The Clio Va Va Voom, Renault is targeted towards young and first-time car buyers in particular.
Distinguished by a 'Va Va Voom' badge on the rear tailgate, this limited edition model is priced at R99 995.
At the same time standard equipment levels are high, including air conditioning, front electric windows, "intelligent" electric power-assisted steering with height adjustment for the steering wheel, tinted glass all round, internally adjustable door mirrors and comprehensive instrumentation including a rev counter, clock and digital oil level indicator with time delay.
Remote central locking is also standard, incorporating the Renault Anti-Intruder Device (RAID) that automatically locks the doors when in motion, as well as the Stay Shut system which re-locks the car automatically if unlocked accidentally.
A unique addition to the Clio Va Va Voom is a specially sourced VDO radio incorporating a CD/MP3 player, which enables the playing of conventional compact discs as well as CDs recorded with MP3 digital audio files.
The safety package includes adaptive dual front airbags for the driver and passenger. The front passenger airbag has a manual deactivation system that allows for the fitment of a child seat, attached to the Isofix mounting points.
The international standard Isofix points are also fitted on the two outer rear seats. This provides the safest mounting of a child seat, as the attachment points are anchored directly onto the car body.
In addition, side impact protection bars are fitted in the front and rear doors, and there are three-point independent seatbelts with pretensioners for all occupants. The front seatbelts also boast height adjustment and load limiters.
Other safety features include a third high-level brake light, a blind spot mirror on the driver's side, rear seats with an anti-submarining design, an anti-burst bonnet catch, a luggage protection bar that prevents luggage from penetrating the cabin, a fuel cut-off in the event of an accident and new generation height adjustable 'safety' head restraints.
Vehicle security is taken care of by a transponder controlled engine immobiliser, security window etching and visible VIN plate, anti-drill door locks and a locking fuel cap.
On the practical side there's a useful dash-top storage compartment, oddments space at the base of the centre console with two integrated cup holders, front door binnacles and a large glovebox with holders for a credit card, pen and sunglasses.
The five-door hatch configuration offers versatile loading, with the standard 255 dm3 of luggage space expanding to 596 dm3 with the one-piece rear seat back folded, and accommodating up to 1 037 dm3 when loaded up to roof height.
The Clio Va Va Voom shares its mechanical specification with the 1.2 16v Authentique model.
This means it gets multi-point electronic fuel injection and the 1 149 cc four-cylinder engine delivers 55 kW of power at 5 500 r/min and a respectable 105 Nm of torque at 3 500 r/min.
Matched to a five-speed manual gearbox, it accelerates from 0-100 km/h in 13 seconds, and reaches a top speed of 170 km/h.
Fuel consumption is a particular highlight, as Renault says the Clio 1.2 16v is capable of achieving a remarkably low 4.9 l/100 km in extra-urban or open road driving conditions.
The urban or city driving consumption is pegged at 7.8 l/100 km, while the combined cycle consumption amounts to just 5.9 l/100 km.
With a 50- litre fuel tank capacity, this gives the Clio an effective range of over 800 km in a mix of driving conditions.
The Clio is fitted with 175/65 R14 tyres mounted on 5.5Jx14-inch steel wheels finished with attractive wheel trims. Braking is taken care of by a servo-assisted system with ventilated discs in front and drums at the rear.
An independent suspension configuration does duty up front, featuring MacPherson struts with coil springs, lower wishbones and an anti-roll bar. At the rear, the semi-independent setup comprises trailing arms linked to a torsion beam.
Its compact overall dimensions, with a total length of just 3 773 mm, mask its high level of interior comfort and space.
Linked to the variable electrically controlled power steering system, with just 3.4 turns from lock to lock and a turning circle of just 10.3 m, it makes for superb manoeuvrability in tight city conditions and shopping mall parking bays.
Colour-coded bumpers incorporate a protective strip, as well as side mouldings on the doors in order to avoid the usual parking lot nicks and scratches.
In addition, the Clio has flexible impact-absorbing Noryl front fenders that eliminate expensive body damage from minor bumps.
The Clio comes standard with a three-year/100 000 km warranty, a six-year anti-corrosion warranty and 15 000 km service intervals.