Tuesday, 3 July 2012 2:58 PM
So this is the new Renault Clio. I think it’s fair to say that this new Clio is a distinct design step forward with an extremely bold front-end that’s bolstered by large black-backed headlights and a huge black-highlighted Renault badge that’d probably pull your head off if you tried to wear it Beastie Boys-style!
This 5-door-only new hatch from Renault will be seen at the coming Paris Motor Show ahead of its UK dealer debut in the early part of 2013. So far, very cool, I say.
Hidden rear door handles disguise all those doors and the black and chrome “blades” detailing the door bottoms seem to define heavily curved doors leading to a high and rounded rump. At the moment it appears that a denied 3-door design doesn’t affect the new Clio’s look-appeal, and, yes, even the RenaultSport variant will feature the full number of portals.
The new Clio’s design is said to feature much inspiration from the Renault DeZir concept car and is the first new model from launch to feature new Renault’s new corporate identity.
Of course, economy and emissions will get top billing in any new supermini launch and the new Clio will be pushed by its eco-credentials. Most notably under the hood we’ll see Renault’s first 3-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine; the 0.9-litre TCe 90. I’m guessing it’ll make 90bhp; using a small and quick-spooling turbocharger to build low-revs torque for better driveability.
There will also be a 1.2 TCe 120 petrol engine and a 1.5 dCi 90 diesel motor. The fact that the new car is on average 100kg lighter than the current Clio will also help those smaller horses run harder. And, for the first time, an EDC (Efficient Dual Clutch) transmission will be offered in Renault’s top-seller. I’m guessing the RenaultSport Clio will get this quicker shifter, rumoured to be coupled to a 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol motor making around 200bhp. Yum!
Renault are expecting new Clio customers to want to personalise their new nipper, and as such will offer a full range of design-it-yourself interior colourways, finishes and fabrics. Personally, I’d go for a nice bit of tartan.
Also inside, we’ll see some fresh infotainment tech for the new Clio, with kit called the R-Link which is said to be an integrated and internet-connected touchscreen tablet. A removable tablet-like infotainment screen / headunit certainly sounds like a great idea, especially if you can use it like a tablet independently of the Clio. Further details to follow from the Paris Motor Show in late September.
By Daniel Anslow
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