New Renault Clio MKIV First Look

One of the most recognisable silhouettes in the supermini class, has had a modern makeover. The 2012 Renault Clio MkIV, which will make its debut at The Paris Motor show in September, is sportier, meatier and sexier than its three predecessors.

There’s a lower ride height, wider tracks, wider wheel setting and, reduction between wheels and arches. VCARS.co.uk takes a closer look.

Engines

The 2012 version will feature a 899cc three cylinder petrol engine. Renault are telling anyone who’ll listen to expect performance of a 1.4-litre engine and around 89bhp.

The stop-start engine cuts consumption and that eco-approach continues throughout – taller gear ratios produce CO2 emissions of a cost-conscious 99g/km and there’s even an ‘eco mode’ that improves efficiency by another 10%. Who said green was British drivers’ least favourite car colour?

If you want a little more power (on sale in early 2013), there’s a Clio with a four-cylinder 1.2-litre petrol engine (118bhp) which replicates a 1.6 engine, Renault claim. There’s also a diesel option with a four-cylinder 1.5-litre engine (89bhp) and just 83g/km CO2.

Externals

In terms of external design, there’s new angled headlight array, slim LEDS, the badge and grille design prompted by Renault’s DeZir and Alpine 110-50 concept cars. If you want to, you can up-spec your door mirror housings, grille, panel skirts on the rear, door protectors and wheel finishes. There’s even an option on roof graphics.

Internals

The new Clio interface has 7’’ touchscreen built into the dash, voice control and TomTom navigation. There’s Renault Bass Reflex System, BlueTooth streaming for calls and MP3. Optional upgrades include door panelling, wheel, handles, gear stick, vents, seats and mats.

With all that potential tailoring, you know that someone is going to create something truly awful, but they’ll have to go some to spoil the Clio’s place in the hearts of UK drivers.

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