What was a few years ago a simple model line has now evolved into a fully fledged car in Renault’s lineup. It feels and it drives so different than the regular Megane that you might be tempted to think they’re made by different manufacturers.
And even though this is a car meant to fill the gap between the regular Megane and the RS model, it’s not just a cosmetic job. It’s a car developed with the help of the Renault Sport people and after driving for a couple of days, you can truly feel that.
First off there’s a lot of Renault Sport badges anywhere. Then there’s sportier exterior design, the optional 18inch alloy wheels and lastly there’s the interior. Which features these great looking and quite comfortable seats and some blue accents all over the place.
But overall a very good looking design inside and out.
This car is front-wheel drive only, it has a 1.6TCE turbocharged engine capable of producing 205HP and 280Nm of torque. It is basically the same engine you would find in a Clio RS but with 40 more Nm of torque. And as in the Clio RS’ case, this engine can only be coupled to a 7 speed EDC automatic transmission.
The 0 to 100km/h is 7.1s and max. speed is 230km/h.
The Megane GT also features four wheel steering. Which turns the rear wheels in the opposite direction to those at the front, at low speeds, making it easier to manoeuvre around town for example. Above 50mph, the front and rear wheels steer in the same direction, to boost stability in faster corners.
The Good Bits
The engine is quiet and refined but if you drive it like you should a Renault Sport product you’ll find that it’s very eager to rev and it pull quite well. Torque comes in from low down in the rpm range so you don’t really need to rev it out that much to get all the power out of it.
It feels like there’s definitely more power to be extracted from this engine but most likely Renault will never do that as it doesn’t want to step on the tail of it’s newly released Megane RS.
The brakes are pretty impressive as well. We’ve got 320mm discs at the front and 290 ones on the back. They stop the car very well and after going up and down this mountain for a couple of times they show no sign on fade. Which is very impressive for stock brakes.
The four wheel steering makes the car so much fun around corners, it feels light on its feet, agile and it shows no signs of understeer when I pushed the car hard. Couple that to the firm but excellent suspension system keeping that car planted on the tarmac and this is shaping up to be quite the package.
The Not So Good Bits
Well, first there’s the engine sound. Which is fake and it’s being pumped through the speakers. Nothing new nowadays, everybody does this, but that doesn’t make it good.
The steering is quite numb. It doesn’t offer any feedback from the road and it’s not that quick either. The suspension is the one that actually offers you feedback from the road but that only happens because it’s quite firm.
So firm actually that you feel every imperfection in the road. And that might be good for a weekend drive or a track day, but it’s not really ideal for city driving. It’s just too harsh and too firm for a daily driver. Maybe if you buy the car with the 17inch might help.
This is definitely not a hot hatch, as it’s a bit underpowered but it’s a great driving car that looks and feels very well put together.
And considering the starting price is just a smudge over 25.000 euros, it’s an option you should explore if you’re in the market for a sportier family hatchback.