Renault has clinched fourth-place in the 2018 Formula 1 constructors’ world championship at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

A strong sixth-place finish by outgoing driver Carlos Sainz at Yas Marina sealed the French manufacturer’s best result since returning to F1 as a fully-fledged works outfit in 2016.

Despite losing Nico Hulkenberg in a dramatic opening-lap crash, the French manufacturer triumphed to come out on top in a close season-long midfield battle and beat rivals Haas to fourth place - behind only Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull - by 29 points.

Driver Ratings - Abu Dhabi GP

Renault finished the campaign with 122 points, more than double the tally it managed on its way to claiming sixth spot in the 2017 standings, having taken ninth in its first year back in the sport in 2016.

“It’s a great way to finish the season,” Renault team principal Cyril Abiteboul said.

“P4 is where we wanted to be in the championship; it’s a good result and a representation of the fantastic team effort on and off track and from both drivers.

“The race is a good summary of our year. We had a disappointing qualifying and difficult first laps, but the team kept its head down and made excellent strategic choices in a race that went in our direction.

“We were able to take advantage of very strong race pace and managed the lead we had against the others to make sure we got to the end without any incidents.

“Obviously it was a shame to lose Nico early on, but he’s been a huge contributing element to the season result that we secured.

“I’d also like to thank Carlos for all he has done for the team since joining us. He’s been a massive team player and wish him all the best as he joins our partner McLaren next year.”

Hulkenberg capped off his strongest F1 season to date by securing seventh in the drivers’ standings on 69 points, while Sainz ended the year in 10th with 53 points.

Sainz believes his best finish of the season was deserved and acted as “payback” for disappointing results earlier in the campaign.

“It was a really great result for us and this sixth place feels a bit like payback for France and Mexico,” Sainz added. “We deserve it! I had a very strong pace all the way and it was a perfectly executed race.

“We achieved fourth in the constructors’ championship and it is a very big result for us. This last race of the season firmly demonstrates all the progress made this year.

“I leave this team feeling very happy with what we’ve achieved and as a driver it makes me especially motivated.

“This was my last race with the Renault team and I thank everyone for the last year and a half. I’m not leaving the family and look forward to continue to see many of my Renault colleagues as I join McLaren.”