This is the 4th generation of Renault’s popular Megane and every generation of the Renault Megane has had its own style. This generation has a more upmarket look and feel to it.
It’s certainly an eye-catching car, with a far more interesting design than the previous version. One of the visuals that stand out for me is the shape of the LED daytime running lights and the wide stance of the Megane.
The interior’s also been upgraded quite a bit, I like the soft-touch materials, which give the Megane a German-car like feel. The interior space is also roomier and seating is more comfortable.
The Megane also handles well and the suspension setup is in my view just right. It is not too soft and also not too harsh that you would feel the uneven bumps in the road.
With the Megane GT model Renault has introduced four-wheel steering. This feature allows for more precise steering, better turning circles at low speed and more stability at higher speeds. This is not really new technology but not many manufacturers were utilizing it. Nowadays more manufacturers are starting to use the tech but is normally an expensive option. One of the first cars I remember growing up that had this feature was the Mazda 929, the 929 was available only overseas however.
Standard kit includes:
Dual climate control, rear-park distance control, auto-wipers and –headlights, cruise control and plenty airbags.
There are 3 engine choices:
– 1.6 petrol good for 84kW and 156Nm (claimed fuel consumption of 6.4 litres per 100km)
– 1.2 turbo petrol that produces 97kW and 205Nm (claimed fuel consumption of claimed 5.3 litres per 100km)
– 1.6 turbo petrol that means business pushing 151kW and 280Nm (claimed fuel consumption of: How heavy is your right foot ?)
The MéganeGT 1.6 turbo is a real hot hatch, but in my opinion not a match for VW’s mighty GTi nor the oval badged brute the Focus ST.
The entry-level Mégane Dynamique version is a well-priced, normally-aspirated 1.6 (not available to drive at the media launch) with outputs of 84kW and 156Nm, available in five-speed manual only with a claimed fuel consumption of 6.4 litres per 100km.
More spec and power is available in the GT Line which comes with a 97kW/205Nm 1.2 litre turbo petrol engine and a choice of six-speed manual or a seven-speed dual-clutch auto called EDC. The auto I drove at the launch was an easygoing and notably quiet performer, with none of the buzziness expected of a small engine, and its claimed 5.3 litres per 100km is very wallet-friendly if true.
The range-topper is the Mégane GT, moved along by a 151kW/280Nm 1.6-litre turbo engine and available only in EDC auto. It falls under true hot-hatch status but has reasonably lively get-up-and-go that made for entertaining progress around Red Star.
All versions standard with 5-year/150 000km warranty and 5-year/90 000km service plan. Services take place at 15 000 km intervals (10 000km on Megane GT).
The Megane is a great car, fun to drive and quality is much better than before. It is however competing in a difficult segment that includes VW Golf 7, Honda Civic, Opel Astra, Mazda 3, Ford Focus, Hyundai i30 to name a few.
For more info visit: http://www.renault.co.za/cars/NewRenaultMegane/index.html