Renault Clio V6

theninj November 19, 2011 0
Renault Clio V6

Renault Clio V6

What you need to know

Depending on who you speak to, what reviews you’ve read or what you’re mate Dave’s brother-in-laws uncle told him down the pub one night you’ve more than likey formed an opinion on Renaults slightly un-hinged Clio V6. It probably involves mential images of you approaching a wet roundabout, applying 2 degrees of steering then waking up backwards and on fire with the backend of your Clio embedded in a branch of McDonalds.

To most people the idea of shoe-horning a dirty great engine into the middle of a tiny hatchback might seem odd, but not Renault, they’ve got previous form. In the early eighties they went rallying with a highly re-engineered, mid engined version of the Renault 5. This first mid engined Turbocharged car was built purely for competition purposes. After the first 400 homologation cars were built a second generation was produced using less expensive, productionized parts. This second generation was called the Renault 5 Turbo 2. The previous car was known from then on as the Turbo 1. These cars were produced at the Alpine factory in Dieppe.

Fast forward to 2001 and the launch of the Clio V6. Based on the MkII Clio, the V6 was built by TWR in Sweden and featured a version of the Lagunas 3.0 Litre V6 upgraded to 230bhp. The chassis which shares very few parts with the standard had to be extensively re-worked, the rear seating area was now where the engine was, making the car a strict 2 seater. The Phase 1 Clio V6 was actually 300hg heavier than the fastest front engined Clio and was barely quicker to 60 than it’s more practical counterpart. Road testers all seemed to agree the car was a little err, “lively” in the wet. With a short wheelbase, stiff suspension and 60 percent of the weight at the rear of the car, a good deal of common sense was required.

On the later 2003-2005 “phase 2″ cars the tendancy to oversteer was dramatically reduced making it a much more driver freindly prospect. Amongst the changes that included more power (255bhp up from the phase 1′s 230bhp), the major differences were in the chassis and suspension tweaks. A 23 mm longer wheelbase, wider front track (33mm) stiffer front suspension and a re-worked rear subframe means the phase 2 car understeers more at the limit, reminding you you’re taking liberties rather than biting your head off.

Phase 1 (2001-2003)  cars can be bought for less than £8k making it a bit of a bargain. If you’re after a Phase 2 car you’ll be looking at around the £13-15k mark for a good used example.


General Information

Wikipedia entry
Parkers guide Knowledge Base
Evo Clio V6 Buying guide
Renault Sport info


Evo Renaultsport Clio V6 review (May 2003)
Autocar Clio V6 Review (2001)
Auto Express Clio V6 Review (2003)
Auto Express Clio V6 Review (2005)
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Top Gear Clio V6 Video

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