The range-topping Gordini had the biggest kit list, with cruise control, climate control, heated mirrors, leather seat trim and metallic paint included, while the limited-run, Cup-chassised Silverstone GP edition from 2011 holds extra rarity appeal, with its silver paint, stainless steel exhaust and black wheels, spoiler and roof. There’s no need to pay particular attention to the age of each model when browsing. A facelift in 2012 brought a new yellow paint scheme and a bigger spoiler, but virtually all of the oily bits were unchanged.
The 133 can now be picked up for a tenth of its original price if you look hard enough. Newer standard cars are available from around £4000, but while the Cup is the most sparsely equipped model (barring the extremely limited Silverstone GP spec), it’s well worth hunting for if you’re seeking an agile and exciting road racer. That’s if you don’t mind ruining a few T-shirts because of the lack of air-con… It’s a sacrifice worth making for one of the best small performance cars you can buy.
How to get one in your garage
An expert’s view
David Kirk, K-TEC Racing
“Engines are strong and reliable, as are the gearboxes, and we see several cars that are used regularly on track without any issues at all. As an entry into the world of Renault Sport ownership, it really is a great place to start. They’re fantastically agile and capable little cars, with great handling with the Cup chassis, and its engine is keen when revved. They really do live up to the term ‘pocket rocket’… We have had great success tuning them with remaps, exhaust and camshaft upgrades and have seen over 160bhp.”