Long Term Test: Three months with the Twingo

Three months can be a long time when you’re trying to run a 17-year old French hatchback, but time has been relatively kind to the Twingo since the last long-term update.

The first task was to get it through an MOT, something that can be surprisingly difficult with a car so fragile. Checking it over before sending it off, it became clear that a couple of areas might not make it through, most notably the tyres.

The random mix of four tyres had clearly been on the car for some years as each was badly cracked, with a couple worn perilously close to the legal limit. If you’ve read my tyre safety feature, you’ll know I’m a believer in using the best rubber you can although, ironically, Continental couldn’t provide tyres to fit.

A full set of Michelin tyres would set me back £220, while four of Falken’s finest would be a more reasonable £140.

However, Landsail Tyres stepped in and offered a set of their latest tyres to be tested on the Twingo. Manufactured with an advanced silica based compound, Landsail Tyres “offer the perfect balance of all-weather performance, durability and fuel efficiency,” according to the company themselves.

Duly fitted, there’s little wrong with the tyres. Almost anything would be better than what was on there before, but the Landsail’s offer plenty of grip in the dry, cling on well in the wet and don’t seem to be wearing too quickly. More on how they get on in later reports, though.

Elsewhere, an electrical gremlin means the car occasionally fails to start. Our friendly mechanic took a look and identified a loose wire, and duly sorted that out. It’s since reoccured, but now we know where to thump.

The oil has needed a top up too. It’s getting through it perhaps a little quickly, so that’s an item to keep an eye on.

Three months in and life with the Twingo remains upbeat. A tyre purchase was expected, but just £40 on maintenance outside of that makes for cheap, and happy, motoring.

Previous spend: £550

MOT: £50
Tax: £80
Tyres: £116 (supplied compliments of Landsail Tyres for review purposes)
Oil: £20
Electrical Repair: £20

Total spend to date: £836

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Phil is a motoring writer for print and web, failed racing driver, car hoarder and banger rally competitor. Nominated for the Headline Auto Rising Star award and a MGMW member, Phil freelances for outlets as diverse as Diesel Car magazine, DAD.info and Cambridge Magazine, amongst many others. He also maintains a fleet of unloved motors, but spends most of his time driving an old Corvette.

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1 Comment

  1. It’s great to read this artical for the little twingo , we used one for Czech wrecks many years ago , it’s still in everyday use now !

    Cheers Phil

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