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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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/