Renault is trying to broaden its horizons (read: target more wallets) with the Clio GT-Line, a new model that sits between the standard Clio models and the range-topping Renaultsport 200 Turbo.
The latest version of the popular hatchback comes with the all-new turbocharged 120bhp 1.2-litre TCe 120 engine. 0 to 62mph takes 9.9 seconds — a far cry from the 6.7 seconds it takes on the Renaultsport 200 Turbo — and a top speed of 121mph is promised. Torque is a not-entirely-shabby 190Nm at peak.
While not as endowed in the performance department, the GT-Line is rather fuel efficient and will cost less to tax thanks to a combined 54.3mpg and 120g/km of CO2 emissions.
The GT-Line borrows a number of styling cues from its more expensive brethren including 17-inch GT alloys, Renaultsport seats, twin chrome exhausts pipes, aggressive-looking front and rear-bumpers, GT leather steering wheel, gearshift paddles, side sills, lots of anthracite detailing in the cockpit and a rear-diffuser.
Also included is the R.S. Drive system that provides Normal and Sport driving modes (instead of the three you get with the Renaultsport 200). Sport loosens ESC settings, firms steering feel, quickens throttle response and causes the 6-speed EDC (efficient dual clutch) gearbox to shift 30 milliseconds faster (down from 200 milliseconds).
Other Clio GT-Line extras include a 4x35w speaker Arkamys sound system to keep the tunes pumping, 40 per cent stiffer dampers to improve cornering, Hill-Start Assist and the R-Link infotainment system. This provides a 7-inch touchscreen display with navigation, Bluetooth and USB connectivity.
Spend a little more and Renault will grant you the option of a panoramic sunroof, heated front seats, leather upholstery and a reversing camera to keep that attractive back-end in good shape.
Five paint jobs – including the Malta Blue pictured above – will be available when the GT-Line goes on sale in July, with deliveries arriving in September. Prices start at £17,395.