RENAULT Clio 5 Doors
Generations Timeline, Specs and Pictures
After 15 million units sold, the Clio was one of the most successful cars in Renault’s history.
The fifth-generation had a difficult job to do: to keep that name on top of the sales charts.
Built on the legacy left by the Renault 5, the Clio was a car addressed especially for urban mobility, but it didn’t have any problems in running long distances. It stood up proud in the small hot-hatch segment with the Clio Renault Sport that challenged the MINI Cooper S territory. The Clio was the best selling French car of all times and it was received the European “Car of the year” award twice!
The fifth generation of the Clio was introduced at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show. It was shorter than its predecessor, lower and wider. It made it look sportier with the Megane-inspired front fascia. The Clio was offered with LED headlights, which was not that common in the small-segment.
The new, CMF-B (Common Module Family -B) used for it helped the car in interior space and safety features. Inside, the Clio was highly upgraded when compared with the fourth generation. On the center stack, a standard 4.7” infotainment display was installed, and a 7” was offered for intermediate trim levels. There was a 9.5” screen on the options list. Fortunately, the designers left the rotary knobs for volume and climate control underneath.
The Clio was offered with a choice of three engines of 1.0-liter with three power levels and a 1.5-liter turbodiesel offered in two power choices. A hybrid version was the big novelty for the range.
For those who were looking for a balanced car between cost, performance, utility, and comfort features, Renault introduced the Clio GT in 2013.
The fourth generation of the Clio was launched in 2012 at the Paris Motor Show. Unlike its predecessors, it was available as a 5-door only version, either as a hatchback or a station-wagon. On the hatchback version, the Clio GT was the mix of everything. It offered decent power, a lot of features and decent space for five passengers on short distances, or five passengers for long trips.
The GT Line featured different front apron with LED daytime running lights in the lower side. A big grille in the center and smaller side fake-intakes made the car look more aggressive. In the back, the twin-round exhaust was placed next to a diffuser. A roof-spoiler with the third brake-light finished the sporty look of the exterior.
Inside, the Clio GT featured bucket-seats in the front and a bench in the rear. On the center stack, there was a standard infotainment unit, which supported Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, but an option for a better system named R-Link was available and it could show live traffic.
For the engine, the GT-Line was offered with a 1.2-liter turbocharged gasoline unit. It was mated as standard to a six-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox. It was good to offer an under 10 seconds sprint from 0 to 60 mph (0-97 kph).
After four years on the market, the Clio received a facelift in 2016 and was named as the most stylish Clio ever produced to that date.
Renault was satisfied with its small-segment contender’s sales results and tried to keep that momentum and upgraded the vehicle with new features and technologies. The Clio was, once again, a big player in the European market.
In 2016 many carmakers already install LED headlights instead of Xenon ones. Renault followed the trend and introduced the same system for Clio’s upper trim levels, with the entire range receiving the C-shaped signature daytime running lights. Moreover, the whole range received a new chrome trim at the bottom of the front grille. Renault changed the bumpers with new ones that featured lower aprons designed to make the vehicle looks modern, even though it wasn’t that old. At least, it looked sportier.
Inside, Renault changed the dashboard and the instrument cluster. It was an unconventional approach, with a digital speedometer placed inside an ellipsoidal cluster in front of the driver. On top of the center stack, the carmaker put the infotainment’s touchscreen. True to its roots, the carmaker made the Clio user-friendly and installed bucket seats at the front and a split-folding bench in the rear.
Under the hood, Renault installed a wide choice of engines ranged between 75 hp and 120 hp, both gasoline and turbo-diesel units.
Renault introduced the fourth generation of Clio at the 2012 Paris Motor Show in two shapes: hatchback with 5-doors or station-wagon.
The Clio was one of Renault’s most significant successes of all times, and while some would remember the glorious R5, other will heard only about the Clio. It was designed as an affordable vehicle, with plenty of engines and options versions that could make everyone’s vanilla.
Its designers worked around the clock to develop a vehicle that dramatically improved over its predecessor. Like most of the other Renaults from the last decade, the team also had to take care and get that five-stars at the European crash-tests results. Its big, swept-back headlights were linked by the horizontal chromed grille’s bar and the LEDs. The giant, chromed grille took center stage cutting through the bumper and the hood. The car profile mimicked a coupe; hence it didn’t feature visible door-handles for the rear doors.
Inside, the Clio featured bucket-seats in the front and a bench in the rear. There was a standard infotainment unit on the center stack, which supported Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, but an option for a better system named R-Link was available and could show live traffic. Depending on the configuration, the Clio sported fabric or man-made leather and heated seats at the front.
Under the hood, Renault offered the Clio with a wide choice of engines ranged from a 0.9-liter engine up to a 1.6-liter unit. The diesel versions shared the same 1.5-liter unit in two power outputs.
Renault introduced the third generation of the Clio range in 2005 at the Frankfurt Motor Show and upgraded it at the beginning of 2009.
The introduction of the new Euro 5 regulations went beyond emissions and asked the carmakers to make their vehicles safer. Some carmakers had to work hard to meet the demands, while others waited until the last minute to make the mandatory modifications. Renault was part of the second group. It didn’t have any problems with the safety systems since the Clio was already a 5-star winner on the EuroNCAP crash test, but it lacked some active safety systems such as the daytime running lights.
For the facelifted version, Renault chose to reshape the entire front fascia. Its bumper featured a more expansive, trapezoidal grille, while above the license plate, only a small gap provided air for the engine. Its swept-back headlights featured dark accents inside the headlamps. Compared with its non-facelifted version, the 2009 Clio was slightly longer but featured the same wheelbase as before. In the five-door version, the B-pillar was black to create a false impression of a three-door bodywork.
Inside, the carmaker installed new, softer materials around the cabin. The equipment options list was even longer than before and added the removable Carminat Tom-Tom navigation device integrated with the car’s audio system. The rear bench was re-positioned and allowed better headroom even for taller than average adults in the back. Strangely, the five-door version offered slightly less shoulder-room than its three-door sibling.
Under the hood, Renault installed seven engines to chose from, but only one of them was available with an automatic transmission.
The Clio’s third-generation hit the market and grabbed the European Car of the year 2006 award in front of Volkswagen’s Passat and the stunning-looking Alfa Romeo 159.
The Clio followed the French tradition for supermini hatchbacks. After all, Renault invented that body shape with the 1965 Renault 16, and it was good to do it. It managed to provide an affordable car with fuel-efficient engines and, even if it wasn’t everybody’s cup of tea, it still offered what was needed for a family. On top of that, it proved to be a very efficient fleet vehicle.
Thanks to its new front fascia that featured large, swept-back headlights and a split grille, the 2006 Clio distinguished itself from most competitors who used a single wide grille instead. Its triangular headlights with clear turn signals at the top offered a strong image for the small vehicle. From its sides, the five-door Clio featured a black B-pillar. Its carmaker tried to make it look like a three-door version. While it didn’t succeed, it still didn’t spoil the overall look. The rounded tailgate flanked by taillights offered a wide and tall opening with a low loading edge at the back.
Inside, the carmaker added Bluetooth connectivity for the entire range, which gained the French carmaker an edge. In addition, its center stack featured the climate control unit with AC for almost all the range and the audio system. Apart from the base trim level, the Clio featured softer materials on the inside and room for four people on long distances or five for shorter trips.
Under the hood, the French carmaker installed a wide engine choice starting with a 1.5-liter turbo-diesel which provided just 70 hp and went up to a 2.0-liter 140 hp unit. The latter was paired either with a four-speed automatic transmission or a six-speed manual.
Renault introduced a facelifted version for the Clio’s second generation in June 2001 and enhanced the vehicles in its main three areas: exterior, interior, and powerplants.
The small French hatchback received significant updates. Its customers started to ask for more, and Renault was eager to provide them with what they need. It was one of the best-selling small-sized vehicles on the European market, and the French carmaker wanted to keep it that way.
One of the most significant changes was at the front, where a new set of triangular, curved headlights replaced the previously used horizontal, rounded headlamps. As a result, both the bumper and the grille were changed accordingly, showing the same signature “Bird beak” design. Unlike the non-facelifted version, the 2001 five-door version featured body-colored door mirrors for intermediate and upper trim levels and black rubber strips on the front and rear doors. The taillights kept their shape at the back but received a new design, with clear lenses for the reversing lights.
Inside, the carmaker improved the quality of the materials and ditched the cheap-looking plastic from the dashboard. Renault also introduced a CD player on the options list and a new climate-control panel. Inside the instrument panel, the tachometer became a standard feature, and the main dials received silver surroundings around them.
Under the hood, the French carmaker improved the engine lineup. For the base version, it ditched the older, 1.2-liter eight-valve unit and kept only the 16-valves version. Renault also introduced a new 1.5-liter turbo-diesel engine range, retiring the older 1.9-liter units.
When Renault started to change its car names, the famous Renault 5 was replaced by the Renault Clio.
A car that reshaped the small-size European car market. The first generation was launched in 1990 and it was one of the most successful Renault models ever made.
Renault 5 was sold in almost six million units in its 18 years on the market. It was introduced in 1990 as a three and five-door version. But it started with a flat tire since it was available only for left-hand drive. The right-hand-drive version for countries like the UK, Malta, Cyprus, India, or Japan (where it was named Lutetia)
sales started in 1991.
On the outside, the square headlights resembled those found on the 5. A short hood and tall greenhouse made the car look roomy. Its higher rear side was caused by the stiffer suspension in the back, but the car stood leveled when the rear seats were occupied. Depending on the trim level, a rear window wiper was installed.
The 5-door version was a good buy for city use, but not bad for the short and medium distances. There was enough legroom for two adults in the back, but not a big trunk behind them. The folding rear bench improved the load area, but it wasn’t available with a split seatback. Inside, there was no exposed metal, unlike in the 5 where some interior panels were left unpadded. The seats were flat for the base models, but depending on the trim level those could have been upgraded to bucket-type.
Various engines were offered for the Clio, starting with a very fuel-efficient unit of 1.2-liter and up to a 1.8-liter 95 hp unit. The Clio was offered with a naturally aspirated diesel as well.