First drive: Renault Clio

The New Renault Clio

The New Renault Clio

The refreshed Renault Clio is smarter looking and comes with extra technology and new frugal engines writes Geraldine Herbert

What is it? The Clio is one of the world’s most successful cars, an impressive 13 million have been sold since it first drove off with the European Car of the Year award in 1991. The current fourth-generation range was launched in 2012.

First impressions of the new Renault Clio? Time has been good to the previous model so changes to the styling, both in the front and rear, are relatively small and include new LED headlights with C-shaped daytime running lights, front grille and rear bumper. The lines are now sharper and angular so it now more closely resembles the family look of the latest Renault models, including the all-new Megane.

What about the interior? Inside, there is nothing dramatically different – while it remains “plasticy”, the quality has improved and for the driver the information and entertainment controls are all within easy reach. There is reassuring comfort from the seats, now adorned with new fabric and reinforced, giving better support. A good mix of finishes from the brushed matte effect to the interior chrome detailing gives a quality feel throughout.

The Clio comes with a number of features generally only seen on bigger cars, including panoramic fixed glass sunroof, rear parking camera, hands-free parking, Bose premium sound pack, new R-link system for on-board connectivity and access to downloadable apps.

Under the bonnet? Two new engines have been added to the line up – a more powerful 1.5 dCi with 110 bhp which promises a frugal 3.5 litres per 100 with CO2 emissions of 90g/km, along with a 1.2 litre TCe 120 petrol. On a combined cycle Renault claims it will use 5.2 litres per 100km and emit 118g of CO2

 

Inside the new Clio

Inside the new Clio

 

Renault Clio on the road? Pick of the bunch engine wise  is the juiced-up diesel engine, with a six speed gear box and more than 20bhp above the current 1.5 offering; the sheer refinement makes it a very impressive oil-burner. The diesel option has always been the pricey choice in the range so rest assured the 1.2 petrol is a great alternative as an urban hop-about. The steering is light but direct and accurate and the suspension soaks up bumps nicely.

How much? Due here in October prices are likely to increase slightly over the current model but will be confirmed closer to the launch date.

What about my options? Standard spec on the regular Clio now includes electric windows and door mirrors, Bluetooth radio with USB port and jack socket, front/side/curtain airbags, Bass Reflex speaker system, Hill Start Assist and keyless entry. The R&GO system essentially turns your Smartphone into a navigation and infotainment system.

The Dynamique Nav grade comes with a new tablet-style integrated multimedia system controlled by a 7-inch touch screen, which provides DAB radio, Bluetooth streaming, TMC traffic information and SIRI ‘Eyes-Free’ control for compatible iPhones. There is also hands-free key card, automatic lights and wipers, and a one-touch function on the electric front windows.

A vast range of personalisation options are offered allowing every model to be made truly individual – so if you are choosing a new Clio you could be there for a while

 

3 words to describe the Renault Clio?  Fun; Stylish; Modern

For more information check out Renault.ie , the Renault Ireland facebook page, or follow them on twitter

 

Geraldine Herbert

8th August, 2016

Author: Geraldine Herbert

Contributing Editor and Motoring Columnist for the Sunday Independent and editor of wheelsforwomen. Geraldine is also a regular contributor to Good Housekeeping (UK) and to RTÉ Radio One, Newstalk, TodayFM and BBC Radio. You can follow Geraldine on Twitter at @GerHerbert1

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