• There seemed little point in writing anything about the Clio Renaulsport 200 Turbo EDC until the prices were available, but now we know that it’s positioned more than respectably when compared with the Clio RS’ main competitor from MINI.

    Two versions of the Clio RS 200 Turbo will be availble, standard – priced from £18,995 or Lux, which starts at £19,995. Standard equipment includes 17-inch alloy wheels, air conditioning, integrated MediaNav seven-inch touchscreen including Bluetooth, USB connectivity, keyless start and entry, Renaultsport front seats and cruise control. The standard tyre is a Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2.

    That’s £345 less than the 181bhp MINI Cooper S with auto transmission or £4,605 less than the equivalent 208bhp John Cooper Works version. Other comparisons worth making are £100 more than the three-door, manual Peugeot 208 GTi and £1,055 less than the lower-powered, DSG-equipped five-door Volkswagen Polo GTI.

    With 197bhp and 177lb ft of torque the Clio 200′s on-paper performance is on a par with the JCW MINI Cooper S, with 0 to 62mph covered in 6.7 seconds – around 0.2 seconds quicker than its predecessor.

    Judged purely on the toys it offers, Renault’s Clio 200 will be hard to beat. With its standard EDC (Efficient Dual Clutch) transmission, controllable via steering wheel mounted shift paddles, the driver can also take advantage of the system’s multi-change down function.

    The R.S. Drive function offers ‘three’ driving modes (normal, sport and race) which alter the settings for engine, accelerator pedal, steering and dynamic stability control (ESC) mapping. While ‘race’ mode locks the transmission in manual and drops the shift times to less than 150 milliseconds.

    Other trick features include; launch control with fully disconnectable ESC and ASR traction control (in Race mode), rally car derived hydraulic compression stops in the shock absorbers and the R.S. Diff for enhancing traction and reducing understeer.

    An R.S. Sound Pipe sends engine soundwaves directly into cabin for the full hot hatch driving experience.

    As before an optional Cup chassis is available, which lowers ride height by 3mm, offers a 15% stiffer chassis and quicker steering rack, red brake callipers, gloss black 18” Renaultsport wheels shod with Dunlop Sport Maxx TT tyres. This costs a nominal £450.

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