Jump to content

Best Renault to daily/track


pmd400
 Share

Recommended Posts

I’m currently in the market to buy a daily that I can take to track days a few times a year. My research points me to a Renault being the best car for the job. I must be able to carry a baby, toddler and wife for short journeys. I have a budget of about 15k. So the cars I’ve come up with are mk3 Clio 197/200, Megane 225 and 250.

I like the idea of a Clio because of the high revving NA engine and supposed fun factor. The negatives would be the fact it’s smaller, only 2 door and obviously has the least power.

The megane 250 cup I like because of the looks, power, lsd and value. But again a negative would be the 2 doors and the supposed lack of rawness.

So a megane 225 cup has the advantage of being the only 4 door so is the most practical, it’s also the cheapest. But I think it’s the least attractive, apparently not as fun as a Clio, not as powerful as a 250, nor does it have lsd.

I’ve obviously got to test these cars for myself, but what would the experts choose. Also which car would require the least mods reliable track days?

thanks, Josh

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 minutes ago, pmd400 said:

I’m currently in the market to buy a daily that I can take to track days a few times a year. My research points me to a Renault being the best car for the job. I must be able to carry a baby, toddler and wife for short journeys. I have a budget of about 15k. So the cars I’ve come up with are mk3 Clio 197/200, Megane 225 and 250.

I like the idea of a Clio because of the high revving NA engine and supposed fun factor. The negatives would be the fact it’s smaller, only 2 door and obviously has the least power.

The megane 250 cup I like because of the looks, power, lsd and value. But again a negative would be the 2 doors and the supposed lack of rawness.

So a megane 225 cup has the advantage of being the only 4 door so is the most practical, it’s also the cheapest. But I think it’s the least attractive, apparently not as fun as a Clio, not as powerful as a 250, nor does it have lsd.

I’ve obviously got to test these cars for myself, but what would the experts choose. Also which car would require the least mods reliable track days?

thanks, Josh

G’day Josh,
 

l have a Clio 2, a wife, a 5 yo and an 8 yo. Short trips and track days are its job. So far it’s been reliable on track with limited mods (pads, fluids, camber bolts and whiteline arb).

Works well, is fun, but is conventionally slow.

Clio 3s probably take a bit more maintenance than Clio 2s; are known for early syncro replacements and spinning big end bearings (if you’re unlucky). If you can think the kids and seats can fit in the back of a Clio 2 I’d put it on the list too.

From what you’ve described I think the Meg 3 is the answer though; the front doors are long, so rear access isn’t terrible.

Cheers 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome Josh, 

I've got a Clio 2 and I can say that it is great as a daily/city car but can easily eat long distance drives and plenty use theirs as an occasional track car too. If you are curious about practicality, we managed to put 4 blokes + camping gear + 2 mountain bikes on the roof for a camping trip. It's also technically a 5 seater (the person you like the least will probably be squeezed in the middle of the back seat).

Edited by whereislee
  • Haha 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've had and run as a daily as well as used in competition a Clio 2, Megane 225, and a Clio IV. I currently run a meg 265 as a daily.

The Clio 2 is getting older now, and I'd hesitate to recommend it for a daily when kids are involved due to its age and size. 

The 225 was definitely fun, and hugely rapid, but does lack the playful nature of the Clio 2.

The meg 3 is again not as raw as the meg 2, but more capable again, and access to the rear for kids is fine. Unless you're in a tight park. 😅

If the priority is daily, go the meg 3. If the priority is trackwork then I'd aim for the Clio 3.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

For that budget, I’d also consider the running costs and weigh that up against how many track days you’re planning on doing a year…and how “track ready” you want the car to be.

I have a 197 and have spent the equivalent of the purchase price getting it to a point where it will run reliably, and the same again to get it track ready.

if you’re saying 3-4 track days a year, in a kid friendly commuter, for $15K running reliably with low running costs…I’d argue that a Honda Civic or Accord Euro would do that, and run 1:10-1:12 around Wakefield for that budget.  My Clio wouldn’t be able to do that.

But…the Clio is much more fun to zip around in.

Edited by Apu
Link to comment
Share on other sites

40 minutes ago, Apu said:

For that budget, I’d also consider the running costs and weigh that up against how many track days you’re planning on doing a year…and how “track ready” you want the car to be.

I have a 197 and have spent the equivalent of the purchase price getting it to a point where it will run reliably, and the same again to get it track ready.

if you’re saying 3-4 track days a year, in a kid friendly commuter, for $15K running reliably with low running costs…I’d argue that a Honda Civic or Accord Euro would do that, and run 1:10-1:12 around Wakefield for that budget.  My Clio wouldn’t be able to do that.

But…the Clio is much more fun to zip around in.

How many mods would a Clio or megane need to track reliably a few times a year. I understand brake pads, fluid and lines perhaps need to be upgraded. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Same as the other cars.  It’s a matter of how much you want to do and the availability / range / cost of parts available.

For example, coilovers and wheels for the 197 - trying to a supplier locally…

Edited by Apu
Link to comment
Share on other sites

56 minutes ago, pmd400 said:

How many mods would a Clio or megane need to track reliably a few times a year. I understand brake pads, fluid and lines perhaps need to be upgraded. 

If you’re after “reliable” all you need is pads, fluid and tyres. Probably camber bolts to keep tyre wear in check. Well that’s the case for my Clio 182 anyway 

Otherwise it just works

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

28 minutes ago, Deet said:

Dont knock it til you drive one

They get knocked for a reason as that auto is shite. 
Ive bought five and would only ever keep one if I could cheaply do a manual conversion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

An Accord Euro doing 10's at WP, must have missed something.

If you can get past the 2 door thing Meg 3 is the correct answer. Beyond regular maintenance it requires nothing for track day prep assuming you are not chasing a lap time. Even stock pads will be more than up to it.

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, Matt205 said:

An Accord Euro doing 10's at WP, must have missed something.

If you can get past the 2 door thing Meg 3 is the correct answer. Beyond regular maintenance it requires nothing for track day prep assuming you are not chasing a lap time. Even stock pads will be more than up to it.

10s is possible in the Accord Euro but a lot of work would need to be done. There was one on Ozhonda with some head work, intake, suspension etc that did a 1:13.9(148kw atw). 

 

I agree though, the Meg 3 would be the option to go for. 

Edited by whereislee
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, Matt205 said:

An Accord Euro doing 10's at WP, must have missed something.

If you can get past the 2 door thing Meg 3 is the correct answer. Beyond regular maintenance it requires nothing for track day prep assuming you are not chasing a lap time. Even stock pads will be more than up to it.

Not difficult. K-frank (160kW at the wheels), coilovers and a good set of tyres.  With $15K you’d like have change to tweak gear ratios and add an LSD.

The thing about Hondas is a lot of OEM parts can be swapped around.

Edited by Apu
  • Confused 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

But..,back to OP’s post about best Renault, I can only advise that if this car needs to be available at all times, then consider a Renault that is plentiful as parts can take a while to get.

To some extent, that would mean the 182 would be a good choice as it’s almost cheap enough where you can pick one up as a spares car.

197s on the other hand…

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would say a 5-door is the best option. Unless both you and your wife are Pilates instructors.

At 15k you could get a nice 07-09 225 Cup and save some money for maintenance... or a Quaife LSD and a new clutch/flywheel. 

But modifying cars does not add value and if you don't like the car and decide to sell it you will never get that money back. 

Best test drive one and see if you like it. Also test drive a mint Manual Golf GTI, Mk5 or Mk6 will do the trick, they are more upmarket than the Megane but will still have the same type maintenance costs. 

I would hazard a guess that both of these will hold value well over the next 3-5 years if maintained. 

 

 

 

Edited by RallySportNZ
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, Apu said:

Not difficult. K-frank (160kW at the wheels), coilovers and a good set of tyres.  With $15K you’d like have change to tweak gear ratios and add an LSD.

The thing about Hondas is a lot of OEM parts can be swapped around.

Assuming you get the car for free and can find a cheap engine builder or DIY....and the LSD was fitted by the Previous owner.....and horrendous ride quality on coilovers, sounds like a Mega daily....

Your experience with Renault parts availability is clearly different to mine as well, finding a spare Meg 3 is way easier these days is way easier than a spare Clio 2. I get most parts ex Europe in about 5 days, sometimes less.

But as you say, back to OP, many assumptions being made about the situation, like he has space for a 'spares' car.

Back to reality..... hands up all of you that use your Meg 3 as a daily and do 3 or 4 track days a year with nothing more than maintenance, tyres and maybe brake pad/fluid swap? I know there's quite a few of you (us).

 

  • Like 7
Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 minutes ago, chuckovski said:

You've had five Clio IV RSs? Why? 

1 White hail damaged from qld I sold to my nephew as his first car

2 LY front damaged that I fixed and son now owns

3 LY rear damaged to fix 2

4 Black, bought first week of Jan  and flipped back at auctions for easy profit

5 White stat write-off from water, undamaged otherwise waiting for an easy fix car to use it’s parts or just part out, or perfect as a trial manual conversion car 

 

undecided still so it’s sitting at my ol’mans along with a Meg lll wagon parts car that I’ll either part out or do a clone RS 265 wagon.

Edited by 63x1092
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 hours ago, Matt205 said:

An Accord Euro doing 10's at WP, must have missed something.

If you can get past the 2 door thing Meg 3 is the correct answer. Beyond regular maintenance it requires nothing for track day prep assuming you are not chasing a lap time. Even stock pads will be more than up to it.

This.

 

I have 2 kids and 2 dogs. I do school drops. It takes child seats. It has a big boot. Doors are big so getting into the back is easy. Lots of room.

It's quick, fun and I didn't think it is expensive... Unless you go to renault dealership for servicing.

From a practical point of view, its not much worse than our suzuki Vitara 4 door. But a thousand time more fun to drive.

I have an RB7 and had it for 5 years. Great cars.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, 63x1092 said:

1 White hail damaged from qld I sold to my nephew as his first car

2 LY front damaged that I fixed and son now owns

3 LY rear damaged to fix 2

4 Black, bought first week of Jan  and flipped back at auctions for easy profit

5 White stat write-off from water, undamaged otherwise waiting for an easy fix car to use it’s parts or just part out, or perfect as a trial manual conversion car 

 

undecided still so it’s sitting at my ol’mans along with a Meg lll wagon parts car that I’ll either part out or do a clone RS 265 wagon.

Wow. You need some form of medal! Come to think of it I'm pretty sure I've read about most of them. 

Strange you've never had a good auto out of all of them. I must be either oblivious or I lucked out. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

24 minutes ago, chuckovski said:

Wow. You need some form of medal! Come to think of it I'm pretty sure I've read about most of them. 

Strange you've never had a good auto out of all of them. I must be either oblivious or I lucked out. 

I just hate the auto and more so when I want to drop it into 2nd to rev the shit out of it and it won’t let you, just wish they had  release a manual. 
On saying that, it would still be about the same size and weight of a Meg ll and not as enjoyable as a 182

Edited by 63x1092
Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, Jall said:

Meg 3 has seen more track use in the last 18 months than my dedicated Clio track car...

The best track day car is a standard car with pads and fluid. Fight me.

My daily Clio III has seen more track use in the last 18 months than my mostly weekend M2, despite the latter being "faster".

Something about being able to drive it closer to my personal limit with confidence and knowing I could walk away and start over if I binned it.

I'd still cry though.

  • Like 3
  • Haha 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lots of mods to make a Renaultsport reliable on the track?

I must have missed something... I've had my 182 Cup for 12 years now, done many hillclimbs and trackdays over the years, and it's still on the original suspension - last trackday was at 189500km (I am in the process of trying to refresh the suspension, but it managed just fine at the RenoTech trackday in April...).

By all means, go ahead and upgrade parts on your car if you like doing that, and want to, but you don't need to modify an RS to make it reliable on track.

  • Like 6
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 21/06/2021 at 6:20 PM, 63x1092 said:

I just hate the auto and more so when I want to drop it into 2nd to rev the shit out of it and it won’t let you, just wish they had  release a manual. 
On saying that, it would still be about the same size and weight of a Meg ll and not as enjoyable as a 182

I haven't tracked mine yet - hopefully soon and I'll be able to see if I agree. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, chuckovski said:

I haven't tracked mine yet - hopefully soon and I'll be able to see if I agree. 

I don't think you need to track your car to get a sense of how it feels in this regard.

But it all comes down to personal preference, some enjoy the nimble smaller Clio's when others the larger Meganes with turbo's.

On the point of the thread as to which is the best, there's one major problem. The Clio ll & lll and Megane lll only come as a two door  which most don't like as its not practicable with kids and hence not an option when wanting to also be able to track it. This leaves the Megane ll & IV as four doors as an option. The IV's would perhaps be to expensive as a toy for most and the ll's don't seem to be as popular as track cars compared to the others above. One other possible option would be a RS Megane 220 GT as a four door F4R engine car it fits the bill for the practical aspect, but having bought one five weeks ago I would say, one would find it wanting as a track car. I say this as I've lent my 182 to my dad and I've been driving the 225 Cup for the last three weeks on the back of driving the 220 for two weeks and find the 225 to be a fair bit perkier than the 220.

So this leaves you with two options.

1. Get a cheap four door Clio ll and make a clone 172/182

2. Get a four door RS Megane GT (F4R) and make a clone 265/275

And yes, there's one major problem when not all people can do body/mechanical swaps themselves as it would cost a packet to pay someone for the work, so we're back at the start with no answer.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

None....forget it. Think about yours and your wife's back. Not to mention strollers and all the bits. You are in the wrong forum. I'm serious. 

Feel like paying maintenance to your ex cause that is what your wife/girlfriend will be if you chose any of these options. Stop thinking about yourself and think of your other half first. 

 

Try putting a baby seat into a two door and reach in and put the seatbelt on. And repeat that process 20 times straight away and see what you think. 

 

Talking from experience. Had 3 kids already and own the 250. The seats are a way back. I only bought it as the boys are all capable of doing things themselves. 

 

You need comfort like a GT not a Sports coupe. Leave that for after. 

 

Stupid is what stupid does or this was the best troll ever.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 minutes ago, Xrsism said:

Think about yours and your wife's back

Punchy post! I’m not sure if he’s expecting his wife to drive the car if you look at the original post. Also the main issues come with rearward facing kids seats, and these go away pretty quickly once the seats turn around. I’ve been carting around 2 kids in my 182 for nearly 4 years, since the younger one was 18 months old (forward facing). Sure my wife doesn’t want a bar of my car choices, but we knew that going in

If you’ve got the right circumstances and, er, do squats at the gym to accommodate access issues, you can make it work

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

Thinking he is a ute driver. 😇😇

3 Doors and 3 kids would be a squeeze. Agree on the Megane 3, especially with Recaro's, there is plenty of room in the back, but its hard to access and rather cave like.

My brother and I fit in my dads Cordia Turbo as a kids and my mum seemed to haul me and my two siblings around in various small cars in the 80's, Honda Civic, Ford Laser, BMW 320i etc. Both smaller than a modern Clio 4 RS.

I think modern families are mad with their insistence that they need a massive car as soon as the have a child. 

There are two options, a Megane RS 5-Door or more likely a Clio 4 RS. I drove my Clio 4 RS around Europe in 2015, I camped out of it, drove it around a few tracks and took it across both the Italian and Swiss alps. They can be a rather practical car that is fun. 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 minutes ago, woot woot said:

Kia Cerato GT.

actually not a bad idea...We have a base model Cerato for family duties. The GT is a good bit of kit. Well sorted handling, multi-link rear end.

Getting good numbers out of the engine too, 200kw is easy with a tune. There is a good array of Whiteline suspension bits for the Hyundai/Kia products as well as coilovers etc - https://www.ngarage.com.au/

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, RallySportNZ said:

 

Thinking he is a ute driver. 😇😇

3 Doors and 3 kids would be a squeeze. Agree on the Megane 3, especially with Recaro's, there is plenty of room in the back, but its hard to access and rather cave like.

My brother and I fit in my dads Cordia Turbo as a kids and my mum seemed to haul me and my two siblings around in various small cars in the 80's, Honda Civic, Ford Laser, BMW 320i etc. Both smaller than a modern Clio 4 RS.

I think modern families are mad with their insistence that they need a massive car as soon as the have a child. 

There are two options, a Megane RS 5-Door or more likely a Clio 4 RS. I drove my Clio 4 RS around Europe in 2015, I camped out of it, drove it around a few tracks and took it across both the Italian and Swiss alps. They can be a rather practical car that is fun. 

 

 

 

So should’ve kept my mint cordia turbo back in the day, I’m not sure why there’s not a lot of love for the 225’s, love my 08’ cup, 5 years w’out issue, and I’d get my money back if I sold it today.

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, RallySportNZ said:

 

Thinking he is a ute driver. 😇😇

3 Doors and 3 kids would be a squeeze. Agree on the Megane 3, especially with Recaro's, there is plenty of room in the back, but its hard to access and rather cave like.

My brother and I fit in my dads Cordia Turbo as a kids and my mum seemed to haul me and my two siblings around in various small cars in the 80's, Honda Civic, Ford Laser, BMW 320i etc. Both smaller than a modern Clio 4 RS.

I think modern families are mad with their insistence that they need a massive car as soon as the have a child. 

There are two options, a Megane RS 5-Door or more likely a Clio 4 RS. I drove my Clio 4 RS around Europe in 2015, I camped out of it, drove it around a few tracks and took it across both the Italian and Swiss alps. They can be a rather practical car that is fun. 

 

 

 

Mum hauled 3 kids around in a Mazda 121. 2 in car seats at the same time.

Go figure.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, Xrsism said:

None....forget it. Think about yours and your wife's back. Not to mention strollers and all the bits. You are in the wrong forum. I'm serious. 

Feel like paying maintenance to your ex cause that is what your wife/girlfriend will be if you chose any of these options. Stop thinking about yourself and think of your other half first. 

 

Try putting a baby seat into a two door and reach in and put the seatbelt on. And repeat that process 20 times straight away and see what you think. 

 

Talking from experience. Had 3 kids already and own the 250. The seats are a way back. I only bought it as the boys are all capable of doing things themselves. 

 

You need comfort like a GT not a Sports coupe. Leave that for after. 

 

Stupid is what stupid does or this was the best troll ever.

I kind of felt this sounded like a second car...

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 23/06/2021 at 3:21 PM, Matt205 said:

And better suited to the skill level....😝

Yeah when you have rubbish instructors it makes it hard … 🤣😁

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...