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197 test drive

Discussion in 'Motors' started by Ev0, 23 Jul 2006.

  1. Ev0

    Capodecina

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 13,914

    Had a test drive in the new Clio 197 today.

    Impressions are:

    Ride/Handling is very very good
    Brakes are very good
    Gearbox is nice
    Power delivery has been smothed right out

    The car felt so flat through some speedy bends, much impressed.

    The gearbox was odd, it's a 6 speed but they've not just done a shortening of the ratios and make 6th really long job. According to the sales guy (who I know from previous tests of the megane) the 6th cog was meant as a "track day 6th rather than a cruising 6th. So as a result the car will hit 65ish in second (as we tested, I asked the salesman if it'd hit 60 in second he said why don't we try :) ) yet if it tops out at 134 the ratios after second are pretty close, I was "cruising" at just under 4krpm in 6th at 80mph, that's pretty much the same as my 5th now!

    I drove a blue one but they had a black one in the delaer which looked 10x better.

    Would I have one? Yes. If it was a 12/13k car. But with optional Xenons, Climate control and Met Paint at 17k no.

    I asked the sales guy which he would have out of the clio 197 and a megane 225 varient. After doing some trackdays with them all he said 197 hands down.

    Second hand I think these will be a good buy and on track I think they will be ace. Really didn't notice the extra weight much. You no longer get the "5k kick" but it's because it pulls from much lower down now and due to the stunning gearing (which could get annoying if you do a lot of sitting on the motorway but for enthusaistic driving is quite good) it pulled very well whatever gear I was in.
     
    Last edited: 23 Jul 2006
  2. spaz

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 16 May 2005

    Posts: 2,414

    Location: Bedfordshire

    Seems to sum up what a lot of people have told me about the car, a very very good car, but for 17k? Nah. A lack of standard equipment is the main put off really, but with the obligatory Renault discounts it may be a car that I'll consider purchasing a few years down the road.
     
  3. Scrutinize

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 4 Apr 2003

    Posts: 7,663

    Too expensive for what it is in relation to the costs of the old 172/182 and the fact they had the full spec as standard. Once the discounts kick in it will be worth it. Although to be fair full list on a 182 wasn't much less but only a fool paid close to that. And the discounts were long established so list price was never close to the brochure price.

    Problem is its, the way I see it, is that it costs the same as a new megan 225 (with discount) but not specced as well. Also the drop in fuel economy (used to get 36-38 out of my 172) makes the megan look a more attractive package.

    Its also in a bit of a limbo area of the market. Not in the same class as Golf GTI of Octavia VRS or even the Leon Cupra/FR which are bigger cars and the VRS can be had for the same money. No more civic Type R to compete with an the new one will be up with the Golf etc price bracket. The Astra VXR is again in the Golf bracket.

    So it leaves the New Corsa VXR and Fiesta ST and Ibiza Cupra to compete with certainly when you look at the top speed (gives it away) two of which used in Evo/Top Gear?? on road test comparisons. Big problem is it costs a loot more than these atm and if all are discounted the ST is what 12k, Ibiza 12k and Corsa when its launced 12-13k??.

    I supose it finds it nieche in being cheper than the big boys but unlike before where its performance was higher than a lot of the competition this time its not and the case. Fine its greater than the Fiesta etc but untill the price comes right down it, despite being great is in limbo.

    17k to spend = VXR or Octavia VRS.

    13K to spend = Fiesta ST or Corsa.
     
  4. Jonny69

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 3 May 2004

    Posts: 17,670

    Location: Kapitalist Republik of Surrey

    Is there really that much demand for 6 gears? Surely if it's not another one on top you'll find yourself changing gear all the time?
     
  5. Scrutinize

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 4 Apr 2003

    Posts: 7,663

    It matches the engine in this car and is desinged for track use where the car is likely not to reach more than 130 ish considering where these cars race couppled with the added weight.

    Not so good for on road economy and I wonder if they will revise it when the competition like the corsa VXR tops out at 140-150 (if it does). It will be interetsing to see a 1/4 mile, 0-100 etc though.

    I had a look on boradspeed and they have the clio up for £14.5k which although without all the options is an ok price but not when a fiesta ST can still be had for well over 3k less and a vrs 2k more.
     
  6. Joe T

    Capodecina

    Joined: 1 Apr 2003

    Posts: 11,770

    Location: Northampton

    6 gears seems to be the in thing over the last few years. I guess the "logic" ;) is the more gears the better!
     
  7. Fusion

    Capodecina

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 10,585

    Location: Notts

    This is key. I would pick a Fiesta ST over a 197, because it represents better value. I don't need mind melting pace in a small hatch, I can have plenty of fun with the Fiesta's two litre, 150ps Duratec unit. If I had sixteen grand, I'd wait for a while and pick a used Focus ST, which quicker than the 197, and more refined.

    The 197 won't be the runaway success that the 172 and 182 were. It's priced a couple of grand over the band Renault should have aimed for.
     
  8. Scrutinize

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 4 Apr 2003

    Posts: 7,663

    Doh, how could I forget about the Focus ST. When the 172 came out but not quite so much with the 182 there was no competition really in the hot hatch market that offered such a good value package. It was only really the Civic Type R vs 172 for a while. For example early 2000's the Astra Mk4 only came close in GSI/SRI turbo guse but not in the handling.

    I mean the 197 will still be the hottest of the small hatches (corsa vxr???) but there are so many really good performance cars/hatched avaiable now the market has moved on.
     
  9. Biohazard

    PermaBanned

    Joined: 29 Aug 2003

    Posts: 31,334

    0-60 in 6.9s, top speed of 134mph and weights in at 1240Kg. PSML

    Pants
     
  10. Fusion

    Capodecina

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 10,585

    Location: Notts

    Just seen that Fiesta ST's are £10732 on Broadspeed. 0-60 is a second slower, and the car is 103kg lighter. Good buy.
     
  11. -=Maxed=-

    Hitman

    Joined: 20 Oct 2002

    Posts: 586

    Location: Newcastle

    I dont see how you can compare the Fiesta ST to the 172 or 197...

    They are soo slow.. warm hatch!!!
     
  12. One More Solo

    Capodecina

    Joined: 29 Dec 2004

    Posts: 16,008

    Location: Manchester

    From an aesthetic standpoint the new Megane is gorgeous, was really impressed when I saw it.
     
  13. R4z0r

    Mobster

    Joined: 26 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,523

    Location: London

    You can already pick them up for about 15K at a Broker. Give it a year or so and I reckon you'll be able to pick up new ones for about 14K from a Broker.

    As good as the 197 seems to be - it's not worth 17K IMHO. Half the appeal of the 182 was the price:performance ratio. I mean, I picked up my brand new 182 w/ mettalic paint, and both cup packs for under 12K which I thought was a bargain. Now the 197 is so expensive Renault have positioned it too close to the Focus ST/Civic R/Golf GTi ...
     
  14. Axeboy

    Mobster

    Joined: 13 Nov 2002

    Posts: 4,777

    Location: Scotland

    Why is it pants?

    Same as the thread on the fiesta ST, you just bail into it with some 'pants' comments.
     
  15. Biohazard

    PermaBanned

    Joined: 29 Aug 2003

    Posts: 31,334

    erm because it is pants?

    my Renault 19 16V 1.8ltr 137bhp 116lb/ft can do 0-60 in 7.2, the 19 is nearly 150 kilos lighter and can hit 140mph and thats without mentioning handling.

    so exactly what are you getting for an EXTRA 60BHP? Well for a start a shaving of 0.3sec 0-60 WOW! Then the top speed is down by a good 6-7mph.

    Yes the 197 Clio is such a step forward let me rush out with my cheque book and buy for £17,000 car that would get raped by a 13year bucket that cost me £350. :rolleyes: :rolleyes:


    PANTS PANTS PANTS
     
  16. Axeboy

    Mobster

    Joined: 13 Nov 2002

    Posts: 4,777

    Location: Scotland

    I see you are a thinking man.

    I mean, the fact that the extra weight is all down to some minor requirements in terms of safety and build quality.

    I mean, id slightly prefer to be crashed into when driving a 197 and not a 19 16v. Nice enough cars as they were...

    Lets not get into ride, comfort, security, refinement and all that, they dont mean anything in this day and age.

    Why dont you go out, buy a skateboard and bung a fireblade engine on it? I mean, that would be perfect for you.

    Everyone can have an opinion, and yet some will be listened to a little more than others. Evo used to have a 19 16v too... but i read his review with interest.
     
    Last edited: 23 Jul 2006
  17. Biohazard

    PermaBanned

    Joined: 29 Aug 2003

    Posts: 31,334

    mate I don't buy a car thinking about crashing it, I buy a car thinking of driving it and doing so fast for as little money as possible. So a bloated over priced slow ugly Clio surely isn't appearing on my wish list.

    I've never been able to skateboard in my life :p
     
  18. Biohazard

    PermaBanned

    Joined: 29 Aug 2003

    Posts: 31,334

    Yes I am a thinking man, and this topic is quite easy.


    £350 - 137bhp/116lb.ft - 7.2seconds - 140Mph Ncap safty rating of 4 star

    £17,000? - 197bhp/?lb.ft - 6.9seconds - 134Mph Ncap safty rating of 5 star


    on you go mate

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: 23 Jul 2006
  19. Biohazard

    PermaBanned

    Joined: 29 Aug 2003

    Posts: 31,334

    well the Clio williams took its front setup pretty much directly from the 19 16V. Larger wheel base, better drag coeffient figures etc....
     
  20. Acolyte

    Mobster

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,779

    Location: Bristol

    Dude your Renault 19 wont hit 140mph no matter how much you think it will.