Renault to make car you can drive legally without a licence
Renault has said that in 2013 it will introduce a Twizy that a 16-year-old will be able to drive without a full driving licence. It's because it will be so light and low on power that it can be officially classified a quadricycle.
The Twizy is Renault's new two-seat electric city car, which as you can see from the picture above will be unlike any production car there's ever been when it
It's a car self-evidently created for an inner city environment, so with that in mind, Renault reckons it'll make the perfect yoof runabout.
Talking to Autocar, Renault's Andy Heiron explained a version of the Twizy could fit into the new 'quadricycle' category due to come in 2013, restricted to vehicles with a 28mph top speed and paltry 350kg kerb weight.
Drivers would still have to take a "basic theory and practical test," according to Heiron, but it means that a 16-year-old would be able to drive it. As would, of course, anyone else - with or without a proper UK driving licence.
There are some issues, however, one of which is insurance: the average 16-year-old running a Twizy as a sort of posh BMX is likely to be hit with a circa-£4,000 annual insurance premium.
Added to the £6,000 the limited Twizy is likely to cost, that's £10,000 for a year's dawdling about town. You could buy a lot of bus passes and Pokemons for that.
The full fat Twizy goes on sale in January 2013, priced from £7,000 plus an obligatory £40 per month battery lease cost with a three-year standard agreement.
It weighs 450kg and has a 50mph top speed, meaning Renault will have to shave a hefty 100kg of its mass and shackle it by 22mph to get it down to quadricycle spec.
A smaller battery and electric motor should partly do the trick, but it's difficult to see how Renault could get much more weight out of the body.