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Monsieur Renault – With This Clio You Are Really Spoiling Us

Monsieur Renault – With This Clio You Are Really Spoiling Us

Congratulations to all our readers on being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Well done.

Perhaps they should award all European motor manufacturers a prize for making some great cars these days? For example – the Renault Clio, which has been with us for many years now and has always been considered a good, if unexciting, buy. Clio’s are a decent drive and have proved to be reliable, but now the company has looked closely at the competition and decided that it was about time Nicole and Papa’s favourite pull-mobile upped its game.

This new version really is a good looking car with the sort of design currently popular with manufacturers of small cars. It looks especially good in yellow; not a colour that suits all vehicles. Inevitably, a one litre, three cylinder motor has found its way under the bonnet with a small turbo attached. This makes for a lively 89bhp which delivers a surprisingly perky drive, much as a driver might expect from a four-pot motor.

The real talking point though will be the latest version of the established 1.5L dCI turbo engine. The company states that this improved engine will produce CO² at a low enough rate to be road tax free, deliver more torque and achieve a truly impressive 83 miles per gallon. In 2013, Renault intend to introduce an ECO version to further enhance these figures.

If that’s not enough to persuade potential buyers then the interior certainly will. On previous iterations of this car the fixtures and fittings were adequate but no more. The driver’s station in this Clio is like having your own mini-flight deck. There’s chrome and colour coding and a massive touch-screen which let’s you tinker with music, telephone and navigation as well as the almost inevitable ability to download apps. Perhaps they do one for meeting French girls. Or boys. Whatever.

If your motoring is mostly city and local then it is probably not worth paying diesel premium as the triple cylinder engine is more than up to the job; but if you’re planning to venture further afield or are a high mileage user then the diesel has got to be first choice. Don’t expect high performance but these engines won’t leave you struggling to keep up.

As has proved to be the case generally in the small car sector, the Clio is not as small as it used to be. This means that leg and headroom is improved, both front and back. It is a five door only, but with that sexier three door look thanks to hidden rear door handles. Handling has been improved thanks to a wider track and sharper steering. Other engines options will follow plus the inevitable and much anticipated RenaultSport version for the hot hatch aficionado.

All in all, Renault appear to have done the business. This is a car with something for everyone and will no doubt ring alarm bells down in the Fiesta and Polo camps. The intense competition in the small car sector can, in the long run, only be good for consumers. Long may it continue. Va Va Voom etc.

This post was written by:

- who has written 474 posts on Motor Blogger.

Geoff is a freelance writer and photographer.

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bG9nZ2VyX0xvZ28uanBnIjtpOjI7czo3MzoiaHR0cDovL21vdG9yYmxvZ2dlci5jby51ay93cC1jb250ZW50L3dvb191cGxvYWRzLzMtTW90b3JfQmxvZ2dlcl9Mb2dvLnBuZyI7fTwvbGk+PGxpPjxzdHJvbmc+d29vX3ZpZGVvX2NhdGVnb3J5PC9zdHJvbmc+IC0gQXV0byBOZXdzPC9saT48L3VsPg==