WHERE DOES IT FEEL AT HOME?
The Clio is a charming little car, suited to the fashion-savvy and those who, like me, enjoy a weekend drive. The entry-level models are especially fun around town if you’re prepared to shift gears yourself and get a manual transmission.
WHAT IT’S MADE FOR
Renault’s range of Clio models covers a lot of ground. If you’re after a small runabout take a look at the Authentique, Expression and Dynamique models. Above them is the GT and the RS for those who want to get even more out of the Clio driving experience. All models are impressively flexible, with even the highly-strung performance models proving very liveable day-to-day.
STAND OUT FEATURES
Fundamentally, the Clio platform is great to drive. The seating position is just right, the suspension is good and the steering is sharp. It’s practical too, with five doors, a roomy feel and good boot space for this segment. We like its hidden rear door handles and the Renault card key.
The Clio’s classy, avant-garde interior is a plus. Its striking exterior makes the Clio a bit of a statement, and we like that too. The tiny turbocharged three-cylinder engine in the entry level models is incredibly fuel efficient, while the top-end Renaultsport models are up there with the most exciting hatches on the market.
THINGS WE'D LIKE TO CHANGE
On the downside, we find the Clio’s automatic gearbox to be slow to react off the line. That might not sound so bad, but it means you have to second-guess gaps in traffic quite a lot. One of the quirkiest features in the Clio is it’s ‘sound imitator’ which uses the car stereo to imitate the engine note of some classic Renault vehicles, a motorbike and even a Jetsons-esque spaceship.
WHO WILL IT SUIT?
The Clio is a great option for those who like to stray away from the typical choices. It’s full of European flair and genuinely impressive driving dynamics that make it an enjoyable car to drive as well as a practical one.
Click here to find out more about the Renault Clio.