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Renault Introduces Clio RS16

Last month, Renault gave a sneak peek of its new Clio RS16 concept car, and we were mightily impressed by the performance engine it came with. We expected Renault to soon introduce the production version, and this week was apparently the right time for us to see the latest in Renault’s series of Clio RS hatchbacks.

The RS in the RS16 stands for Renault Sport, the French automaker’s official performance arm. It includes both the road car division Renault Sports Cars and the motorsport division Renault Sport Racing, which makes up Renault’s Formula One team.

The Clio RS16 is born out of a collaboration between these two divisions. Based on the fourth generation of the compact Clio, the new RS16 is available in two options—a standard model with 200 horsepower and the sportier Clio RS Trophy with 220 horsepower.

Both of these versions come packed with a turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine with front wheel drive and six-speed dual-clutch transmission.

But what’s unique to this particular segment is the choice of three chassis setups—Sport, Cup and Trophy settings. The Trophy setup is the most powerful one with the ride height getting lowered by 20 millimeters at the front and 10 millimeters at the rear. It gets finished with 18-inch wheels, which would come as standard.

According to Renault, the new Clio RS16 can go 0-62mph in 6.6 seconds. Top speed is believed to be 146 mph, though the automaker also claims that there is a 14.5-second elapsed time for the quarter mile.

All of these Clio RS16 models will get a body kit with front splitter, side sills, roof-mounted spoiler and rear diffuser. The models also have the R.S. Vision, a checkered flag pattern for the LED fog lights.

Once you go inside, you’ll find the shift paddles for transmission, launch control function, RS infotainment system, and drive modes selector—Normal, Sport and Race settings.

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