Renault Wind Gordini roadster
Feel the air in your hair
Speaking of which, with 270 litres available - albeit with a couple of bracing struts getting on the way - you can get a fair amount into the Wind’s rear storage. There’s even a full-sized spare wheel under the floor, which surprised me.
Another benefit of the Targa-esque design is the general lack of buffeting when driving with the roof down. Even at speeds of up to 60mph you can hear the stereo and don’t reach your destination looking like you’ve been standing in a wind tunnel that’s been running at full chat.
The white Gordini highlights look the biz
Behind the wheel, you find yourself sitting low but not too low. Which is just as well because the thick frame of the windscreen and the buttress-like B-pillars don’t do any favours for visibility, especially over the shoulder. Going backwards in a Wind is a bit like trying to reverse an Atlantic Wall pillbox.
The cabin itself is comfortable and surprisingly spacious, but Renault seems to have forgotten that drivers have personal possessions because there is nowhere to put a mobile phone or wallet let alone a cup of coffee or bottle of water. Yes, there is a parcel shelf behind the seats, but if anything slides along it you need the arms of a Gibbon to retrieve it.
One piece roof neither up nor down
Also rather strangely, the 12V power outlet is hidden away in the glove box. And I’m not sure I’d be happy shutting the lid on my phone’s charge cable over an extended period of time.
What the Wind really delivers is cheap open-air driving. Even in Gordini trim, the Wind is cheaper to the tune of £1500 than the Peugeot 1.6-litre 207CC and it’s really no sacrifice to go for the entry-level version, which, at only £12,995, is the open-air motoring bargain of the decade.
The ageing and cheap underpinnings may show through in places, but as an affordable and sporty little drop-top the Wind Gordini takes some beating. With it’s unique looks and new, overtly Gallic racing livery and interior, it looks and feels the part while the simple roof mechanism should allay fears of the mechansim jamming. ®
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Tech TDI 140