Designed to appeal to older buyers than the Clio, Captur and Kadjar, the next model Mégane (due in the UK this July) will be powered by a range of turbo petrol and diesel engines emitting as little as 96g/km of CO2.
Prices will start below £17,000. Although the entry-level cars will be powered by a choice of four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines producing between 108bhp and 128bhp, the launch range will unusually include a ‘headline car’ in the shape of a 202bhp petrol engined GT version tuned by Renaultsport. A 163bhp diesel will come along later, along with a hybrid version using a 1.5-litre diesel and electric motor.
The old Sport mode is being re-presented as RS Drive on GT models. Before the Mégane RS arrives, as it almost certainly will, this mode will offer the sportiest dynamics in the range. These modes will take in other functions apart from the usual driving ones, such as the action of the massage seats and the cabin lighting.
The new Mégane is bigger in every dimension than the previous model, giving more knee space and a bigger boot than the Golf or Focus, at 434 litres. Much attention has been paid to improving quality, with the aim of producing “cars with a Latin skin and a German heart,” according to design boss Laurens van den Acker – and of tempting those who would normally ‘go premium’ with an Aufdi A3, BMW 1 Series or Mercedes A-Class.
Only entry level Méganes won’t get a full colour head-up display and a 7.0in multimedia display as standard. More luxurious models have an 8.7in touchscreen to control control the sat-nav, apps, radio and phone.
UK spec cars will have adaptive cruise control, automated emergency braking, lane departure warning, speed limit warning and blind spot monitoring, with a hands-free parking function, parking sensors, a reversing camera and automatic headlights on the options list.
GT Line cars will range from £19,600 for a 128bhp diesel to £25,500 for the 202bhp GT Nav petrol.