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New Renault Clio E-Tech Full Hybrid Goes The Distance.

New Renault Clio E-Tech Hybrid Goes The Distance.

For more than 30 years the Renault Clio has charmed drivers with its urban-friendly dimensions, impressive practicality, charismatic driving character and unique French flair. Now the new Renault Clio E-Tech full hybrid is injecting even more style, while also adding next-generation tech, and a cutting-edge hybrid system for good measure.

Next-Level Hybrid Tech.

The latest generation of France’s best-selling car, which has sold almost 60,000 units in Ireland, has undergone a new reinvention for the modern world. The new E-Tech full hybrid powertrain fuses punchy performance with next-level efficiency to make driving even more engaging and cost effective. It offers 145bhp, a 0-100km/h sprint time of just 9.3-seconds, up to 67.5mpg (4.18l/100km) on a WLTP combined driving cycle, and up to 880 km’s of driving range – all without the need to ever plug it in. Combining efficiency with optimum usability, the advanced hybrid powertrain means it is ideal for both city dwellers and those whose travel is focused more on motorways than urban roads. Renault’s E-Tech full hybrid technology was developed in collaboration with Groupe Renault’s Formula-1 experts, and it included over 200 patents. The technologically-advanced powertrain allows you to drive 100% electric for up to 5 minutes and at up to 130km/h (where permitted). On the open road, or in town, a full hybrid vehicle consumes up to 40% less fuel than a combustion powered vehicle, and it can drive in electric mode for up to 80% of your journeys in town, while also benefitting from a silent start to every journey. A range of up to 60km in electric mode is possible – depending on the state of charge of the battery and driving style.

Highly-Specified Trim Grades.

Streamlined trim grades in the new Clio E-Tech full hybrid consist of Evolution, Techno and Esprit Alpine, with key equipment in entry-level Evolution trim consisting of a 7-inch digital driver display, 7-inch Easy Link touchscreen, 16-inch alloy wheels and rear parking sensors. The mid-range Techno trim adds a reversing camera, 17-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels, front & rear parking sensors, shark fin antenna, wireless phone charger, and MULTI-SENSE with ambient lighting. Range-topping Esprit Alpine is a new level of trim that recently made its debut in the all-new Renault Austral E-Tech full hybrid. Exclusive standard features include ‘Alpine’ embossed 17-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels, F1-inspired Matte Shadow Grey front blade, distinctive enveloping seats with blue overstitching and Alpine detailing, heated front seats and steering wheel, 10-inch digital driver display, 9.3-inch Easy Link touchscreen, adaptive cruise control, blind spot warning and rear cross traffic alert.

New Design Language.

The new Clio E-Tech brings even more alluring style to the iconic Clio nameplate, and it showcases Renault’s new design language. Its completely redesigned front end boasts taut lines for an overtly sporty look and features the brand’s new signature lighting that is inspired by the Nouvel’R logo and incorporates slender full-LED headlamps. The sculpted rear of the car, along with sharp LED tail-lights, create a truly show-stopping design. The new Clio’s interior is packed with high-quality eco-conscious materials that give a premium feel to every surface, while the sporty Esprit Alpine design cues continue in the form of eye-catching blue, white and red stitching, performance car-like aluminium pedals and supportive racing seats. Created from Renault’s partnership with Tencel™, the coatings of the upholstery, doors and dashboard contain 60% plant fibres, with the wood used guaranteed to come exclusively from sustainably managed European forests.

Big-Car Practicality.

A clever modular design means the new Clio E-Tech offers big car practicality in a small package. In the back, even tall passengers will find favour with 16.5cm of legroom, along with plenty of headroom. The boot offers 301 litres of luggage space as standard, with up to 1,006 litres available with the rear seats folded down. As part of Renault’s Human First program to improve road safety for all, the Clio E-Tech comes with up to 17 advanced driver assistance systems for peace-of-mind motoring.

Test Car Details.

My test car was a new Clio E-Tech full hybrid in range-topping Esprit Alpine trim, and it looked particularly striking in its Iron Blue metallic paintwork. The E-Tech powertrain comprises a 1.6-litre four-cylinder atmospheric petrol engine, a 24bhp integrated starter-generator (ISG), a 48bhp electric motor, a small 1.2kWh drive battery and an automatic transmission that sends power to the cars’ front wheels. The dashboard is dominated by a 9.3-inch touchscreen that operates the infotainment system, and Renault have opted for Google-powered navigation so that the maps will be constantly updated. Under the touchscreen is where you will find physical buttons for the likes of seat heating, My Sense driving modes and an EV mode, with rotary-style controls for the heating & ventilation located just below them for ease of use on the go. The electric motor gives the driver access to instant torque, ensuring a quick getaway from a standstill, and the automatic gearbox chooses when to change gear according to your driving style. The car steers in a confident and precise fashion, and its cornering ability is impressive too. It feels well planted on the road and its well-judged suspension set-up provides passengers with a compliant and cossetting ride quality. While the previous generation Clio was one of the best small cars on the market, I feel it is fair to say that the new Clio has raised the bar even further in terms of its drivability, efficiency and overall desirability.

Verdict & Price

With compelling style, advanced connectivity and an all-new hybrid system offering up to 880kms of range on one tank, Renault’s beloved Clio is better than ever. The new Clio model range starts at just €24,845 for the TCe 90 petrol engine version, with the E-Tech full hybrid priced from €30,545. My range-topping test car specification is priced from €34,045 and represents outstanding value for money. All new Renault cars and vans come with warranty protection, providing worry-free motoring for 5 years or 150,000km as standard – one of the best warranty covers on the Irish market. Additionally, every new Renault comes with a 5 year Renault Assistance package as standard.

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