Renault Clio Tce 130 in the test

Achim Hartmann
Renault Clio Tce 130 put to the test
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E a country road can't choose where to go she should still lead. There may be routes that create more sophisticated connections than the L 1095 between the village of Bürg and the roundabout in front of the A 81. Its endpoints have never been significant enough to be replaced by a new road. So it still winds through fields, then through the forest. And yet a country road like the 1095 has more in common: You and your youth.

It was more than half a lifetime ago that you were a novice driver with the R5. Since the little Renaults have accompanied many of us in this most rapid phase of life since the times of the first R5 in 1972, a new Clio is always an event. The new one doesn't look so new. Shouldn't he either, customers bought the old model mainly because of the design. After Renault used to like to instigate design revolutions to challenge customers' sense of style, the following applies now: Don't change what you like.

Get new, stay beautiful

Achim Hartmann
A lot has happened under the skin of the new Clio: Platform, The drive and infotainment have been fundamentally revised.

If Renault slipped the stylish body of the Clio IV over the undergarment of its predecessor, only the design now maintains continuity. The Clio is the first model in the alliance between Renault, Nissan and Mitsubishi, which is not always in the greatest harmony, using the small car version of the alliance platform CMF - which stands for Common Module Family. It consists of five protagonists: engine compartment, cockpit, electrics /electronics, lower front and rear end. In addition, the platform is fit for technical components that will later be used for alternative drives(The Clio Hybrid will start in 2020) or will be added much later for automated driving.

Now other advantages of the new base are more important. The Clio creates more space on it with little change in dimensions. 340 l of luggage can be balanced over the high edge in the load compartment, 1,096 l with the rear seat backrest folded down. Otherwise, the only adjustment tricks are the height-adjustable loading floor - a little unimaginative for a company whose models once had the entire furniture rearranged into a double bed or, in the case of result-generating romances, the back seat was converted into a cot.

Now the No longer hopped around sofa back there, but sat properly. It's a bit gloomy in the rear due to the small windows and broad C-pillars. The Clio accommodates pilots and co. To do this, they have rearranged the operation at Renault. Great: the quick configuration for all assistance systems. Apart from that, it takes quite a bit of typing and tweaking until everything has been configured, saved or route planned in infotainment. But with the touchscreen, the cockpit can be arranged in this reduced, beautiful living style. Whereby the Clio concentrates the high level of material and processing quality there, it does not hold up elsewhere, as is shown by the price-optimized quality of sealing rubbers, load compartment cladding or engine insulation panels.

Engine with asterisk

Achim Hartmann
The forced-ventilation 1.3-liter four-cylinder installed here produces 130 hp and comes with one in the test acceptable consumption of 6.5 liters per 100 km.

Now the 1.3-liter turbo gasoline engine starts. It is the particle-filtered four-cylinder that also appears in the Mercedes A-Class. With the Clio, which is still available in three output levels of a one-liter, three-cylinder petrol engine (65, 73 and with turbo 100 hp), it is the top engine - connected as standard with a seven-speed dual clutch transmission. It can sometimes be taken by surprise by the vehemence with which the engine starts up, then switches up late. Otherwise, however, the box switches smoothly and accurately. The driver can also move through the aisles using rocker switchespinball, which usually strengthens the feeling of being productively involved than actually making progress. And things are moving forward - despite the hot temperatures on the test day, the TCe 130 almost reached the factory specification for acceleration. Above all, the four-cylinder engine powers the Clio fully and economically with 6.5 l Super /100 km in the test.

Even on pleasant country tours it hardly needs any more. And the Clio is capable of cornering, with the precise, but not too feedback-intensive steering and the balanced chassis even in the servo-reduced sport mode. MacPhersons at the front, twist beam axle at the rear - nothing complex, but well coordinated. So the Clio turns lively but not cocky in curves, remains neutral until it gives in to gentle understeer. The ESP rarely has to intervene, it then regulates briefly and effectively. The suspension comfort is also good - the taut Clio only takes short bumps by surprise.

Otherwise? Little things like the coarse backrest angle adjustment, the very creative traffic sign recognition or the volume setting for the turn signal noise - an idea whose full innovative strength may still have to be fully developed. Well, let's blink softly when turning off the roundabout onto 1095. And look with the grown-up Clio to see if a little youth has fallen by the wayside.


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