I just attended the launch of the new Renault Megane RS Trophy 300. But from my couch. Damn you, Covid-19
What is it?
It’s the often yellow pinnacle of Renault performance, rendered as a fiery hot hatchback. It’s tall of pedigree too thanks to Renault’s century of racing, most recently culminating with a very successful F1 presence. Gone is the 3-door bodyshell of its predecessors but you do still have the six speed manual gearbox option previously seen in its the 2005, 2011 and 2014 Trophy predecessors.
How does it look?
Like a fireball. Upfront you get an expensive chin guard, I mean an F1 inspired blade diffuser, with a similar treatment along the rear skirt. Triple-tone Jerez 19 inch alloy wheels shod in S001 Bridgestone Potenzas live in each corner. Behind them are large bi-material brakes with red Brembo calipers – which you’ll need out there in the asphalt. More marks of distinction include grippy Recaro Alcantara seats, Trophy decals and badges inside and out and finally those RS Vision fog lamps that VW loved so much they riffed in on their new GTI.
How does it go?
One would imagine very, very quickly considering the data.The Trophy 300 comes with the firm Cup chassis, featuring a rally-inspired suspension with four hydraulic stops in the shocks, a torsen LSD and 4Control four-wheel steer. Its heart is a 1.8l turbo mated to the 6 speed manual or EDC auto. Both make 221kW, while the latter produces 420Nm, or 20Nm more than the manual. Either way you’ll be tearing up the 0-100kph in just 5.7 sec 0-100kph and only run out of steam at 260kph. Again, from a 1.8, that makes for a high ‘power per litre’ figure. Add into the mix an RS Monitor for telemetry, and a Race Mode for maximum artillery fire and you’ve got the fiercest rival to the Hyundai i30N, Honda Civic Type R and VW Golf GTI of them all.
Should you buy one?
Seven. 7 cars. In the country. That’s all Renault South Africa have managed to muster for Mzansi so it’s extremely rare. And at R775k (manual) and R800k it’s also extremely dear. But it is my humble opinion that if you can afford one, then source one, you should totally pull the trigger on owning a Renault Megane RS Trophy 300.
Quick Stats: Renault Megane RS Trophy 300
Price: R774,900 Manual / R799,900 EDC Auto
Powertrain: turbo 1.8l fwd, 221kW, 400Nm/420Nm, 6-speed manual/auto
Performance: 0-100kph in 5.7 seconds, 260kph top speed
*Includes 5y/90,000km service plan