles are ZEVs can’t come soon enough.

    2. sven says:

      “If you drive a twizy at 80 kph [50 mph] into a wall I donโ€™t fancy your chances but is that likely? That is full throttle no brakes at a wall, not, IMO likely.”

      I could easily see a Twizy and a car each traveling at 40 kph (25 mph) in opposite directions when suddenly one of them crosses the double yellow line and they crash head on into each other. A head on crash with both cars traveling 40 kph (25 mph) is as bad or worse for the light weight Twizy as getting into a single car frontal crash at 80 kph (50 mph).

      1. The Twizy needs only half of a lane, driving at the far right side and you can pass by a car or truck centered on the road.

      2. Just_Chris says:

        That seems a far more likely scenario, and not one I’d like to experience but on looking at the video the cabin didn’t collapse so I suspect that the driver would survive. I was in a similar accident about 20 years ago and the engine block came through the foot well, fortunately, the seat was right back so it didn’t crash my feet/legs. This is not something that the twizy driver would have to worry about.

        All of this is very subjective I would really like to see the numbers, total miles driven vs total serious injuries. My feeling is (and it is only a feeling, honestly I have no idea) that limiting the speed (and acceleration) of the car to 50 mph is a far more effective way of avoiding serious injury than air bags and crumple zones. The safest accident is the one that never happened.

    3. Osbrook says:

      In the UK in the cold and Damp the throttle does jam on so an impact a speed is a possibility. Not that Renault will acknowledge that it happens.

      Their fix – Take the car in to the Dealer who parks it overnight in a warm garage and reports no fault found!

  5. Mike says:

    wow – so some go you more “enlightened” folks are suggesting that because none of us intend to crash into a wall that crash test are just some bureaucratic nonsense that we don’t need.
    or even suggesting that because the twizy is only half a lane wide that its less likely to get hit?
    short sighted much?
    surprising news for some folks (apparently) 50K is not “full throttle” – its 31MPH
    Just the speed you will be going past a T junction when that big SUV pulls out in front of you because they missed your half size car.
    Anyone driving a real car with a real 4-5 star crash tested car will walk away basically unscathed – while you in your Twizy will be looking at serious injury and a hospital stay.

    I know what I’d rather be driving.

    1. Djoni says:

      It’s your choice.
      But I would much prefer a very alert machine that can stop or avoid any troubling situation. And the Twizy is probably a very quick machine.
      This is called active safety.
      Whatever the situation, you’ll be better off avoidin any colision.
      Playing defensive is very helpfull and save my life many time throught my motorcyclist life and now as a cyclist.
      Never been involved in a crash driving car or truck either.
      It’s the best way I know to stay healty.

    2. Osbrook says:

      Stop comparing the Twizy to a Normal Car an SUV in your case it is much more like a Motorbike, but safer. What is a Normal car – one with doors and side windows – like the G-wiz or the other micro car in the same tests? Or some huge 2 tonne gas burner carrying the same number of people?

      I sold both my car and my motorbike after I had the Twizy through the first winter. No going back far too much fun.

  6. Anon says:

    NEVs and golf carts aren’t very safe. News at 11…

  7. Rex Wilson says:

    4 Wheels for stability is good, but why are the wheels projecting out of the vehicle.

    So is this just a 1 Seater vehicle. $17,000 for 1 seater is way too much.

  8. Jack says:

    Well the Twizy has been designed as an alternative to Scooters etc. It’s a Quadricycle / Street-use-ATV and in fact the safest thing you can get out of this Classification with the Drivers 4-point Seatbealt and Airbag. And please never compare it with a real Car (which the Smart is in case of Crash Design, Speed etc)!
    It’s usually used within Urban Area, so reality says City Speeds are the more common crash situations to it and for the few Incidents we have seen in German Media, the Twizy performed very well in those low speed crashes. However being shot from behind by a much larger car and different other Scenarios, higher Speeds etc. are of course more problematic.
    The Twizy is build on a very stable safety steel frame (in fact handbuild at Renault’s Sport Division which is more know for also creating the Formula 1 Renault Engines etc…). The Plastic parts you see above are not holding anything, this is just Decoration. The Steel Frame will hold such crash Speeds without any issue, problem is the increased load which is then going over to the Passengers. What you see on the Passengers belts giving more way (what someone has described as “rubber band” is the load limiter of the belts trying to lower the G-load on the Drivers body and thus in fact protecting it. Something that happens in a “normal” car as well once the load get’s to high, but anyway. The mentioned Euro-NCAP test has been criticized in different Medias as it looked as have being placed especially against different light electric vehicles. For the Twizy in this test, they have even disassembled the half doors. On critics they stated, that this doors had no effects on the crash either so they have been removed. Critics state that at least on the side impact it would have helped the Driver and that it had been done to simply produce more shocking pictures for the Media. The Tires btw. are an integral part of the Crash Design and would usually help reducing crash forces, if not placing the crash barrier explicitly between the wheels as in the test shown. However try to imagine how it would look if you run a Vespa Scooter or an ATV at 50kph into that crash barrier and you know why a Twizy is a safer Alternative. As said, don’t compare it with any other “Car”, the Twizy is not… ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Anyway in first Instance the Twizy is sold in Canada in it’s 45 kph version only, so you wouldn’t even reach the 50kph of the crash test… ๐Ÿ˜‰
    In addition, as I’m driving the Twizy80 almost 3 years now with ~30.000km on the clock I can only state it as a very safe ride which always feels very safe when driving it. The steering is very responsive and quick, the brakes can be perfectly controlled, it’s making a lot of fun and in fact with it’s low center of gravity you can circle around corners at much higher speeds as most people would usually do in a “normal car”, however a bit hard on the dampers (btw. Sir Stirling Moss is using it in London City almost every day, but he has ordered Bilstein to make the Dampers and Springs more comfortable). I never entered any uncontrollable situation (except you try Summer Tires on Icy Roads etc…). No electronic gimmicks, it’s just pure driving nothing else.

    Greetings from Germany

    1. K-lein says:

      About the doors.
      They’re an optional extra, Renault sells the Twizy without doors. Which means Renault feels their product it safe without them.
      It seems natural for Euroncap to test it without doors.

      Same logic as the BMW i3 and the rear passenger seat belt warning thing.

      1. Dexter says:

        Not the doors are an option, you can choose between the Twizy frame with or without doors. The frames are different, you cannot add doors later on to a doorless or vice versa.

        Thus it’s also clear the test should’ve been done with a doorless frame if they really wanted to test a doorless Twizy.

        Fact is there are more dubious things visible in the video, i.e. the driver seat position is clearly too far to the front, noone would drive that way. With a normal position, the knees wouldn’t have been hurt that much.

        And while the Twizy safety is (of course) in no way comparable to a normal size car, the test results still showed the Twizy to be the safest in its class.

  9. Priusmaniac says:

    No crumple zone is obviously deadly. Even more so at a more realistic 100 Km/h impact speed.

  10. Jack says:

    Btw. Crash Test at 50kph with the Renault Twizy doesn’t look that terrific if you don’t remove the doors and whatever those guys at Euro-NCAP have done else. See yourself:


    1. sven says:

      Thanks for the video and the explanation in your first post!

  11. Repoman says:

    At the end of the day, it’s a niche vehicle. I also run two trikes, and two smart cars. If I worried about safety on my trikes, I wouldn’t ride them. They are fun vehicles, that is all. I have bought the twizy as a commuter vehicle, and I’d rather be in an accident in that than on the scooters I used to ride to and from work.