New Renault Megane R.S. Trophy 2019 evaluation
The newest Renaultsport Megane Trophy has some huge boots to fill – as a result of the badge has adorned among the quickest and most involving creations ever to return out of Renault’s efficiency division. Now we’ve had an opportunity to see the way it fares within the UK.
To recap, the Trophy will get a revised model of the Renaultsport Megane’s 1.8-litre four-cylinder turbocharged engine, with 296bhp and an additional 10Nm of torque, at 400Nm (or 420Nm with the twin-clutch field as an alternative of the usual six-speed handbook).
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The automobile additionally options the Cup chassis choice (suspension tweaks and a limited-slip differential) from the common mannequin, and throws in several entrance brakes which are designed to withstand fade extra successfully, and an unique design of 19-inch alloy wheels.
In fundamental figures, these mods trim 0.1 seconds off the Megane 280’s 0-62mph time and add 4mph to the highest pace.
The truth past the numbers is extra advanced – however nonetheless compelling. In fact, the Megane doesn’t really feel rocket-ship quick in a straight line in the identical manner a Honda Civic Kind R does. There’s a teeny little bit of lag because the engine spools as much as simply over 1,500rpm, after which a powerful surge of mid-range punch.
It feels sooner than the common automobile, thoughts you, and the revised exhaust sounds good, with a bit extra aggression to its observe and satisfying pops if you elevate off the throttle.
But it surely’s the dealing with that units the Megane aside from most different sizzling hatches. The combination of that limited-slip differential and a rear-wheel steering system makes it extremely agile and fast to reply to inputs; the nostril is eager to dip into the apex of corners, and whereas there may be some torque steer for those who stand on the throttle exiting a curve, it’s effectively contained.
The steering has a satisfying weight to it, though it might be an overstatement to say it’s brimming with suggestions. And we nonetheless desire the handbook gearbox to the dual-clutch auto. Renault’s six-speeder will not be as slick as Honda’s, however for those who’re optimistic sufficient, it nonetheless delivers extra satisfaction than paddles ever may.
The trade-off for the agility and physique management is a journey that’s nearly on the suitable facet of agency. Tyre roar may additionally show a problem for those who’re planning to make use of the Trophy on the motorway on daily basis.
Inside, it’s typical Megane fare – roomy sufficient for many makes use of, and properly completed in lots of (however not all) of the important thing areas.
There are only a few sporting add-ons: a swap to manage the driving modes, the odd Renaultsport emblem and aluminium pedals. It appears unusual, too, that the tasty Alcantara-trimmed Recaro seats are non-compulsory even on this ‘ultimate’ sporting Megane, though for those who select them (and you must), you get to take a seat about 20mm decrease than you’ll within the common automobile, bringing you that teeny bit nearer to what’s happening beneath you.