Unveiled at the Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix over the weekend, the Clio R.S. (Renault Sport) 16 made its star-studded debut at the Principality in the hands of Renault F1 Team driver Kevin Magnussen. Monaco’s famous Grand Prix circuit was the site for a first look at a new concept car driven by Magnussen. By choosing Monaco, Renault Sport makes the link between Clio R.S. 16’ both around circuits and on ordinary roads. The Clio R.S. 16 grafts the Renault range’s highest-performing engine into a Renault Clio and features the colors of the R.S. 16 F1 single-seater.
“Our aim was to produce a concept car with genuinely outstanding performance credentials,” noted Patrice Ratti, Managing Director of Renault Sport Cars, leader of the project which particularly inspired the development team’s specialists. “On paper, producing a Clio R.S. powered by our most potent engine, namely the 275-horsepower two-litre power unit which delivers peak torque of 360Nm, was an extremely appealing idea, but we had to make sure it was feasible.”
Thanks to new working procedures involving teams from the worlds of motorsport and road cars, the incubation of the highest-performance road-going Renault Sport car ever took just five months.
Finding the ideal way to house the engine, transmission and cooling system of the Mégane R.S. 275 Trophy-R was a significant challenge. The exhaust system was also revised as a function of the engine’s potential, while the suspension was engineered to match the car’s outstanding performance characteristics. Careful attention was paid to the sound produced by the car, too, and an Akrapovič twin exhaust system was selected.
The design and development team dealt successfully with the constraints inherent in the Clio R.S. 16 project (body widened by 60mm, 19-inch wheels and optimization of the engine cooling system) to produce an expressive, sporty stance. The result is enhanced by an LED R.S. Vision chequered-pattern lighting signature featuring exclusive multi-faceted reflector technology.