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Volkswagen Polo GTI vs Renault Clio RS

17 June 2010 9 Comments

So Volkswagen is bringing out yet another successful Polo GTI. Hot hatchs are taking over the world it seems, but hey you don’t see me complaining do you? NOT A CHANCE… So here is a bit of a predicament Volkswagen has the super sexy Polo GTI and well Renault has the super sexy and safe Clio RS.

Which do you choose..?
The Volkswagen Polo GTI produces 132 kW from a little 1.4 litre TSI engine.
The Renault Clio RS produces 147.5kW from its naturally-aspirated 2.0 16V engine.
So here we can already see that the Renault has more power than the 2010 Vw Polo GTI.

Both competitor have been put on a diet, both the GTI and the RS have a nice power to weight ratio.
Weighing in at a cool 1,184 kg, the Volkswagen Polo GTI is the lighter of these to beauties.
The Clio RS comes in close, weighing 1,240 kg. Don’t worry about the extra few Kg’s, remember the Clio has a bit more power pushing those extra love handles, lol.

This is now the interesting bit, how close is this?
The Vw accelerates to 100 km/h in just 6.9 seconds and reaches a top speed of 229 km/h
The Renault accelerates to 100 km/h in just 6,9 seconds as well and reaches a top speed of 225km/h
Now isn’t that just crazy. So at the end of the day it all boils down to driver experience.

As far as vehicle design, I would have to say Volkswagen and Renault definitely have something special here. For example the lines that run along the Volkswagen Polo and then look at the rear diffuser on the Clio RS. These features just add to the cars aggressive nature.
Which would you buy if you had the spare money lying about?


  • Jomacher said:

    The first thing I want you to take notice of is reliability but that comes without saying. Looking pricewise the Renault is approximately R20 000 more expensive arguably justifiable by the bigger motor. But of couse, who wants a bigger motor that’s governed to the speed of a 1400cc. Now, there is where VW has just hit the nail on the head. The reason the CITI was discontinued was because of it’s inability to decrease their carbon emmisions. Hence, we get the Polo Vivi. Drifting off the point here but doesn’t that seam like VW is actually strategically taking over the market by becoming the top seller in South Africa? Quickly overtaking Toyota as South Africa’s best selling vehicle.

    Another thing to take into consideration is what goes on behind the scenes. With the economic scare we all suffered last year, people no longer go for the nice car or the fastest car. People go for the reliable, low maintenance, low travel cost and of course low insurance premiums, hoping that they will drive their desired cars for the next 10 years. Let’s face it. Renault has not had a great name in the industry the past years, however, that is about to change. By offering gauranteed bye backs and numerous other offers to sweeten the deal they are really making an impression, to the person that is either uninformed or has the money to spend on a car that attracts them in such a way that it suddenly changes their perspective, justifying their actions by screaming “I am different”. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But at the end of the day, there is a huge difference between services, maintenance and after-sales service.

    Which brings me back to the VW Polo GTI. There is nothing else in the same class that roars reliability, than a VW. There’s nothing else that produces performace quite like “GTI”. And now even more Environmentaly Friendly without compromising performance.

    Trust me, your first choice was the Polo. Why even think twice ?


  • Blair (author) said:

    Hi Jo you’re on the money! Nobody wants to pay R20k more for a car that cant outrun a 1.4, ok yes the GTI is a forced induction model, but never the less it is still has a 1.4 engine capacity.
    Very good point, well I’m not surprised if Volkswagen overtake Toyota. I wouldn’t by a Toyota for the fact that when I decide to ease off the throttle I might actually have the throttle stuck down, lol.

    Exactly, Volkswagen has an amazing track record as far as reliability goes, if the car does happen to need parts you can get the parts from almost any reputable spare parts dealer.

    You see the one issue iI have with the Clio is that its a French car, parts are going to be extremely overpriced and like you have mentioned people seem to be feeling the economic crunch a little more these days.

    I think there is no competition as far as reliability in this instance,
    So for me personally I wouldn’t invest in the Renault.
    I heard through the grape vine that the new Ford ST is going to be a tough competitor in the hot hatch market!


  • Angelo said:

    Nice comment Jomacher. Look the VW is probably the ‘safe’ choice and people buy them because of all the points you’ve mentioned – reliability, eco friendly, maintenance etc… Now Renault are trying to appeal to the same VW crowd and saying ‘Hey! wana get noticed!?’ Also for the tuning community the renault is ready for a turbo conversion and more possible modifing whereas i’m not sure how much further a 1.4TSI can be modified… Also Blair the 1.4TSI produces an impressive 249nm whereas the RS only has 215nm… Still if i had the choice it would be the RS no questions asked!


  • Angelo said:

    Overpriced parts???? Sorry polo windscreen wipers are R1200 and new front brake pads are R2500!!! And we all know what FORD stands for Blair! Nuf said…


  • Blair (author) said:

    Hahah yes we do know what the FORD(Fix OR Replace Daily) stands for… lol
    You made a very valid point there Angi, the Rs has the perfect engine size to start paying around with, and yes the 1.4 engine of the Polo probably is well tuned!
    Nice comment Angelo…


  • Jomacher said:

    Thanks Angelo. Valid points made. I respect your choice on the Renault and hope to change your mind though. As for the turbo, the person that’s gonna buy any new vehicle is going to wait 5 years to start modding it anyway to protect the warranty. That said, by that time there will be new turbo upgrades etc. available for the GTI. The Renault owner will however have to search far and wide for any modification parts or upgrade possibilities, if any.

    VW might be expensive on parts and I’m sure Renault won’t make it much cheaper especialy taking in consideration that they won’t sell half of what VW will be selling which in turn means that they will have to import less parts and in some cases will have a waiting period for some parts on order. The Renault will be exclusive and the most probable owner will not want to modify it.

    I really think that Ford will be a much better competitor against VW in this regard but at the end of the day it will come down to the consumer and their choice. I hope I changed your mind and know that in reality, VW will be the clear winner here.


  • supersifu said:

    The clio outruns the polo on the track everytime easy. The cornering is much better a lot more G‘s can be pulled out of that car. The polo does‘t even come close. The Clio is even faster than most higher priced bigger fast cars on a track. The overall performance is just better on curved roads or track‘s. It‘s not made for drag racing!!


  • Lucian Rajah said:

    I have driven VW’s all my life, I’ve had a 1st gen Polo Playa, a 2nd gen Polo Playa and a Golf 4 Gti. They were all fantastic cars. I have never had a problem or issue that took more than a week or costed an arm or a leg.

    I have recently test driven the new Polo GTI, it was flawless in every way, the interior was well appointed, the exterior is subtly tasteful and the engine is a screamer…

    However, one month later, I found myself owning a Clio RenaultSport and I wouldnt trade it for any GTI. I know any rational decision leans towards the VW but I would choose the sheer feeling of sitting in it, driving it and the smile it puts on your face over paying a little extra anyday….


    Ray Reply:

    Lucian, replying after a year later, but gotta aggree with you. I also had VW’s, but theres no thrill like driving a CLIO RS… i also got one and enjoying it… pulling all the way to 8000revs! aaahhh, heaven!!!!


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