PH buying guide: Renaultsport Clio 172/182


Cheap speed doesn't come much cheaper or speedier than a Renaultsport Clio in either 172 or 182 forms. All offer 0-62mph in around 7.0 seconds, twinkle toes handling and prices from £1,000 for a car with ticket, tax and life left in it.

Phase 1 cars can now be had for shed cash
Phase 1 cars can now be had for shed cash
If you want the best example out there, a 182 Trophy in perfect nick will set you back £5,000, which sounds a lot for a car that's known to be fragile in the build stakes. The Clio Renaultsport, though, is destined for classic recognition and, while buying one now might not yield a profit, you'll be able to say you were there and experienced the best small hot hatch of its generation.

Arriving in June 2000, the Clio 172 Renaultsport instantly made a mockery of the competition with a price from £15,995. It was light, fast, affordable and slapped an indelible grin on its driver's chops. At a time when Volkswagen was still knocking out the lardy Mk4 Golf GTI and Peugeot had lost its way, the Clio 172 showed the world what a hot hatch should be and introduced a wider audience to the genius of Renaultsport.

Trophy commands a premium but with reason
Trophy commands a premium but with reason
Updates and upgrades followed, with the stripped out, harder core 172 Cup pitching up in August 2002 with a bargain £12,995 price tag. The 182 succeeded the first generation Clio Renaultsport in January 2004 and continued the value offer with a price of £14,600. This model spawned its own Cup model and then the ultimate Clio Renaultsport version in the 182 Trophy, which was made solely for the UK market in acknowledgement of Britain being the most eager buyers of Clio Renaultsports.

With so much hot hatch fun on offer from such little outlay, everyone should try a Clio 172/182 Renaultsport. Here's what to expect and what to look out for.

Sales figures for Clio Renaultsport in UK
Clio 172 Phase 1: 1,357
Clio 172 Phase 2: 3,059
Clio 172 Cup: 2,392
Clio 182: 5,222
Clio 182 Cup: 539
Clio 182 Trophy: 500


Owner's view:
"As someone who has driven a BMW 325i Touring for three years, the Clio totally brought back my love of driving. I just cannot imagine taking the BMW for a drive for the hell of it, but I am always thinking of reasons to nip out in the Clio."
Damian Welch


Buying Guide contents
Introduction
Powertrain
Rolling Chassis
Body
Interior
Search Renaultsport Clios in the classifieds now

Photos: Renault/Max Earey

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Comments (175) Join the discussion on the forum

  • Sir_Dave 16 Apr 2013

    RenOHH said:
    Is a timing check relatively simple SD? Cam cover off and whack the horse shoe in? If it is, I would definitely get it checked and see if 519 will do a little note on some headed paper for the price of a 1/2 hrs labour. Having said that, guaranteeing someone elses work may be a problem for any mechanic...

    If my responses earlier seemed abrupt it was because I was on my phone.
    Yeah, its pretty simple as far as im aware, most specialists will do it for a small fee smile

    I remember when James Stone (when at JMS) checked my 1st Trophy's, was wrong from the factory!!

    Nice one Renault hehe

  • RenOHH 16 Apr 2013

    Is a timing check relatively simple SD? Cam cover off and whack the horse shoe in? If it is, I would definitely get it checked and see if 519 will do a little note on some headed paper for the price of a 1/2 hrs labour. Having said that, guaranteeing someone elses work may be a problem for any mechanic...

    If my responses earlier seemed abrupt it was because I was on my phone.

  • Sir_Dave 16 Apr 2013

    normal bloke said:
    Is there any way I can get my local garage's work checked by a 172 guru? Also, would a written guarantee from him be of any value? Thinking about that, I suppose no one can guarantee not to over rev on a track day, so I suppose I'm grasping at straws here.
    Short of going over there and grilling the technician on his own work, I'm not sure what I can do? frown
    To be perfectly honest, as has been said, 99% of the buying public wont know any better anyway! The fact that the work has been done recently, with receipts/invoices will be enough for most smile Although being in Bedford, Danny at 519 Automotive would be able to check the timing for you at least.


  • normal bloke 16 Apr 2013

    Is there any way I can get my local garage's work checked by a 172 guru? Also, would a written guarantee from him be of any value? Thinking about that, I suppose no one can guarantee not to over rev on a track day, so I suppose I'm grasping at straws here.
    Short of going over there and grilling the technician on his own work, I'm not sure what I can do? frown

  • RenOHH 16 Apr 2013

    Sir_Dave said:
    lol. I wouldnt be so daft as to let anyone touch my engine that wasnt a friend with the correct knowledge wink Was the northener that i bought it from that got diddled by DaddyDayCare in Doncaster ... you know whats what as you use BTM and Mick youself lol.

    Appreciate you being Devil's advocate though. You are indeed correct, anyone can f*ck up an F4R, i used to love it when NW Performance were around, loads of cambelt snappers to break laugh
    Hmm would 'daddydaycare' be a specialist too? laugh

    You're right, I won't go anywhere else but a specialist with mine. But its not always going to end badly. A bad garage is a bad garage, no one should be taking a hammer to a cam!

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