2024 Renault Megane R.S. Ultime review

2024 Renault Megane R.S. Ultime review

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The world may appear to be a surreal place to automobile lovers at massive, particularly whenever you’re behind the wheel of a automobile just like the Renault Megane R.S. Ultime – the final in a line of among the most revered sizzling hatches ever constructed by the famed Renault Sport division.

In days passed by on three-way comparisons within the difficult Victorian excessive nation the place I favoured the Megane RS280 and its cat-like four-wheel steering over the likes of extra highly effective rivals just like the Ford Focus RS and Honda Civic Sort R, not less than within the damp circumstances that prevailed on that specific event.

Sadly, it’s all come to one thing of a ceremonial finish, as Alpine as soon as once more picks up the reins amidst its transition into an all-electric efficiency car division.

There’s a bunch of electrical vehicles on the way in which together with a high-performance model of the Renault 5 E-Tech, dubbed A290 (as per the idea), which is predicted to characteristic the powertrain from the Megane E-Tech and appears particular from the pics we’ve seen to this point.

However the brand new EV model of Alpine doesn’t formally launch till 2025, and we’re unsure when vehicles will lob in Australia. Within the meantime there’s simply 1976 examples of the Megane R.S. Ultime obtainable worldwide, in recognition of the 12 months Renault Sport was first established.

Of that manufacturing run, solely 40 have been earmarked for Aussie patrons who received’t thoughts paying a premium for the privilege of proudly owning the crowning glory of one of the vital celebrated B-road heroes of the final 20 years. On the time of publish, simply 4 are nonetheless obtainable.

You’re unlikely to overlook it on the street, particularly in our tester’s Liquid Yellow paint job. There are three different equally satisfying colors obtainable, together with a number of different distinctive additions to the standard R.S. system.

The Megane R.S. has all the time been a formidable looker with its beefed-up guards, black wheels and F1-style entrance splitter, once more in gloss black. However the R.S. Ultime makes much more of a press release.

There are the matte black ‘damaged’ stripes adorning the roof, bonnet, rear bumper, doorways and all 4 guards. The 12 months Renault Sport was established – 1976 – may be very faintly inscribed within the stripes on the motive force’s aspect, too.

The black-accent theme continues with the logos, door handles, window frames, wheels, entrance and rear bumper vents, in addition to the entrance bumper’s Method 1 blade. It appears to be like particular, in addition to purposeful.

You additionally get a number of additional goodies above and past the usual R.S.Trophy, together with light-weight wheels, particular Bridgestone tyres, Recaro buckets in Alcantara, and a construct plate.  

How does the Renault Megane R.S. Trophy fare vs its rivals?

View an in depth breakdown of the Renault Megane R.S. Trophy in opposition to equally sized automobiles.

Renault Megane R.S. Trophy cutout image

Renault

Megane R.S. Trophy

How a lot does the Renault Megane value?

Simply 40 examples of the Renault Megane R.S. Ultime have been allotted for Australia, priced from $67,500 earlier than on-road prices for the six-speed handbook transmission and $70,500 earlier than on-roads for the six-speed dual-clutch computerized – a $4500 premium over the common R.S. Trophy.

On the time of publish, simply 4 are left with sellers. Whereas icon standing and real limited-edition rarity depend for lots, competitors within the hot-hatch enviornment has additionally produced some distinctive rivals with inexpensive value tags.

Most notable is the Honda Civic Type R solely with handbook transmission from $72,600 drive away, in addition to plenty of variants of the full-fat Hyundai i30 N (begins from $46,200 for the handbook), however particularly the i30 Sedan N with its extra dynamic chassis.

Toyota has its nice wanting GR Corolla with AWD from $64,190 plus on-roads and the smaller GR Yaris priced at $51,390 excluding on-roads.

Renault Megane R.S. Ultime pricing:

  • Renault Megane R.S. Ultime MT: $67,500
  • Renault Megane R.S. Ultime EDC: $70,500

Costs exclude on-road prices

What’s the Renault Megane like on the within?

One look at these fully-wrapped Alcantara Recaro buckets and you understand you’re in a hardcore sizzling hatch from Renault Sport.

These pews have been designed with among the most aggressive bolsters you’re more likely to discover in a road automobile earlier than going to a full-tilt racing seat.

They’re additionally completed with twin-stitching in crimson/white, whereas ‘R.S.’ and ‘Recaro’ are superbly embroidered into the seat backs in Vivid Pink.

It’s the identical story within the second row – correctly bolstered outer seats in the identical gentle Alcantara cloth with double- twin-stitching in crimson, in addition to the seat belts all spherical.

There’s the compulsory Liquid Yellow accents tastefully displayed in strips on the entrance door playing cards and centre console for heritage impact.

I’m not likely a fan of the faux-carbon fibre vinyl on the door trims – extra Alcantara would have seemed extra the half for this last version.

At eye stage, the plastics are respectable, however dip under and also you’ll discover the cheaper pockmarked selection that extends to the again of the entrance buckets. Once more, it’s the final of the lineage and Renault is asking high greenback for the Ultime – and it’s these smaller trim bits which may irk some prospects.

However, all of the vital bits are carried out proper. The pedal set is polished stainless with loads of rubber dots for grip, and the peerlessly sized steering wheel rim together Alcantara/leather-based is properly tactile and options the Renault Sport emblem in the identical Liquid Yellow.

The column-mounted paddle shifters are an odd form and actually solely lengthen upwards from the centre spokes, making handbook shifting barely awkward at instances. Maybe that’s simply me being idiosyncratic however I discovered it cumbersome as a rule, given I like to make use of the handbook shift choice.

Whereas the chunky metallic transmission selector is throwback from Megane’s earliest days, I genuinely benefit from the intuitive nature of grabbing the stick, if you’ll, as old-school as that may be today with the worldwide EV shift.

Renault has carried out its greatest to maintain up with its rivals on the know-how entrance, with a digital driver’s show and a portrait-style infotainment touchscreen that meets most wants with good readability, color, responsiveness, and fortunately Apple CarPlay.

There are additionally loads of USB-A ports for each seat rows, together with rear air vents, cupholders, armrest (in Alcantara) and enough rear legroom for outer-seat passengers. Sadly, the middle-seat passenger within the rear is robbed of each under-thigh help and foot house.

For youths, there are two ISOFIX factors for the outboard seats, in addition to three top-tether anchor factors.

Within the boot you’ll discover a commendable 434 litres of house due to its vital flooring depth. There’s no spare tyre or house saver, only a bottle of goo and a small electrical compressor.

The rear seats are 60/40 break up fold however folding each side nonetheless depart a big lip they usually don’t precisely fold flat for simple loading of longer gear.

What’s underneath the bonnet?

It’s the identical powertrain because the Megane R.S. Trophy – a turbocharged 1.8-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine making 221kW of energy at 6000rpm, and 420Nm (400Nm for the handbook) peaking at 3200rpm.

Each dual-clutch and handbook variations of the Ultime use six-speed transmissions, and declare the identical 0-100km/h dash time of 5.7 seconds as a result of differing kerb weights between the 2 – 1433kg for the auto and 1420kg for the stick shift.

The twin-clutch model additionally advantages from digital launch management.

It’s strong grunt in contrast with the likes of rivals such because the Hyundai i30 N (hatch or sedan), and its 2.0-litre turbocharged four-pot making 206kW/392Nm.

There’s a 50L gasoline tank requiring 98 RON, and the heavier dual-clutch variant is barely thirstier utilizing 8.3L/100km, whereas the lighter handbook claims 8.0L/100km.

Drive it for pure pleasure although, and gasoline consumption will rise sharply to 12L/100km plus at instances. And given its relatively quick gearing and six-speed transmission, it may be much less economical than some on the freeway – all of this relies by yourself driving type.

Beneath the Megane R.S. Ultime is similar closely honed ‘Cup’ chassis from the Trophy, in addition to Renault Sport’s four-wheel steering system and a Torsen limited-slip entrance differential for max adhesion with these sticky Bridgestone tyres.

There’s good stopping energy, courtesy of beefed-up brakes by Brembo with slotted rotors. From its earliest iteration, the Megane R.S. has been outfitted with excellent stoppers.

How does the Renault Megane drive?

No query this can be a sizzling hatch that delivers a great deal of real suggestions from the very second you sink into these fairly excellent Recaro buckets that wrap you up good and tight – you received’t transfer a millimetre in essentially the most demanding of corners.  

When you’re on the transfer, there’s loads of poke to excite regardless of being down on displacement in contrast with its bigger 2.0-litre rivals. Regardless, the Megane R.S. Ultime nonetheless delivers strong punch all through your entire rev vary.

There’s loads of cabin noise from the engine and short-geared DCT transmission, but it surely’s that very same visceral expertise that makes this particular variant such a hoot to pilot.

Reality is, it’s now not as fast as its extra fashionable sizzling hatch rivals, not less than out of the blocks, but it surely’s within the dealing with division the place this sharply tuned Renault delivers its knockout punch.

When Renault first launched its four-wheel steering on Megane R.S. variants there have been some amongst the press who didn’t heat to it – sighting irregularities in steering calibration and really feel.

However, hardcore runs in Victoria’s excessive nation revealed a cat-like means to out hustle the easiest sizzling hatches. Nothing has modified in that regard.

It’s a agency trip with the stiffened Cup suspension setup however on the plus aspect, it feels correctly planted and capable of make very fast directional adjustments thanks partially to that very same four-wheel steering which additionally requires minimal steering enter from the motive force – even within the hairpins.

Grip ranges are actually fairly uncanny, irrespective of how enthusiastic you may be. At instances I discovered myself making an attempt to catch it out. Not an opportunity.  

Add to that the pops and crackles from its diminutive four-pot (in Sport after all) which give it a decently loud voice, together with severe mid-range go, and also you’ve obtained one of many all-time nice sizzling hatch experiences that can encourage the seek for as many bends as you’ll be able to muster in your favorite less-trafficked street. 

What do you get?

Megane R.S. Trophy highlights:

  • 4Control four-wheel steering
  • Brembo high-performance brakes
  • Torsen limited-slip differential
  • Lively valve exhaust system
  • 9.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system
  • Wired Apple CarPlay, Android Auto
  • Satellite tv for pc Navigation
  • 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster
  • Bose encompass sound system
  • Keyless entry, begin with ‘stroll away’ locking
  • Computerized LED headlights
  • Rain-sensing wipers

R.S. Ultime provides:

  • 19-inch Fuji black light-weight alloy wheels
  • Bridgestone S007 Tyres
  • Recaro Alcantara entrance bucket seats
  • Numbered construct plate
  • Daring matte black stripes
    • Roof
    • Bonnet
    • Rear bumper
    • Doorways
    • Guards
  • ‘1976’ decals
  • Black exterior accents

Colors:

  • Liquid Yellow
  • Orange Tonic
  • Diamond Black
  • Pearl White

Is the Renault Megane secure?

The Megane R.S. is unrated by ANCAP. Again in 2015, nonetheless, Euro NCAP gave the usual Megane 5 stars.

Customary security options embrace:

  • Autonomous emergency braking
  • Blind-spot monitoring
  • Lane-departure warning
  • Entrance, front-side and curtain airbags

How a lot does the Renault Megane value to run?

The R.S. Ultime is backed by Renault’s five-year, unlimited-kilometre guarantee.

There’s additionally 5 years of roadside help, and 5 years of capped-price servicing totalling $2645.

CarExpert’s Tackle the Renault Megane

In years to return, it’s doubtless any iteration of the Renault Megane R.S. will achieve collectable or must-have standing, particularly because the world fast-tracks in the direction of an all-electric future.

However the R.S. Ultime can be simply that rather more particular – decreed by its restricted construct numbers alone, by no means thoughts the light-weight wheels, sticky tyres and people epic Alcantara-wrapped Recaro pews.

Even in its last iteration, the Renault Megane R.S. continues to be a automobile that may put a broad smile on the face of essentially the most discerning fanatic, and for that it deserves Corridor of Fame standing.

Click on the photographs for the total gallery

BUY: Renault Megane R.S.
MORE: Everything Renault Megane R.S.



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