Renault Clio review

Category: Small car

Section: Costs & verdict

Available fuel types:petrol, hybrid
Available colours:
Renault Clio 2021 interior infotainment
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RRP £16,200What Car? Target Price from£14,017
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Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Costs, insurance groups, MPG and CO2

The Renault Clio range starts at a lower price than the VW Polo if you opt for the smallest non-turbocharged engine and the most basic trim, but we’d recommend spending a bit more to upgrade to Iconic trim with the turbocharged TCe 90 petrol engine.

With a claimed economy figure of 64.2mpg, the E-Tech hybrid is the most frugal Clio on paper, although its True MPG test result of 51.6mpg is a little disappointing (for reference, the Toyota Yaris returned nearly 60mpg). It should, however, be a cheap car to run for company car buyers thanks to its CO2 emissions (from as little as 98g/km).

The Clio holds on to very nearly as much of its value as the Polo after three years, and suffers less depreciation than the Ford Fiesta. While the Clio has similar insurance costs to the Ford Fiesta on a like-for-like basis, a Polo is cheaper still.

Find out what your car really does to the gallon with our True MPG Calculator

Equipment, options and extras

The Clio's entry-level Play trim level has more than just the basics, but we would recommend stepping up to our favourite, Iconic. That adds alloy wheels, keyless entry, a leather steering wheel, rear parking sensors, front and rear electric windows and built-in sat-nav.

S Edition benefits from larger 17in alloy wheels, climate control, front parking sensors, a rear view camera and automatic wipers, but it also costs several thousand pounds more.

Top-spec RS Line is even pricier, but provides a lot of styling tweaks, including a specially styled front bumper, plus unique interior stitching and upholstery. It gets LED fog lamps, the larger 9.3in infotainment screen and tinted side windows.

Renault Clio 2021 interior infotainment

Reliability

Although we have no data on this latest Clio, Renault as a whole came a shocking 30th out of 31 manufacturers in the What Car? Reliability Survey.

Every new Renault carries a five-year warranty, though, and there’s no mileage limit for the first two years (a 100,000 limit applies after that). Renault also provides three years (or 60,000 miles) of roadside assistance cover.

That beats the three-year warranties of most rivals and equals Toyota’s five-year/100,000 mile warranty, but isn’t quite as generous as Hyundai’s five-year/unlimited mileage policy or Kia’s seven-year/100,000 mile package.

Safety and security

Euro NCAP awarded the Clio the maximum five stars for safety. There are a couple of points of note: it performed better than the Audi A1 at protecting adults from chest injuries in the event of a frontal impact and also did a better job than the Polo at reducing the likelihood of whiplash for a child sitting in the back.

As well as being well-rated for protecting its occupants in a crash, the Clio also helps to prevent you having one in the first place – Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB), traffic sign recognition, adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance are all standard.

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Overview

It might not be the most fun or comfortable small car, but the Clio continues to be a great all-rounder. The frugal E-Tech hybrid version will appeal to company car users, but the TCe 100 petrol is our pick. Stick with the mid-range Iconic trim and you’ll have yourself a very well-priced and practical family car, although interior quality and the infotainment system can’t compete with its german Volkswagen Polo rival.

  • Class-leading safety equipment
  • Practical boot
  • Smooth hybrid system
  • Laggy infotainment screen
  • Clunky manual gearbox
  • High boot loading lip

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