Renault Megane RS Coming In 2017 With Manual Transmission And Four-Wheel Steering Photo:
Kez Casey | Sep, 18 2015 | 6 Comments

The recent reveal of the Renault’s latest Megane hatch at the Frankfurt Motor Show delivered a smart looking five-door with a range of new technology.

But, it did not include the enthusiast's heart-throb, the high powered and sharp handling Megane RS. Instead, the range topper for the time being is the Megane GT, which fills the role of a warm hatch, rather than a performance tear-away.

Renault insiders are quick to reassure punters that new Megane RS will join the range. Currently under development, the Megane RS is expected to arrive in 2017.

Until then, the current three-door RS range will continue on to fill the hot hatch void.

The most interesting news for purists is that, unlike the Clio RS, which only comes with renault’s EDC automatic transmission, the Megane RS could arrive with both manual and automatic transmissions.

CEO of Renault Sport Technologies, Patrice Ratti has this to say in an interview with Autocar:

“The EDC move has done us a lot of good, opening up massive sales boosts in Japan and Australia for instance, our second and third biggest markets, but we now see that probably in an ideal world we would have both EDC and manual options."

That isn’t an assurance that both transmissions will arrive, and if the development budget doesn’t extend to two transmissions, an EDC automatic will be the default choice.

A boost in engine output is also on the way, with Ratti describing additional power as part of the development package that arrives in tandem with steering and suspension upgrades.

Renault isn’t expected to lock horns with Honda, and its 228kW Civic Type R, but with the current Megane RS275 rated at 202kW it wouldn’t be hard for Renault to come close.

Handling and agility are more likely to be the focus of the new Megane RS, with the new model set to adopt the four-wheel steering system that debuted on the Megane GT

“It reduces the turning radius at low speeds and adds agility on winding roads, at high speed it introduces stability, so there is less adjustment and the car steers exactly the moment you turn and also that added stability means we can use shorter steering ratios to make the steering wheel much more alert.” Ratti said of the steering system.

As for bodystyle, Renault remains tight-lipped about the chances of seeing the next Megane RS as a three-door. Three-door models are falling out of favour with consumers.

Current generation Megane RS 275
Current generation Megane RS 275

Both the Clio RS, and Ford’s new Focus RS have made the switch from three to five doors, so there’s a very real possibility the next Megane RS will arrive in the five-door suit worn by the rest of the range.

Expect a range of unique styling touches when the Megane RS does arrive, with a set of deeper bumpers, large air intakes, and a larger rear spoiler set to join lowered suspension, bigger alloy wheels, and sporting interior touches for an appropriate high-performance look.

MORE: Renault News and Reviews

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