The Renault Sandero RS has been revealed at the Buenos Aires motor show in Argentina.
Powered by a 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine developing 143bhp and connected to a six-speed manual gearbox, the RS makes good on a promise made by Renaultsport boss Patrice Ratti to produce a sportier version of the Sandero. As well as its extra power, the RS gets tuned suspension, ESC, steering and brake settings.
The extra power means the Sandero RS is capable of reaching 62mph in eight seconds, and has a top speed of 125.5mph. It weighs 1161kg - the heaviest Sandero weighs 1083kg by comparison.
The Sandero RS is the first RS-badged model to be built outside Europe. It is set to be sold exclusively in Latin America from next year, with no plans to bring the car to the UK. That decision is likely due to the fact that the Sandero is badged as a Dacia here, rather than a Renault.
The most powerful version of the Sandero currently on offer in Europe produces 101bhp from its 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol engine. The power gains for the RS model might seem modest,but Ratti had already noted that big gains weren’t needed. “A Sandero is lighter than a Clio, so you don’t need that much power,” he said to Autocar last year.
Ratti also revealed that the new model is intended to spearhead the RS sub-brand’s growth in the emerging Latin American market.
The Sandero RS will sit as an entry-level option to the Renaultsport range, which also includes the Clio RS and Mégane RS. Hot versions of the Captur and Kadjar are also known to be on the cards, alongside possible future hot versions of the Twingo.
Renault has also released a video showcasing the development of the car.