Herald Sun - Motoring - - Head To Head -


The stand-alone price is solid but the Clio can’t com­pete with the Swift’s drive­away deal right now. Putting the Re­nault on the road will cost about $21,600. Ser­vic­ing costs are $299 ev­ery 12 months/15,000km for the first three years and the Clio has a five-year war­ranty.


Vivid colours, a min­i­mal­ist in­te­rior and a funky out­side look give a good in­di­ca­tion the Clio is aimed at younger buy­ers. The feel­ing is light and bright and the 300-litre boot is well-up on the Swift’s 210L ca­pac­ity. Satel­lite nav­i­ga­tion is dis­played on a crisp seven-inch screen and the Blue­tooth in­cludes au­dio stream­ing. There isn’t a huge amount of legroom down the back but all seats are rea­son­ably sup­port­ive.


Main­tain­ing mo­men­tum is the best way to progress with the 900cc three-cylin­der en­gine. Take­offs aren’t its forte but once un­der­way the 66kW/135Nm mill gets the job done, if not at se­ri­ous speed.


The Clio is rated as a five-star car by ANCAP but does with­out cur­tain airbags for the back seat pas­sen­gers. Some won’t care; for oth­ers it will be a deal-breaker. Seat belt re­minders are fit­ted to all seats.


Get it off the line and the Clio makes de­cent progress. Hills don’t help its per­for­mance but as an ur­ban com­muter it gets the job done with­out a lot of fuss and with a claimed fuel use of just 4.5L/100km. The softer ride helps over con­stant bumps but ul­ti­mately means the Clio isn’t as en­ter­tain­ing on the back roads.

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