Hot Hatch

Renault Keeping It Old School With The Next RS Megane

If it aint broke don't fix it.

Predicting the future is tough, but it's likely that the current Renault Megane RS series will be remembered in the years to come as quite possibly one of the greatest hot hatches ever. From the moment it burst onto the scene, the Megane RS 250 blew the competition out of the water, and it's a testament to the car's cornering pace that the only hot hatches that have beaten the car around the Nurburgring have all had a sizable power advantage. It truly is a special piece of kit, and it's a shame that we'll need to wait ages before we can import the damn thing into the States.

Alas, this era of mega-hatches that we find ourselves in does mean the current Megane RS 275 is starting to get outclassed on the specification sheet. Plus, with a new Megane model now on sale in Europe, the clock is ticking down for the current Renault hot hatch halo car. However, it looks very much like the next Renaultsport Megane will stick to the formula that made the current car so great, rather than chase the all-wheel drive carrot that Ford, Audi, Volkswagen and Mercedes find themselves fixated on. In an interview with Auto Express magazine, Renaultsport boss Patrice Ratti confirmed the next hot Megane will indeed stick with the front-wheel drive format.

Ratti also revealed that Renault is aiming to keep a manual transmission in the next RS Megane, and his comments that the current hot Megane's engine already has the capacity to produce 300 hp suggests that should be the bare minimum power output from the next model. That's not to say the next Megane RS is stubbornly sticking to old school solutions, though: The next car will be the first fast Megane to get a dual-clutch auto box, for instance, and Ratti explicitly stated that "Renaultsport will have to do something about" the advanced chassis systems featured on more modern rivals like the Ford Focus RS. The car's still a while away, but we're pretty pumped for it right now.

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