The Renault Clio has been one of the UK’s favourite superminis for years now and Renault will be hoping that the Sport Tourer is also taken to our hearts. The supermini estate market is growing increasingly competitive so the Clio will need to be on top form to grab a slice.
Lets start with the good news. The 1.2 litre turbocharged engine is a peach. It produces a very healthy 100 bhp, and an impressive 145 lbs ft of torque at 3,000 rpm, much of which is available anywhere between 2,000 and just over 4,000rpm. This makes it a good partner for the mini estate.
When it comes to actually being an estate the Clio does less well giving away space to key rivals.
Despite being almost exactly the same length as the Fabia estate, the Clio’s boot is 41 litres smaller (439 litres) and 183 litres smaller with the seats down (1277 litres). It also gives away over 100 Kg of payload capacity.
However, the engine comes to the rescue once more in the performance stakes. The turbocharger provides sprightly performance which means that it will be able to cope with most tasks. The interior is attractive and airy whilst the exterior styling is well judged. On the move refinement is impressive and the chassis is capable, but the steering lacks feel which inhibits confidence.
The Renault Clio Sport Tourer isn’t particularly cheap but it is a class act. If you want more space than the hatch but the same high levels of refinement and style, the Sport Tourer is well worth a look. If outright space is a key factor it may disappoint, but all in all this is a thoroughly competent small estate with a great engine.