We’re passionate about Renault vehicles and knowing what goes in to keep them driving excellently! We found this insightful article and thought you’d enjoy it too!

It’s hardly surprising Renault gave us a high-performance Megane 220 RS model so we could rock up at the Renault F1 team headquarters in deepest Oxfordshire. The car drives like a go-kart and takes us through the sharp countryside curves like it’s on rails before spitting us out in the car park of Enstone.

This is the former site of a stone quarry and has been the home of a Formula 1 team since 1992. It’s also prime British countryside, so the facility has had to be built into, rather than on top of, the old industrial site. Enstone is decidedly low rise, with some sections actually built underground. And expansion has had to be smart, innovative and eco-friendly in order to happen at all.

A short while later we’re talking with new recruits from the Renault Sport Academy, who coincidentally have all built up their driving skills as youthful go-kart drivers. The guys are young – so young in fact that one of them has yet to pass his test to drive a car on the road. After a quick retrospective on the facility and Renault’s plans for the future, as part of a six-year vision for winning, we head towards the HQ’s inner sanctum.

We see some genuinely amazing things during our tour of the Enstone facility. However, the midway point around the transmission that’s made from carbon fibre is probably the most jaw-dropping moment of the trip. It looks like some weird alien creation, a cocktail of carbon fibre and metal that feels like it could bite you. But, it’s just one of many components in an F1 car, 14,500 actually, all of which are designed using a formidable cocktail of computing power, traditional craftsmanship, and ingenuity.

To kick things off, though, we walk past rooms chock full of computers and monitors. It could be any office, to be honest. But then you see what the engineers and technicians are poring over onscreen in the design office. Here, workers who comprise just a fraction of the 700 or so employees, start fleshing out the initial details for what will become the next F1 car. While sometimes they retain bits of what has gone before, most of it is created from scratch.

As our guide points out, building F1 cars isn’t an easy or straightforward business. It takes around 150,000 hours and 19,000 CAD drawings in order to define what it’ll actually be like. Plans change by the day, sometimes by the hour, so the workforce has to be dedicated and prepared to pitch in whenever. You really get to see tangible evidence of this in the machine room later on, where a wall-mounted monitor displays the status of jobs. The progress curve sounds rather fluid, to say the least.

The willingness to go the extra mile for the cause is also flagged up in the comms room next door to the design office. It’s a darkened area, again, full of monitors, keyboards and a wall of big screens. This is like mission control for race days, where staff at the HQ can pitch in by being connected to their colleagues at any given Grand Prix and offer advice, updates and anything else needed in real-time. And that goes on no matter what the time difference or location of the race.

Through another door and we get to drill down into the core of the facility. There’s a room where we find a steering wheel which can cost between £35 and £45K. We also get a mind-blowing breakdown of the features and functions that an F1 driver has to operate in fractions of a second. It’s enough to make you weep if you struggle basics like setting your cruise control on the way home from work. It’s at this point most of us on the tour realise that F1 drivers earn their big-money wages justifiably, and then some.

Heading down some steps we gather around the skeleton of one of the cars. It’s a maze of cables, wires, connectors and lots of carbon fibre. In fact, Renault says that around 18km of the black stuff is used by the team during the course of a season. Much of the car is assembled by hand too, although the technology is such now that computers work out the best way to lay the carbon fibre matting to achieve maximum strength.

There’s a whole fabrication department inside Enstone, with clinical operating conditions that mean workers have to wear paper suits and hairnets to avoid any foreign objects entering the almost sterile environment. Elsewhere, alongside the machine shop, there are two Breton machines. These amazing creations allow the team to quickly, and more importantly accurately produce components in a fraction of the time it took before.

Testing is another critical aspect of the F1 car build. The Enstone facility has another awesome technical arrangement for this. The 7-post-rig is an area where cars can be placed on a collection of moving plates. The rig is subsequently able to replicate any course the cars race on, right down to the last little nuances of the circuit layout. Not only is this vital for current cars, it’s hugely beneficial for the development of future incarnations too.

We round out our tour of Enstone with a look at the driver-in-the-loop simulator, which is an incredibly advanced facility for developing not only the cars but also drivers, engineers, and designers. Similarly impressive is the huge wind tunnel that allows the team to test cars and components. Pitch, roll, ride height, downforce and the deformation of tyres are just a few of the issues analysed in the tunnel. However, there’s an additional tech twist in the shape of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD).

In short, this is the part of the F1 equation that relies on supercomputers and cutting-edge software – located in the underground part of the facility. This aspect of the R&D allows engineers to simulate the complexities of airflow in and around the car. It’s kinda like a virtual wind tunnel. It’s also great at amassing data, with 60TB of data produced with ease over the course of a typical week. And, in a world where increasingly the power is in the data, that’s critical in working out where the Renault team are going to be heading next.

Interestingly, Enstone has attracted a lot of partners and collaborators over the years, and Renault still works closely with many of them. Microsoft supplies much of the software and hardware backbone, but the facility also has strong ties with Boeing. Being connected with the aerospace industry makes perfect sense as there is much here that is created with the same tolerances. In fact, as our guide points out, they’ve probably got more in common with planes than cars, such as the complexity packed inside an F1 car. We weren’t about to disagree either.

If you’re looking for a service center that offers the best Renault service – to keep your favourite vehicle running like an F1 race car – book your service at Group 1 Renault.

Article source: https://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2019/07/what-it-really-takes-to-make-renaults-f1-cars-go-fast/

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Renault’s all-new Sandero Stepway Plus makes a great little getaway car

Over the course of a sunny weekend, I was fortunate to drive the new the Renault Sandero Stepway during an awesome road trip along the West Coast. This was a new experience for me where I was able to experience a vehicle specially designed for safe and comfortable driving. 

I find the new design of the Renault Sandero for sale to be more appealing than the previous models thanks to its cute styling, especially at the front.

While driving along the West Coast road and throughout Langebaan, I began to see more and more Stepway models around, realising how popular this vehicle actually is. 

It felt awesome being the only one with the latest variant with its sporty roof racks.

The side profile of the Sandero is really unique and its 16″ unique rims adds a dash of charm to this city slicker.

This model is ideal for getaways and carting around a small family for a weekend, especially where boot space is concerned. The Stepway Plus also has a rear-parking camera, to aid the driver when reversing.

I love how Renault gave the Sandero Stepway a face-lift; the grille, as well as large Renault badge in front, gives it a fierce and assertive look. 

The 3-cylinder, 66kW, 0.9-litre turbo motor is eerily silent when idling though quite nippy and fun for a 900cc. The Stepway handles the long-road quite well with it’s 5-speed ‘box, and a claimed fuel consumption of 5.4 litre/100km by the automaker.

The charcoal coloured interior is quite eye-catching with its red trimming, a leather steering wheel, electric windows, and aircon. What I love most is the cruise control, along with a speed limiter that beeps to warn you when you are driving above the speed limit or if there is a speeding camera up ahead.

The radio/CD player features with Aux connectivity, Bluetooth, USB and a navigation system. The audio controls are behind the steering wheel, and this is an ideal safety feature when you are driving, creating hands-free calls and scrolling through music.

Renault offers a 5-year warranty as well as a 2-year service plan, along with a year of insurance. If you are worried about parts, Renault offers a mobility solution if your required items need to be imported. 

Overall, I found the Sandero Stepway Plus to be a fun, yet safe vehicle. If you need to spend less on fuel a month, this would be the right vehicle for you. I can’t wait to see what Renault has in store for us next when it comes to our daily commute in a safe, comfortable, and fuel efficient driving. 

Test drive the Renault Sandero today at Group 1 Renault today and experience the thrill of this great vehicle first hand!

 


Article source: https://www.wheels24.co.za/NewModels/renaults-all-new-sandero-stepway-plus-makes-a-great-little-getaway-car-20190709

 

Here’s why the Renault Sandero is a great car for child safety

Shopping for a new or second-hand vehicle has seen requirement priorities change over the years, especially when the consumers are parents. Things like good looks and power figures are swapped out for safety features and driving aids.

Child occupant safety has become an important factor in safety crash test ratings as well. The new Renault Sandero Stepway Plus would probably not be the first car you would think of when you’re considering vehicle safety, and especially the safety of your offspring should a collision occur.

We’ve all seen the aftermath of a crashed vehicle, or worse, witnessed a crash. It’s not something you would want to think about but, it does help knowing there are cars available in our local market that has a very high child safety rating in the event of a crash.

The Sandero has been rated best in class safety in 2017, further endorsed by a Global NCAP 4-star rating for child protection, that’s even one more than its adult protection rating with three stars. The Sandero Stepway Plus, as well as the rest of the range, has front airbags, ABS, electronic brake distribution (EBD), electronic brake assist (EBA), electronic stability program (ESP), ASR, and hill start assist is standard across the range, further endorsed through 2017 Global NCAP 4-star rating for child protection.

As a mother to a little one, that gives me peace of mind when I’m driving the vehicle. Of course, this all means your child needs to be safely secured and strapped in a child seat, else the rating is null and void. 

No matter how safe a vehicle is, and how many features it has, strapping your children in correctly is imperative. The Sandero Plus has Isofix anchorages in all the passenger seats for child seats to be secured. The passenger airbag can also be deactivated when there is a younger child strapped in a baby seat in the front of the vehicle.


According to the Global NCAP: “The Sandero achieved a three-star rating for adult occupant protection in the frontal crash test at 64km/h. The vehicle structure was rated as stable, offering acceptable general adult occupant protection. The car did not include seatbelt pretensioners. Using the child seats recommended by Renault, the Sandero achieved a four-star rating for child occupant protection.

 

If you want to experience the Renault Sandero first hand – book a test drive at Group 1 Renault today!
Article source: https://www.wheels24.co.za/News/Guides_and_Lists/heres-why-the-renault-sandero-is-a-great-car-for-child-safety-20190621

Revamped Renault Captur takes on a multitude of rivals

The Captur, Renault’s smallest crossover, has so many rivals on the market – can it compete?

What is it?

The compact Renault Captur for sale has been around for a little while now, and that’s why the French manufacturer has deemed it fit for an update. There’s good reason, too; the compact crossover segment is growing steadily by the day, and consumers are savvier than ever – so any car not worth its salt will start faltering in the dealerships.

Though it’s based on the same platform as the Clio, the Captur is able to offer a touch more space than its hatchback cousin, along with that all-important bump in ride height so wanted by buyers today. Back in 2016 the Captur was Europe’s best-selling urban crossover, so it’s understandable why the changes aren’t ground-breaking.

What’s new?

Renault hasn’t messed with the Captur’s formula too much – this is a mid-life facelift, after all – which is why the changes to the exterior are blink-and-you’ll-miss-them subtle. You’ve got C-shaped LED daytime running lights up front (bringing it closer in line to the larger Kadjar) and there are LED lights at the rear too.

You’ve got a wider choice of alloy wheels to pick from as well, and there are redesigned kick plates in place to give the Captur a chunkier, more go-anywhere look.

What’s under the bonnet?

Powering our test car was a dinky 0.9-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine with 89bhp and 140Nm. Renault claims that it’ll power the Captur to 60mph in 12.9 seconds, and onwards to a 106mph top speed.

Sending power to the front wheels through a five-speed manual ‘box, it’ll return a claimed 52.3mpg combined, while emitting 122g/km CO2.

A diesel variant is available, again packing 89bhp, while there’s a more powerful petrol available too with just shy of 150bhp. It’s the only the latter powertrain that’s available with an automatic gearbox, should that be something you’re after. It means there’s a pretty decent spread of engine options available, providing something for nearly everyone.

What’s it like to drive?

Take one glance at the engine specs for the Captur and it’s immediately obvious that it’s not going to set the tarmac alight. Though the forward progression isn’t swift by anyone’s standards, there’s enough puff to merge on to a motorway safely – though once you’re there, you’ll need to drop a gear when overtaking.

 

How does it look?

The Captur is quite unassuming in its style. It’s not boring, and neither is it outlandish. The C-shape daytime running lights help give it a touch more presence. Chrome accents around the car do elevate it slightly, making it appear ever-so-slightly more premium. GT-Line cars, like our test vehicle, get 17-inch alloy wheels, contrast roof and door mirrors, and grey front and rear skid plates too for a little bit of that faux-SUV style.

What’s it like inside?

The interior of the Captur reflects the car’s exterior look. Everything works and is logically placed. Interior space is decent enough, and there’s a good amount of headroom available for driver and passengers – though legroom is a touch tight for adults riding in the back.

Boot space is reasonable, with 377 litres on offer with all seats in place. You can slide the rear seats forward to offer up more boot space – and there’s 455 litres to play with when you do. The rear bench also folds 60:40 to create an even larger load area.

What’s the spec like?

Our test car came in GT Line specification, and this sees the Captur fitted with all manner of standard equipment. There are a variety of chrome elements applied to areas in the cabin, while a ‘Premium Pack’ sees aluminium pedals and sunglasses storage added.

Part leather upholstery helps to lift the overall feel of the car’s cabin, too. The Captur also benefits from Renault’s R-Link infotainment system, which uses a seven-inch colour touchscreen to control aspects such as satellite navigation (a TomTom-sourced system) and smartphone integration. It’s not a terrible system, but it does lack the level of clarity and ease-of-use that we’ve come to expect from more modern systems.

You also get front and rear parking sensors which, despite being fitted to a relatively compact car, make parking the Captur a little easier.

Verdict

With such a wide array of compact crossovers on the market, it could be easy to simply dismiss the Captur. However, thanks to decent levels of standard equipment and a low list price at Group 1 Renault, it could be a good option for those who want a value-for-money runaround. An efficient range of engines and well-sized boot mean the Captur could prove to be a reliable choice for many.

Article source: https://frenchcarsfavourites.blogspot.com/2019/08/revamped-renault-captur-takes-on.html

New Renault Duster stands its ground

On the outside, it still retains robust look and changes are easy to spot.

In all honesty, the first Renault Duster wasn’t a knockout in terms of appearances, but people still bought it.

Somehow, Renault managed to sell more than two million Duster models globally and 15 000 locally which is rather impressive in a stiff market.

I travelled to Mpumalanga last week to drive the second-generation Duster which features exterior and interior tweaks from its predecessor.

Before I give opinions, I think it is best to know that the Duster is not about looking equable, it is about function and affordability. However, Renault has addressed the aesthetical issues and seem to have solved the initial problems.

It is based on the same BO platform as the outgoing model with dimensions remaining the same.

Looking on the outside, it still retains that robust look and the changes are easy to spot.

There are new wider C-shaped headlights and the bonnet features more contours, while the enlarged eight-oblong grille predominates.

At the rear are new square light clusters in a tailgate that still looks like that of the old. On the inside, it is still the Duster we know, however, build quality has improved.

The seats are more comfortable, offering better support, extra padding and more adjustability, while boot space is measured at 478 litres.

The new dashboard is a pleasure: it incorporates a higher-mounted infotainment screen which is still easy to use.

The infotainment system incorporates navigation, music and USB. And there are easily accessible stowage spaces and improved accessibility of controls.

Depending on how you like your Duster, there are three variants – Expression, Dynamique, and Prestige. In terms of engines, it comes with two fuel options and three engine options – the 1.6 four-cylinder petrol and two versions of the diesel 1.5 dCi turbo engine.

The Expression 4×2 petrol engine produces 84kW of power and 156Nm of torque.

The Dynamique 1.5 dCi churns out 66kW of power and 210Nm of torque, whereas the same motor but paired with Renault’s familiar EDC has 80kW of power and 250Nm of torque.

I did not keep an eye on the fuel consumption figures, but Renault claims the diesel 1.5dCi uses 5.1 litres per 100km whereas the 4×2 EDC and 4×4 manual versions only use 4.8 litres per 100km which is quite a charm taking into account that I averaged 5.4 litres per 100km when I drove the previous Duster with EDC in 2017.

Renault says the 4×4 version will join the line-up next year. I will only comment on the Prestige version with EDC which is what I got to drive at the launch.

Our launch included a drive through some serious gravel routes and the Duster remained steady and composed, although the front tyres tend to fight to find grip over serious bumps.

Maybe the 4×4 version will solve that. We were able to attack serious inclines and declines, thanks to the even greater off-road capabilities such as ground clearance of 210mm, MultiView Camera that allows for easy visibility of the front, rear or side terrain.

On the road where it will mostly spend its time, the Duster delivers a quiet drive, thanks to the sound-absorbing surfaces in the cabin and engine compartment from 20% to 50%.

Wind noise and tyre roar is minimal.

The tough and reasonably frugal 1.5-litre turbo diesel pulls strongly.

Passive and active safety systems come from keyless entry, Blind Spot warning, Rear Park Distance Control, Speed Limiter plus Cruise Control functions. Active safety technology is standard across the range, including a set of airbags, ABS with EBD, EBA and Hill Start Assist.

The all-new Duster model comes standard with a five year/150 000km mechanical warranty and a six-year anti-corrosion warranty.

Services take place at 15 000km intervals, and a standard three-year/45 000km service plan applies.

To test drive the Renault Duster – simply pop in at a Group 1 Renault dealership.

 

Article source: https://citizen.co.za/motoring/motoring-car-road-tests/2017496/driven-new-renault-duster-stands-ground/

New Renault Kadjar 2019 review

We’ve driven the updated Renault Kadjar to see if its updates make it worth choosing over the competition

The Renault Kadjar has always deserved serious consideration among the usual crop of family crossovers, and the latest updates raise its game further. The new engines mark the biggest improvement, and deliver strong performance with the promise of great fuel economy. Some rivals are better to drive, and some feel more special inside, but as a practical, comfortable all-rounder, the Kadjar is hard to fault.

This is the refreshed-for-2019 Renault Kadjar SUV. The C-segment crossover has been treated to a variety of tweaks to keep it fresh – vitally important, considering it sits in arguably the busiest and most competitive new car class. So are the changes enough to make it worth choosing over a SEAT Ateca, Ford Kuga or Nissan Qashqai?

As before, the Kadjar is mechanically similar to the Qashqai, and the latest updates include the same overhauled engine lineup which was recently introduced to its Nissan cousin.

The diesel range kicks off with an updated version of the existing 1.5 dCi; there’s now an Adblue filter to reduce emissions, more soundproofing around the block and a nominal power and torque increase. The old 1.6 has been redeveloped into a 1.7-litre unit which, with 148bhp on tap, is significantly more muscular than before. It’s also the only Kadjar offered with four-wheel drive and a locking differential.

But in a sign of how the market has changed within the last year or two, it’s the petrol engines that are expected to account for almost 70 percent of Kadjar sales in the UK. A new 1.3 litre turbocharged unit, co-developed with Daimler, is available in two outputs. There’s a 158bhp unit at the top of the range, and a 138bhp version driven here.

Along with the new engines, the Kadjar is treated to a styling revamp. The front grille is wider and gets new chrome inserts, and the number plate is moved upwards to emphasise the 4×4-inspired splitter. Around the back, there’s a new bumper with integrated LED reversing lights; and the brighter lighting tech is also applied to the tail lights and indicators.

The exterior changes are finished off with the introduction of a few new alloy wheel designs and three new colours: Oural Green, Highland Grey and, on the top two trim levels, Iron Blue.

Inside, Renault has made a series of small detail improvements. They don’t transform what is still a slightly bland cabin, but the changes are all positive. The redesigned seats, for example, are more supportive than before (particularly at the sides), there’s a new sliding centre armrest, while illuminated window switchgear from the Megane looks more expensive. The centre console cup holders are an improvement on before, but still comically shallow.

The new climate controls are great, too: three big dials each have built-in screens to show temperature and blower direction. They’re dead easy to use and look much better than before.

The touchscreen, now installed flush to the dash, looks much tidier and is more responsive to the touch. It’s just a shame that it’s still hampered by the same slow loading times, clunky menus and messy graphics. At least Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard across the range now.

Little has changed from a chassis point of view, so it’s the new engines which make the difference to the way the car drives. The news is pretty much universally positive: the 138bhp unit is much stronger than the outgoing 1.2 throughout the rev range. While it’s not the smoothest unit when revved hard, it settles down into a hushed cruise.

If anything, this version of the engine performs so well that it’s questionable whether or not the more potent option is really necessary. The 158bhp version is claimed to be 0.5 seconds quicker to 0-62mph, but the difference is barely noticeable even when the pair are driven back-to-back.

Both are available with a choice of six-speed manual or seven-speed automatic gearboxes. The manual is pleasant enough, and although the auto is easier to use around town, it can be slow to kick down when you want to accelerate or overtake.

Elsewhere, the Kadjar driving experience is as before: on the 19-inch wheel model we sampled, the ride is slightly firmer than in the Qashqai yet smoother than a SEAT Ateca. Turn into a corner and body control is reasonable, and the steering is precise enough, if offering little feel. Not fun, but perfectly adequate for a practical family car.

And that’s where the Renault fares well. It’s 472 lite boot is larger than the Nissan, and it’s got plenty of space inside for five. Back seat passengers are now treated to central air vents and a pair of USB sockets.

 

The range starts in Play trim – one of four available. Standard equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, climate control and that 7-inch touchscreen with smartphone integration. The pick of the range looks to be the Iconic, which adds 19-inch alloys, satellite navigation, a reversing camera, and lane departure warning.

And at its price, it compares very favourably with its closest rival. Compare the Kadjar Iconic with the roughly equivalent Nissan Qashqai N-Connecta with identical 138bhp engines, and the Renault is reasonably cheaper. Renault is yet to release finance deals, but even though the Nissan’s offers are very competitive at the moment, that’s a big difference if you bear in mind that the pair are much the same to drive and the Renault has more space inside.

Test drive the Kadjar and experience its power, grace and wonder for yourself, at a Group 1 Renault dealership.

 

Article source: https://joiedevivrevehicles.tumblr.com/post/183742512810/new-renault-kadjar-2019-review-weve-driven-the

Renault Clio 2018 Review

At 25 years old the Renault Clio for sale is still going strong, having undergone a number of iterations to keep up with the times. We had the chance to live with the GT-Line version of the Renault Clio TCe 90 and put it through its paces. Here’s what we thought on the areas that matter.

 

Street view

The Clio’s DNA has remained largely the same in its 25 years, the 2018 model however, is the slickest incarnation yet. Stylish and compact, this car attracts eyeballs, especially in Flame Red, the colour we had in for review. Eight other colour options are available, including a classy Iron Blue that would be my second choice.

Some people may have avoided the Clio because of its dainty shape over recent years, but this year’s 5-door frame is intentionally bolder. Even more so in the GT-Line trim, which offers 17-inch alloy wheels and chrome detailing, including chrome exhaust and dark metal door mirrors too. Arching upwards, the Clio GT’s full LED headlamps also add to the car’s bold personality. The overall look is stylish with a hint of aggression from both its side profile and head on.

 

Interior

Cloth covered seats and synthetic leather great you when you open the door. The seats are designed to look sporty and provide adequate back support. There’s a black velvet option with red piping that works well and would be my preferred choice, particularly if you’ve gone for the one of the two red paint jobs.

There’s plenty of room in the front for people with longer legs and wide shoulders and the seats are easily adjusted. I found a comfortable driving position within seconds of sitting in this car for the first time. There isn’t much storage upfront though, which may be a plus for some who want to avoid filling their car with tat. But as someone who carries at least two phones, water and often wears accessories like hats/glasses, there wasn’t always enough space to store everything securely. The glovebox is quite small and the central and side compartments don’t fit much more than two phones, and a water bottle or small brolly. Additionally, slope of the car limits headroom for particularly tall people who are forced to sit in the rear. With that said, it’s a spacious-looking cabin with some modern materials and design flourishes, but it’s not the fanciest in its class.

 

Boot Space

 

The Clio offers average boot storage for its class, which is in line with what you’d expect from a small car. However, if you do need a bit of extra room the rear seats can be folded forward, but annoyingly don’t collapse flat. In general use, this isn’t an issue but it may be a challenge if you have to make a trip to a Swedish flat pack furniture store.

 

Tech

 

The Clio GT has a 7-inch R-Link multimedia touch interface, with Android Auto and basic but clear graphics. Navtech satellite navigation and bluetooth connectivity come as standard. Its hands-free keycard with push-to-start functionality is also a nice touch. USB and AUX sockets are available for external audio sources. It also has a DAB/FM/AM radio, which is intuitive to programme with your favourite stations.

 

Two premium tech packs give you a choice between audio by BOSE or Arkamys. Even if you want to save a couple of hundred pounds and skip the BOSE option, the Arkamys audio is still pretty decent and gives a full sound without the need for blasting music at full volume. If you’re not the most confident parker, this car comes with rear parking sensors for support. Additionally, rear view visibility from its central and electronically-powered side mirrors is adequate enough to provide good visibility of the car’s position.

 

Headlights, wipers and climate can function on automatic mode, but they are all easy to adjust manually with straightforward controls. All comfortably within reach. The same can’t be said for the stereo controls, which are oddly tucked behind the steering wheel out of plain view. However, I did get used to operating them by feel within a couple of drives.

 

Driving

This car is an ideal runabout for city or small town living. It comfortably fits down narrow roads and is a breeze to park in most spaces. I’d usually be reluctant to drive a compact car like this across country, but the Clio GT holds its own in the fast lane. At top speeds, the Clio feels stable and handles weaving roads with composure. It also does a fair job of keeping road noise from becoming a distraction when on the motorway. Its 0.9-litre petrol engine climbs through five gears with a decent amount of grunt from 2,250rpm. Although when facing hills, I did find myself having to drop into second to give it a hand.

If you live in a place with a lot of steep hills, like Bristol or High Wycombe, you may want to go for a Diesel option, which offers significantly more torque 220 (Nm) vs 140 at 2,250rpm. With a maximum speed of 110mph and decent fuel economy, this car in this configuration is more than adequate for commuters and people who may want to go on the occasional road trip.

 

Safety

 

All of the features you’d expect are here; including seatbelt reminder, emergency brake assist, deadlocking, cruise control and speed limiter, as well as electronic stability and traction control. To protect you incase of a collision there are six airbags covering the front and side of the head and anti-whiplash headrests. Additionally, both of the rear outer seats have ISOFIX child seat anchoring points if babies are a thing in your life.

However, some of the competition are offering more advanced safety features as standard, including auto-emergency braking, advanced vision sensors and parking cameras.

 

Verdict

Overall, I really enjoyed my time with the GT-Line Clio 2018. It exceeded expectations. I like a car that makes a good impression at first glance and this one handles as pleasantly as it looks.

 

Experience the Renault Clio first hand at a Group 1 Renault dealership with a test drive!

 

Article source: http://heddmagazine.com/2018/10/18/renault-clio-2018-review/

 

5 REASONS THE NEW KWID BEATS THE COMPETITION

5 REASONS THE NEW KWID BEATS THE COMPETITION

The Renault KWID has just landed in South Africa and in many instances has elbowed its way to the front of the compact queue.

Here are five compelling reasons to get behind the wheel of the new Renault KWID:

  • Free Insurance (for a year)

First time buyers and those who are on a tight budget, free insurance for a year can provide much needed breathing space when taking on a big investment, such as buying a new car. A conservative insurance premium for around R500/month equates to a R6000 saving for the first 12 months of ownership.

  • Ground Clearance and Trendy Crossover Styling

Because Renault KWID is modelled around a compact crossover, the 180mm ground clearance allows inexperienced drivers the freedom to make little mistakes. Whether you’re touching the pavement with a tyre or ramping a speedbump by mistake, parking on the grass at “Uni” or taking a gravel shortcut, KWID takes all of this every day mayhem in its stride, making it a compelling choice for parents or students wanting a robust, attractive and modern vehicle.

  • Interior Space

With height adjustable front seats and spacious rear leg and head room, KWID’s crossover roots once again give it an advantage over its competitors.  Add to that the 300 litres of available stowage and you’re looking at a class leader

 

  • The Engine

The 999cc 3-cylinder engine pushes out 50kW and, with KWID’s weight being just 700kg, it has one of the best in class power-to-weight ratios. This all adds up to a respectable claimed fuel consumption figure of 4.7 litres/100 km.

  • Class-leading in-car Technology

Bluetooth, aircon, USB and modern interior all come standard in the new Renault KWID.  Another first in this segment is the 7” Touchscreen MediaNav Multimedia system. Electric power steering, digital dashboard and electric front windows round off a spec list that wouldn’t be out of place a few segments up.

Modern and wearing a badge that has earned a reputation for innovative technology without attaching the lofty price tag, the Renault KWID is on sale at Group 1 Renault  in Expression and Dynamique specification.

 

Article source: https://frenchcarsfavourites.blogspot.com/2019/01/5-reasons-new-kwid-beats-competition.html

New 2018 Renault Duster SUV: Full details and specs

All-new Dacia/ Renault Duster SUV gets a pair of punchy turbo petrol engines and extra infotainment features for 2019

Two new petrol engines have been added to the Duster range, broadening the appeal of the budget SUV. The new 1.3-litre turbo unit will be available in two guises, replacing the old 123bhp 1.2-litre from early 2019.

The entry-level turbo petrol engine is a 1.3-litre motor with 128bhp and 240Nm of torque. Performance figures haven’t been revealed, but it’s likely to be slightly faster (and slightly more economical) than the old 1.2-litre car. That means 0-62mph in around 10 seconds, and up to 50mpg. The second engine is a variation of the same unit boosted to 148bhp; the most powerful production engine ever fitted to a Renault Duster. Again, data hasn’t been revealed, but with 250Nm of torque, it’s expected to be even punchier.

Both of the turbo petrol engines will be available in 4×2 and 4×4 guises, with the former on sale from early next year. The four-wheel drive petrol cars will arrive towards the middle of 2019.

Elsewhere, the Duster will soon be available with a new infotainment system. Media Nav Evolution adds Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, as well as a more responsive touchscreen with faster menu access. Again, pricing hasn’t been announced, but it’s likely that the new system will only be standard on the very top-spec Duster models.

Of course, the second-generation Duster is still available with the familiar 1.6-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine and a single 108bhp diesel. Four trim levels are offered to Duster buyers: Access, Essential, Comfort, and Prestige.

All Dusters come as standard with LED daytime running lights, 16-inch steel wheels, electric front windows, an engine immobiliser, automatic door locking, Emergency Brake Assist, new full-length curtain airbags, and two ISOFIX points in the rear.

Essential spec models feature body coloured front and rear bumpers, manual air conditioning, heat adjustable driver’s seat, DAB radio, and Bluetooth. Comfort spec adds 16-inch alloy wheels, a leather steering wheel, seven-inch touchscreen, and heated electric mirrors. Range-topping Prestige models benefit from larger 17-inch ‘Diamond-cut’ alloys, a multi-view camera, blind spot warning, climate control, and keyless entry.  


The SUV is based on the same platform as the outgoing car, making it almost identical in terms of dimensions. However, the marque’s design boss, Laurens van der Acker, says every body panel is new.

As part of the overhaul, the new Duster has reprofiled side panels, along with a wider wheel base to ensure the wheels fill the arches better. Also, on a more practical note, the windscreen has ventured forward 100mm to increase space. The bonnet and belt-line have been raised up, giving a secure feel for occupants, and the tail-lights have been pushed out to each corner.

In the cabin, the interior has been overhauled extensively with a brand new dashboard layout, new materials, and new technology. The new dashboard makes use of cleaner surfaces and repositioned air vents, alongside fresh instruments and a new steering wheel. The centre console is angled towards the driver, with the infotainment system positioned higher up. Elsewhere inside, Dacia (Renault) has introduced new seats, and the interior storage spaces have been revised to inject additional practicality.

Dacia/ Renault bosses expect the new model to retain a three-star Euro NCAP crash-test rating. However, an optional safety pack will be made available, bringing autonomous braking and another active tech. This is likely to add another star to its score.

Get Into A Duster

Test drive the Renault Duster at your nearest Group 1 Renault dealership and experience this powerful vehicle from behind the wheel.
Article source: http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/dacia/duster/99632/new-2018-dacia-duster-suv-full-details-prices-pics-and-video

The Renault Clio is impressive in small hatchback class

The Renault Clio is a hot cake

The French brand is an exceptional one due to its simplicity, reliability and practicality. Though getting aged but its popularity graph is still high among small hatchback class. It’s comparatively good, is wide and has spacious interior with economical engines that offer a good driving experience too its users.

 

The interior of Renault Clio is simple but a reasonable one

The edge that Renault Clio has on its rivals is of its good, simple and reasonable interior that is not fussy at all and the manufacturer seems not in the try to impress the audience by pouring lot of equipment, systems and controls in its small interior.

The Clio offers a good driving experience with noise free interior. The material is of good standard and well knitted. The plastic material along with metal touches gives the interior a classy look. The steering is of good weight gives good handling and accurate driving experience.

The power train of Renault Clio is good enough to support this hatchback

There are good and efficient petrol and frugal diesel engines for Renault Clio. Though not with extra and gigantic power, but reasonable in response and offer smooth driving experience.

Renault Clio is not a big hatchback so its engine range is rightly compatible with its smaller body design and built. All engines produce fluent and smooth power rather than bombastic sprint with extra brisk and speed.

Renault Clio enjoys a good variety of diesel engine

The diesel engine range of this hatchback starts with 1.5 litre dCi unit. It is capable of 88bhp and 162lb/ft torque. It is a four-cylinder and eight-valve engine, perfect match with Renault Clio’s small built.

It takes 11.6 seconds to get from 0-62m/h with top speed of 112m/h. It offers massive fuel average of 85m/g with just 85g/km of CO2 emissions. It is fitted with five-speed manual gearbox and front-wheel drive unit as standard.

 

The 1.5 litre dCi unit with 110bhp version

The other diesel engine for Renault Clio is of 110bhp and 192lb/ft torque. It is available in six-speed manual gearbox rather than five-speed gearbox and front-wheel drive system as standard.

It is also a four-cylinder and eight-valve engine and takes 10.8 seconds to get from 0-62m/h with top speed of 121m/h. The fuel average is efficient one with 80m/g and CO2 emissions are 90g/km.

 

The petrol engine lineup has more option than the diesel engines

The petrol engine lineup starts with 1.2 litre unit that is of just 73bhp and 79lb/ft torque. The interesting thing of this engine is it’s built. It is four-cylinder and sixteen-valve engine rather than eight as we find in all diesels and takes 14.0 seconds to reach from 0-62m/h with top speed of 104m/h.

The fuel average is also not good as we have in diesels. It gives 51m/g of fuel average with 127g/km of CO2 emissions and is equipped with five-speed manual gearbox and front-wheel drive system.

 

The 1.2 litre with 118bhp version

The other petrol version in 1.2 litre TCE is of 118bhp and 140lb/ft torque. It is quite responsive in speed due to six-speed EDC automatic gearbox assembly and takes 9.6 seconds to get from 0-62m/h with top speed of 121m/h. The fuel average of this version is also impressive with 54m/g and emissions are 120g/km. It is fitted with front-wheel drive system as standard.

The 1.0-litre petrol engine with 88bhp version

This is a 1.0litre TCE petrol engine capable of 88bhp and 100lb/ft torque. It is three-cylinder and twelve valve engine and takes 11.8 seconds for 0-62m/h sprint with top speed of 113m/h. Renault Clio is quite feasible with this tiny unit. It offers excellent fuel average of 62m/g with 104g/km of CO2 emissions and the strange version is fitted with five-speed gearbox and front-wheel drive assembly.

The 1.6 litre TCE petrol engine with 197bhp

The Renault Clio is available with powerful petrol engines also as we have its 197bhp and 192lb/ft torque version which is fast enough to take this small hatchback from 0-62m/h in 6.5 seconds. The fuel average of this engine is 47m/g with 133g/km of CO2 emissions.

It is fitted with six-speed EDC automatic gear box and front-wheel drive system. The other version available in this 1.6-litre petrol engine is of 216bhp and 192 lb/ft torque. It is used in Renault Clio Sport Trophy model.

It takes 6.3 seconds to get from 0-62m/h. The fuel average of this engine is 47m/g and CO2 emissions are 135g/km. It is also fitted with six-speed EDC automatic transmission and front-wheel drive unit.

 

Safety and reliability

In my own opinion the Renault Clio is the safest car in small hatchback category. The French automaker has used standard safety features in its vehicle such as six airbags with extra head protection accessories.

The Renault Clio is smart enough with hill start assist system, traction control and emergency braking system. Some of its models are with day-running LED lights. There is no blind spot warning system and Clio is not equipped with latest safety features as lane departure warning system and driver alert system etc.

The Renault Clio has parking sensors and reverse camera along with LED headlights and tail lights. The Clio has secured five stars in stability control from Euro NCAP.  The design is enough solid and gives good road grip and stability in awkward situations.

 

Practicality and Boot Space

The Renault Clio is a small hatchback with good practical approach. It offer nice interior with reasonable space. Though it offers not a luxury standard of servings for its occupants, but within this size it is quite affordable.

The leg and head space at front is good but at rear the situation is just acceptable.  The seats are of good material. The dashboard is with standard equipments and practical with simple systems. The boot space is good enough anyhow Clio offers 300-litres of boot space as standard. The rear seats can be folded in 60:40 ratios and you can enjoy 1150-litres of storage capacity.

Test drive a new or used Renault Clio and experience for yourself why it is such a favourite. Simply visit Group 1 Renault online here to request a test drive.

 

Article source: http://frenchcarsfavourites.blogspot.com/2018/09/the-renault-clio-is-impressive-in-small.html