Fourteen-year-olds in France and across the European Union are now legally able to drive the all-electric Renault Twizy, thanks to newly introduced legislation regarding piloting light quadricycles.
Following a decision by the European Union to harmonise driving licences across its 28 member states, France has adapted its own light quadricycle regulations allowing 14-year-olds holding a road safety certificate or Brevet de Securite Routiere (BSR) to drive light motorised quadricycles such as the entry-level Renault Twizy 45.
An alternative previously only available for those aged 16 and above, the new legislation means young road users are no longer restricted to two-wheeled vehicles such as mopeds and scooters.
Limited to a top speed of 45km/h, the two-seat rear-wheel-drive Renault Twizy 45 has a 4kW electric motor and comes standard with an airbag, double seatbelts, four-wheel disc brakes and a protective safety cell. Neither anti-lock brakes (ABS) or electronic stability control (ESC) are offered.
Despite Renault's claim that around 15,000 Twizys are now on roads across Europe, Renault Australia is unable to offer the tiny French EV to local buyers as no such classification for quadricycles exits under the Australian Design Rules (ADRs).
Back in October 2014 at our first Australian drive of the Twizy, the local division’s corporate communications and sponsorship manager Emily Fadeyev told CarAdvice that when it comes to getting the Twizy on Aussie roads, “We’re talking years not months.”
Contacted for a fresh update of the situation, Fadeyev told CarAdvice little has changed over the last five months.
"At this stage there is no category for homologation and registration for Twizy in Australia,” Fadeyev said.
“We have had some discussions to look at introducing a new category, however, this is a very slow process."
In Europe, Twizy pricing starts at 6990 euro ($9710), not including a monthly battery lease charge of 50 euro ($69).