Renault has confirmed it will introduce a more affordable petrol version of its new Clio as it looks to ‘help customers in a difficult economic climate’.
The French firm’s Clio remains one of its most popular models – particularly with private buyers – with Renault UK planning to offer its latest model purely as a hybrid, with the cheaper petrol models being discontinued.
However, Renault has U-turned and will now offer the Clio again with a more affordable petrol engine.
Using an 89bhp 1.0-litre petrol engine and a manual gearbox, it allows the Clio to accelerate from 0-60mph in 12 seconds while returning around 50mpg.
Renault says it remains ‘committed to becoming fully electrified in the UK’, however, and will still offer its 143bhp 1.6-litre petrol-hybrid ‘E-Tech’ version of the Clio.
The introduction of the petrol model drops the price of the Clio to £17,795, making it £3,500 cheaper than the hybrid. It also means the Clio undercuts key rivals such as the Vauxhall Corsa, Skoda Fabia and Seat Ibiza. There are only a handful of superminis that are cheaper than the Clio, such as the Dacia Sandero, MG3 and Citroen C3.
Renault isn’t the only car firm that has re-evaluated its decision to axe petrol models, with Citroen and Jeep both launching petrol versions of cars that were originally set to be electric-only in the UK.