The Renault Clio V6 Renault Sport is a hot hatch based on the Renault Clio launched in 2001.
The Clio V6 was based on the Clio Mk II, though it shares very little by way of parts with that car. The 3.0 V6engine, sourced from the Renault Laguna was upgraded to around 230 PS (169 kW; 227 bhp) and placed in the middle of the vehicle where the more ordinary Clios have rear seats - making this car a two-seater hot hatch. The Clio V6 was facelifted in 2003 to resemble the Clio Mk II Phase 2, and was extensively reworked following criticisms of the original Clio V6's handling (especially in the wet). The new vehicle had an upgraded 255 PS (188 kW; 252 bhp) V6, but also much more understeer than the Phase 1, a reworking of the suspension due to Tom Walkinshaw's TWR concern.
In order to accommodate the radical change from front-engine, front-wheel drive hatchback to mid-engine, rear-wheel drive two-seater quasi-coupé, the car had to be extensively reworked structurally, leading to the Phase 1 version being some 300 kg (660 lb) heavier than the sportiest "regular" Clio, the 172 Cup. Due to this, even though the V6 model had significantly more power, it was not remarkably faster in a straight line accelerating to legal road speeds than the 172 Cup - accelerating to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 6.2 seconds compared to the Cup's 6.7 seconds - though its maximum speed was significantly higher (146 mph compared to 138 mph). The Clio V6 Phase 2 gained even more weight but offset it with even more power resulting in a reduced 0-60 mph run at 5.9 seconds and a 153 mph (246 km/h) top speed.
At the time of its launch in 2003, the upgraded Phase 2 Clio V6 was the most powerful serial produced hot hatch in the world with 252 bhp.
Though based on a utilitarian hatchback, the Clio V6 is not a practical family car. With an average fuel consumption of 20 miles per US gallon (12 L/100 km; 24 mpg), this resulted in an empty fuel tank in just over 300 miles (480 km). The loss of the back seats and most of the boot space, due to the engine placement, results in a severe restriction in luggage space - there is only a small space in the front where the engine used to be, suitable for a holdall or week-end groceries, a small netted area behind the seats plus a small stash area under the tailgate. The enhanced steering makes tight manoeuvring a little challenging, the turning circle is 13 m (42.7 ft) - around three car lengths - turning what might normally be a three-point turn into a five-point turn.