The Renault Megane R.S. Trophy is the most powerful Renault Sport production car ever – and is now on sale at UK dealers priced from £31,810.
Producing 300hp, it’s 20hp (and £4,315) up on the Megane R.S. 280, and is offered as a six-speed manual or six-speed EDC dual-clutch auto (for £33,510).
If the price hike sounds a bit steep, Renault immediately assuages some of your concerns. The Megane R.S. Trophy is fitted as standard with the Cup Chassis Pack, which is a £1,500 option on the base R.S. 280.
It also gets bespoke styling features and some engineering tech of its own – such as ceramic ball bearings in the turbocharger to reduce friction, and bi-material front brake discs measuring a healthy 355mm.
Red Brembo brake calipers add some brand-name kudos, and the 19-inch ‘Jerez’ alloy wheels are fitted with Bridgestone Potenza S001.
Optional in 2019 will be lightweight 19-inch ‘Fuji’ alloys and bespoke-developed Bridgestone Potenza S007 tyres. The combination gives more grip, more bite, and saves 2kg per corner.
How fast is the Megane R.S. Trophy’s 1.8-litre turbo? A smidgen faster than the standard car, but not by the extent you might expect. 0-62mph takes 5.7 seconds, instead of 5.8 seconds, and the top speed is 162mph versus 158mph.
It sounds the part though. This is the first Renault Sport model with a mechanical valve in the exhaust, turning noise from rich to blaring at the press of a button.
The real magic comes in the corners. The Cup chassis is 30 percent stiffer springs, 25 percent firmer dampers and 10 percent stiffer anti-roll bars. There is a Torsen mechanical limited slip differential on the front axle, and 4Control four-wheel steering on the rear.
Spot a Trophy from a badge on the front bumper blade and red-trimmed diamond-cut alloys. Renault’s letting owners pick vivid Liquid yellow paint and, inside, choose optional new Recaros that mimic the race buckets on the Megane II R.S.
The seats drop down 20mm lower than standard and, as they’re covered in Alcantara and are non-electric-adjust, they weigh just 23.5kg – 11.3 percent less than the standard seats.