The Renault Clio E-Tech Hybrid
Last year marked the 30th anniversary of the iconic Renault Clio — the company’s most successful model, and the best-selling French car of all time. The Clio was first shown in 1990 at the Paris Motor Show as the replacement for the successful and popular Renault 5. Light, efficient, spacious and comfortable, the Clio’s arrival marked a pivotal moment for Renault, and would go on to become a multiple award-winner spanning five generations.
More than 15 million Clios have left production lines around the world over the last 30 years, with almost 56,000 making their way onto Irish roads and into the hearts of drivers and passengers alike.
What’s remained consistent throughout the last three decades is the Clio’s identity. It provides the kind of refinement and appeal of a larger car, but delivered in a small package that represents impressive value. The model line-up has also expanded with each version, with a range of distinct models offering something for everyone. Indeed, there has been a Clio to suit all tastes throughout the last three decades.
A New Generation of Technology
The all-new fifth generation Clio boasts technology and features found on larger and more expensive models in the Renault line-up, bringing the very best of the brand to a wider range of buyers. It has advanced driver assistance systems and full LED lighting as standard equipment across the range, the very latest infotainment systems and the most accomplished driving experience, backed up by a five-star Euro NCAP crash safety rating.
With a line-up culminating in sporty R.S. Line models, the all-new Clio boasts a more expansive range of engine options than ever before, with efficient TCe (petrol) and dCi (diesel) powertrains, bolstered by the advanced new E-tech hybrid powertrain in both self-charging and plug-in guises.
The new Clio E-Tech Hybrid can drive short distances exclusively on electric power and Renault claim that the Clio E-Tech Hybrid allows you to drive in full electric mode for up to 80% of your daily commute. The new Clio E-Tech hybrid combines cutting-edge electric and combustion engine technology with a particularly efficient automatic transmission.
This multi-mode gearbox features intuitive regenerative braking for dramatic deceleration, and it takes the wasted energy from the braking process and uses it to recharge the car's batteries.
As a result, the new Clio E-Tech hybrid consistently starts in electric drive, optimises electric driving in the city, and it boasts a silent electric experience for ultimate serenity on the move.
My test car was a Clio E-Tech Hybrid (self charging), which was finished in striking Quartz White metallic paint, with contrasing two-tone alloy wheels and tasteful lower-body decals adding terrific visual drama.
The interior of the Clio Hybrid is equally as impressive as the exterior, with a combination of light and dark colour schemes throughout the cabin. Powering the new Clio Hybrid are a pair of differntly sized electric motors and a naturally-aspirated 1.6-litre petrol engine, which produce a combined 140PS (138bhp). With the instant responsiveness of the electric motors, along with the Clio Hybrid’s standard multi-mode automatic transmission, there is no shortage of driving thrills on offer.
Using the ‘My Sense’ button to trigger ‘Sport’ mode makes the accelerator livelier, with the engine becoming more free-revving in tandem with a maximum electric boost.
However, given the nature of the Clio E-Tech Hybrid, it is more satisfying driving in such a way as to keep the digital power meter in blue (for regeneration) or green (for eco or electric driving), and seeing the EV light flicker on and off — especially driving through towns and villages — in the knowledge that emissions are as suppressed as possible. Even at motorway speeds, you will still see that tell-tale ‘EV-only’ sign flickering occasionally, principally when you are cruising steadily.
The conventionally-powered, all-new Renault Clio is a dynamic and agile car in every respect, and the good news is that the Clio E-Tech Hybrid performs every bit as good.
The ride is relaxed and comfortable, the steering light and effortless, plus there is ample head, leg and elbow room for occupants in the front and rear of the car.
Boot space in the E-Tech Hybrid is down from 391-litres (in standard petrol and diesel models) to 300-litres to accommodate the hybrid’s battery pack, but this capacity can be greatly increased by dropping the rear seats when needed. Light blue trim detailing around the transmission selector, and the dashboard vents, is a distinctive E-Tech Hybrid feature, and is representative of the low emission credentials of the newest addition to the magnificent award-winning Renault Clio model line-up.
Pricing & Warranty
The All-New Renault Clio E-Tech Hybrid is priced at just €29,145 (ex works), or from as little as €162 per month — subject to certain criteria. From now until April 30, Renault Clio E-Tech Hybrid customers will receive a €1,000 Green Bonus, 3.9% APR and 3 Months’ Deferred Payments (terms & conditions apply).
All new Renault passenger cars come with a five-year/200,000km warranty as standard.
Contact Joe Mallon Motors, Naas, on 045 897675.