The refreshed Renault Sport Megane first revealed earlier this year is now on sale in the UK, but there’s a catch - the manual has fallen by the wayside.
The two derivatives of the hotter Megane (we’ll get to those shortly) are only available with Renault’s six-speed EDC (Efficient Dual Clutch) automatic gearbox. The manual has now gone from all markets, Renault UK confirmed when asked, and a reintroduction at a later date seems unlikely.
Along with the manual, the base ‘280’ version of the RS Megane’s 1.8-litre turbo engine has been ditched, replaced with the 296bhp RS300. There’s no stiffer Cup chassis option for the base car either - if you want that, you have to plump for the RS300 Trophy. That’s a change we’re not going to argue with - given the extra gear the Trophy includes in its standard spec, it’s always made far more sense than the old 280 with the Cup pack fitted.
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Although Renault’s hot hatch might look much the same from the outside, it has received a minor nip and tuck. There’s new LED lighting front and rear, a redesigned grille, and door handle lighting.
The interior has been given a makeover too, with notable changes including a new 10-inch digital instrument cluster, a 9.3-inch infotainment system, and swankier materials used for the seats, steering wheel and centre console.
You’re looking at £32,995 for the RS300 or £36,995 for the RS300 Trophy. Options include 19-inch Interlagos wheels (£800 on the RS300, standard on the Trophy), a panoramic sunroof (£1000 on both) and Recaro sports seats (£1600, Trophy only). The new VW Golf GTI, for comparison, starts at £33,460 for a manual version and costs £34,960 with a seven-speed dual clutch ‘DSG’ auto.