Hard to believe that the first Clio rolled onto our streets back in 1990. Now as we await 2020, the fifth-generation small hatch is ready to rock, with some 15 million of a sales legacy in its mirrors.
It has just been launched here with prices starting at €16,990, this latest Clio built on the CMF-B platform, boasting improvements in space, safety, technology and weight saving.
This 2020 Clio is built on the new CMF-B modular platform, (Common Module Family), comprising of 85% new parts compared with the platform of previous-generation Clio. It’s worth noting the CMF-B was designed from the outset to accommodate the E-Tech hybrid drivetrain.
Test Drive Launch Car – Iconic 1.0TCe 100
Trim Levels: Expression, Dynamique, Iconic & R.S. Line
Engine: 1.0litre turbo-charged petrol
Transmission: 5-Speed Manual
CO2 rating: 99g/km
Tax Band: A2
Annual Road Tax: €180
Width with folded mirrors/unfolded mirrors: 1798/1988mm
Maximum load length with rear seat folded: 1464mm
Boot volume Petrol/Diesel: 391/366litres
Maximum boot volume with rear seats folded down: 1069litres
Some of the Competition: Ford Fiesta, Toyota Yaris, Citroen C3, Peugeot 208, Hyundai i20, SEAT Ibiza, VW Polo, Mazda2, Nissan Micra, KIA Rio, Suzuki Swift.
Clio Engines & Pricing
Expression Dynamique Iconic R.S.Line
Sce 75 €16,990 €18,690 €19,990 -
TCe 100 - €18,990 €20,290 €22,190
TCe 100 Auto CVT - €20,490 €21,790. €23,690
TCe 130 Auto CVT - - - €25,190
Blue dCi 85 - €21,490 €22,790 €24,690
Resplendent in a wonderful metallic Valencia Orange, my test Clio was hard to ignore, its new headlights, grille and front bumper ensemble and central air scoop combining to please the eyes. This new model gets full LED headlamps across the range, complete with the now familiar Renault C-Shaped daytime running lights. Standing on very tasty 16”alloys, it looks compact and sturdy.
A new steering wheel, smaller in diameter than previous, is the first point of contact on entering the new Clio. New seats also await, more supportive, with a longer seat squab. Although it is some 14mm shorter than the outgoing model, the new Clio is roomier within, with some 26litres of interior cubby space, the boot providing 391 litres.
The drivers instrument cluster is clear and deliver all the visual information you’d ever need, while the centre console is a 7-inch screen on the introductory Expression trim, with the larger 10-inch touchscreen on the higher levels.
On the Road
Beloved of families, the Clio has carved its own car-space in many a driveway. Its welcoming interior was not disturbed during my test drive, the five-speed manual slick through each shift and the 1.o litre turbo-petrol showing enough enthusiasm to satisfy my needs through the urban, rural and open road. Quiet and refined, I look forward to a longer association with the Clio. This is a definite test car for anyone seeking a car in this very competitive segment.
The New Clio is available with a selection of SCe and TCe petrol engines – all of them new to the range – and a new diesel. Power ranges from 75PS to 130PS. New Clio will be available with an E-Tech full-hybrid drive train from 2020.
E-Tech Hybrid Engine
The E-Tech drivetrain was developed and patented by Renault engineering and uses a new-generation 1.6 litre petrol engine that’s mated to a multi-mode gearbox and a pair of electric motors that are powered by a 1.2 kWh lithium ion battery.
When driving, the E-Tech always starts in all-electric mode, and when slowing down the driver benefits from a powerful regenerative braking that allows effective one pedal driving. Combined with the high recharging capacity of the batteries, this makes it possible to drive around town and at low speeds in all-electric mode for around 80 percent of the time. As a result, there is up to a 40 percent improvement in fuel consumption compared with a conventional internal-combustion petrol engine during the urban cycle.
Petrol and Diesel
The entry-level petrol engine is the three-cylinder naturally aspirated 1.0 SCe 75, which comes as standard with a 5-speed manual gearbox, with power and torque outputs of 75PS and 95Nm respectively.
The 1.0 TCe 100 is based on the same three-cylinder layout as the SCe 75, is turbocharged and comes with 100PS and 160Nm of torque, the new-generation engine gains 10PS and 20Nm of torque on the TCe 90 unit it replaces.
Initially the TCe 100 will be available in New Clio with a 5-speed manual gearbox, but later on it will be offered with the option of the latest-generation X-Tronic continuously variable transmission. Tuned specifically for European tastes and driving style, it offers the D-Step function, which delivers seven ‘virtual’ ratios for more responsive acceleration and engine braking.
The most powerful engine making its debut in the new Clio is the four-cylinder, 1.3 TCe GPF engine, delivering 130PS and 240Nm of torque and is available exclusively with the 7-speed EDC dual-clutch transmission. The Blue dCi 85, comes with 85PS and 220Nm of torque and is fitted as standard with a 6-speed gearbox.
Clio R.S. Line debuts
The new Clio marks the debut of the R.S. Line trim level, which will gradually replace the current GT-Line across Renault’s other model ranges.
Outside, the All-New Clio R.S. Line comes with:
Safety on the All-New Clio includes an adaptive driver airbag, high-volume curtain airbags, safety belt pretensioners with load limiters and ISOFIX child seat attachments compliant with the new iSize standard. The car has been awarded a five-star EuroNCAP rating, partly down to the strengthened body structure, side members and front body panel, plus the use of high elastic limit steel and structural adhesive to improve the fit between steel plates.
Safety and Technologies
Features on the 2020 Clio include the option of a 360° camera and active emergency braking with cyclist and pedestrian detection.
Highway & Traffic Jam Companion
This is an option on models with the TCe 130 GPF EDC drivetrain, where this system combines adaptive cruise control (with Stop & Go) and Lane Keep Assist. Active from 0 to 160km/h, the system functions on vehicles equipped with an EDC automatic gearbox, controlling the speed of the vehicle and maintaining safe distances with vehicles ahead while keeping the vehicle centred in its lane. Particularly useful in heavy traffic, the driver assistance system also stops and starts The All-New Clio automatically if the driver does not respond within three seconds.
The Highway & Traffic Jam Companion is a Level 2 autonomy system, albeit drivers need to keep their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road. The system emits an alert if it detects that the driver’s hands are not on the wheel after 13 seconds. After two further alerts, it deactivates automatically after 48 seconds.
All Clio’s come with Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keep Assist, the former automatically primed at speeds more than 70km/h, the latter working between 70km/h and 160km/h. Traffic Sign Recognition with speed alert is also included, as is cruise control with a speed limiter function. Active Emergency Braking is also included and is bolstered by the latest cyclist and pedestrian detection functionality.
Font, rear and side parking assist is standard on R.S. Line models and optional on Iconic versions, as is a rear-view camera. R.S. Line also benefits from automatic high and low beam for its LED headlamp and adaptive cruise control, plus it can be ordered at extra cost with blind spot warning and Easy Park Assist, which automatically scans the side of the road for a parking space then takes control of the wheel for stress-free parking. All the driver needs to do is operate the brakes and throttle.
The Renault Clio is equipped with an enhanced version of Renault Easy Connect, featuring the new Renault Easy Link multimedia system and My Renault app. Grouping a number of connected services, platforms and apps, the system offers remote vehicle management, more precise and more easily configurable sat-nav routes, and easier in-car integration of the connected worlds of the driver and passengers.
Renault Easy Link
The Renault Easy Link multimedia platform is available in most versions of the All-New Clio and is compatible with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Depending on the version Easy Link is offered as either a 7-inch multimedia screen, a 7-inch screen with built-in navigation or a 9.3-inch screen with built-in navigation.
The set up features an all-new interface that is inspired by smartphone design. Users can customise some screens using widgets to directly access their favourite functions. Renault Easy Link is based on four main features:
The My Renault app has been updated to bring drivers more services and keep their vehicle within hand's reach. It can be used to better prepare sat-nav routes and it will continue to guide users after they get out of their car and. Plus it can direct them back to it. It can also be used to remotely lock the vehicle or activate the horn and headlights. Lastly, it provides optimised vehicle maintenance management through the monitoring of the general condition of the car. Depending on the country, it also enables motorists to directly make servicing appointments with dealerships.
The Mulyi-Sense system is easy to use via the new Renault Easy Link multimedia system or a special “piano key” button below the central screen. One touch is all that’s needed to open the Multi-Sense window and change the settings.
Depending on the mode selected, the digital screens on All-New Clio’s dashboard can be customised by the driver, for example to display fuel consumption in Regular mode or power and torque gauges in Sport mode.
Once in, drivers can customise the light ambiance with eight colours (White, Blue, Electric Blue, Yellow, Orange, Red, Green and Purple), each one illustrating the mode of their choice.
A Renault partner for more than 10 years, the Bose system on the 2020 Clio has been fully redesigned with upgraded speakers and components, along with new tuning, to deliver a clearer and crisper listening experience in every seat – without taking up any valuable boot space.
The Bose system includes two additional tweeters in the rear door panels, as well as a compact and totally new externally-ducted subwoofer – the Fresh Air Speaker (FAS), integrated into the left side of the boot and so does not impact on boot space.