Renault has reinvented its best-selling Clio by refining its good looks and giving it a hefty dose of technology
Following a reveal of its high-tech interior yesterday, Renault has officially unveiled its fifth-generation Renault Clio subcompact hatchback.
The styling of the new Clio is certainly more upmarket and evolutionary in nature, but draws inspiration from its Megane sibling. Designed according to the “Evolution and Revolution” principle, the front gains prominent C-shaped headlights and defined bonnet creases– a clear ode to the Megane, more sculpted lines, whilst its taillights appear to closely resemble those seen on the Kadjar SUV. For the first time ever, the Clio comes equipped with air deflectors on the front wheel arches to reduce fuel consumption, while full-LED headlights are standard even on the base model.
The interior though, is a significant departure from the model it replaces. Dubbed a ‘Smart Cockpit’, the cabin is dominated by a brand new portrait-orientated, 9.3-inch touchscreen, which is twice the size of the previous screen and the biggest ever in a Renault. Angled towards the driver, the screen, with its new EASY LINK connected system, comprises all the multimedia, navigation and infotainment features as well as the MULTI-SENSE settings, all of them remarkably simple to use. The Clio also features a TFT digital instrument cluster for the first time, available from 7 to 10-inches.
Clio V will ride on the Renault–Nissan–Mitsubishi Alliance’s CMF-B platform, and once again share its underpinnings with the Nissan Micra. This platform is able to integrate the latest technologies to respond to new market requirements, i.e. Electric technology. Interestingly, the Clio V is actually shorter than its predecessor – by 14mm. That said, the 4048mm long Clio is 66mm wider than the Clio IV, meaning a more spacious interior. Loading space has also been improved to 391 litres up from 300 litres. Renault is also quick to point out that the new Clio boasts an extra 26 litres of additional storage space throughout the cabin.
New to the range is the sporty RS Line trim specification which replaces the GT Line. This new trim level is inspired by Renault Sport and adds some bold styling changes – notably the ‘F1 blade’ and honeycomb grill up front, sportier bumpers, and model specific 17-inch alloy wheels. The interior also gets the treatment with an RS-badged perforated leather-wrapped sport steering wheel, heavily bolstered sport seats and aluminium pedals. Rounding off the tweaks is the red topstitching complemented by the red edging – something we have seen in the Megane RS 280.
“The fifth-generation Clio is very important for us as it is the best-seller in its segment and the second best-selling car in Europe, all categories combined. The Clio is an icon, and the latest features the very best of the previous generations. The exterior design of Clio IV won over our customers and continues to do so today, so we chose to keep that DNA while bringing modernity and elegance to the new model. The interior has undergone a true revolution, with a considerable improvement in perceived quality, greater sophistication and technology. It is the best Clio ever,” said Laurens van den Acker, Senior Vice President, Corporate Design.
Renault has yet to reveal any technical specs on the new Clio, but will when it has its first public outing at March’s Geneva International Motor Show. Renault South Africa are planning to launch the all-new Clio V towards the end of 2019.