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Euromarque has a batch of brand-new manual Renault Clio Authentique turbos, in a selection of colours, each car priced at $18,600*. This has to be the continental car bargain of the year as these cars come with a full three-year 100,000 km warranty and more fun than you ever thought possible at this price.
Powered by Renault's all-new 0.9-litre triple-cylinder turbo, which is designed for economy, but with forced induction still provides punch and performance when it's required. The 66kW triple manages to out-power many 1.6s, and gets to 100kmh in 12 seconds, while providing a hybrid-challenging EU combined-cycle fuel economy rating of 4.5-litres per 100km (or about 60 mpg in old money).
Over the years, the wee Clio city hatch we remember has grown into a full-sized family car, with five seats and four wide-opening doors and a pinch-waist design that cuts it well apart from other cars in the sub-$19,000 bracket, none of which come near the Renault's favourite hatch in terms of style.
In fact, with a sportingly low roofline, and sculpted flanks and tail, combined with a slim side glass profile, the 2015 Clio is one of the prettier cars out there in any segment. Renault has been at work on the Clio's insides too, with a cheery family-sized cabin, with shapes and textures that make it a genuinely interesting and functional place in which to sit and travel.
With standard air conditioning, power mirrors, rake and reach adjustable steering, trip computer, Bluetooth, and an AM/FM MP3 and USB compatible stereo, the Clio makes a nonsense of the kind of basic, stripped-down offerings that usually feature in this price bracket. And that's without counting the 5-star crash safety rating, thanks to front and side airbags, stability control, hill start assist, ABS and ASR.
Light, nimble, easy to drive the Clio has that built-in 'je ne sais quoi' that comes with all cars bearing the Renault badge, with a quiet, well-damped chassis and crisp, variable electric assisted steering and a mid-corner balance and feel that proves you don't need to spend-up large to enjoy your day-to-day driving.
We suggest you test-drive one now, as this batch is going very quickly indeed.
*All the Renault Clio vehicles at $18,600 price point have been sold now.