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Help! My Twizy failed its MOT

My Twizy failed its MOT on brake pads, which I ordered some replacements from a an online store without issue. The issue has now arrisen that the garage are saying the front o/s brake caliper has completely seized, they’ve got it off the disc but even clamping it in a vice and applying force they can’t get it free.
To make things worse I can’t find any replacement calipers online and I dread to think how much they are from Renault.

Any ideas or suggestions greatly received.

Thanks Chris

Can not help with where to get a build kit other than from Renault but that will be far cheaper than a new caliper.
To unsieze a really bad caliper get the garage to use a grease gun, it will then move easily, probably just needs new seals, some rebuild kits also have the cylinder.

Good luck

Unfortunately I am just facing a rather large bill to have a brake caliper replaced and still awaiting the parts - it’s already been a week. The handbrake light kept coming on and I tried the various solutions recommended by our friends on the forum. It was ok for a while but then the handbrake warning light stayed on no matter what. I got to work - no handbrake at all. The recovery vehicle came and took Twizy away to my local dealership. New brake caliper and brake cable to be fitted when they get the parts. It’s expensive, but it’s the first major repair apart from the door since 2012 so I’ve known worse.

As this has happened to few, I’ll explain what I do.

Once a week I spray with WD40 the pivot point on the rear brakes.

If you stand over the rear wheel and look straight down at the back of the brakes nearest the car and get someone to apply the handbrake you should see the arm move away from the stop by upto 10mm. If nothing moves then you have the issue. When the handbrake is released the arm should return right to the stop. if not then use a screw drive etc to push the arm back to the stop. might be stiff so spray with WD and keep working until it returns on its own when brake released.

Next check other side and remember to keep lubricated.

Keeping this free also helps with range.

Another check is to feel the wheel temp. It should be cool not warm and definitely not hot after a short journey as it means the pads are rubbing on the disk all the time. I often walk round the Twizy and feel each wheel hub to see if a brake is sticking.


The other thing I do is never park the car at home with the brake on - ever. I’m lucky I guess as it sits on my garage when not in use. Leaving the brake on when you don’t need to is pointless and may have contributed to the problem reported.

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So I thought a picture was easier. But you will still need to look at the Twizy to understand it.
This is taken looking straight down at the off-side rear wheel/brake. You will see it is shiny as it had recently been oiled.

Hope it helps.

I too park with the hand brake off when it is in the garage at home. At work the brake is on as in the picture.

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Glad to hear you have still got your Twizy, but not the problems you are having.
Have to say I have been lucky with mine, I have had hardly any problems. Maybe I shouldn’t have said it because Sod’s Law something will happen now.
My Twizy is also a 2012 model with over 15K miles now. Used virtually everyday for short local journeys. I am convinced lack of use is the cause of a lot of problems.

Could be lack of use. The handbrake along with other bits need to be used. I too use my 2012 Twizy nearly every day.

The brakes need to be maintained and I have two further annouyances

  1. Heated screen switch just comes on by it’s self
  2. The drivers seat base cover has split.

Occasionally I have the same problem. What I usually do is switch off and switch on again and it’s gone.

Sometimes that works sometimes I need to waggle the whole stalk. But it isn’t enough to strip the thing down.

Thanks for sharing this

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This is why I came up with the stainless brake pistons;)
The original steel ones corrode and sieze.
Renault sure knows how to get clients back to their service centers;)


I had the same problem with my 2013 Twizy. I delivered it to the Renault dealer and got it back with no charge since this was a known issue and recall from Renault.

Did you ask the dealer?

Hey Alex, how are you? Still got your Twizy?

Martin! My dearest lad!! :wink:
Yes I sold my Twizy 2 months ago along with 2 Goldwings I had, n bought my self a Beamer i3 for further investigation in electric cars.

My plan is to start a business with parts, accessories and tuning alternatives for electric cars, n rock the world of all e- car owners :wink:

E Cars are cool! Time to make em awesome and free them from manufacturer illnesses and barricades!


You just know you will miss your Twizy.

Still have the i3 but sold the i8. Bought an AMG GTS so no hybrid there!!

Best of luck with the business and keep in touch.

Sold my i3 and got a unicorn…
A Benz B250e with Tesla Motor and battery pack.
So much better than the i3… but not a stylish :frowning:
Ya I miss my Twizy but the way I had it. Pimped.

Wouldn’t want to have one in original look.

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My Twizy (2012) failed its MOT :sob::sob::sob:. The handbrake did not work on the rear nearside.
My local garage ( not Renault) got it sorted. They said the caliper was broken. I am sure if they could be bothered they could have cleaned /WD40 it and it will work again. Anyway they had no trouble getting a new caliper from Renault (next day), cost £180.26 + VAT. They charged me £66 + VAT for labour.

My MOT is due in June and last week the handbrake lever/arm on the off-side was stuck on. As you say some WD40 and lots of operating the lever (with a bar not handbrake) to get it moving fixes it. I usually spray mine every couple of weeks but forgot!

Are you still selling parts for twizy? I want to buy the stainless pistons please.