When the original Renault Megane appeared in 1995, it was considered a larger alternative to the successful Clio, which had made it's debut 5 years earlier. But the Megane was not just a size bigger, it was also a pioneer for safety, racking up 4 stars in the Euro-NCAP test, among others due to the 3-point seat belt for the fifth, mid-rear seat, which was uncommon at the time. This focus on safety has lead to the Megane being a favorite among Europeans.
The third evolution of the Renault Megane appeared in 2008, with a distinctive, sporty design. The rear of the Megane II had been scrapped, and was replaced by a more stylish and functional design. With the security still being a priority, Renault also put focus on reliability, that was a big problem in the Megane II.
The Megane offers various engines for various costumers, from compact 1.2 and 1.6 liter engines producing around 100 bhp, to a 2 liter, turbo-powered engine, resulting in over 250 bhp, a 0-100km/h time of just over 6 seconds, and a top speed of 250km/h - a milestone for other family cars to follow.
A lot may have changed during the years, but Renault has chosen to stick to their front wheel drive configuration, that had proven successful on the Megane I rally cars. Megane III RS was also fitted with huge brakes to stop the mighty force. Nothing less than 340mm ventilated discs on the front and 290mm on the back.
As the earlier models, the Megane III is a perfect basis car for a rally/touring car racer, and has already seen many victories in different championships.
Wrote by Morten Pedersen