Skip advert
Advertisement

New Renault Megane R.S. Ultime is the last of the Renaultsport line

47 years of Renaultsport has come to a close with a special edition of the Megane R.S.

In 1976 Renaultsport became the sporty sub division of Renault and since then it's produced some of the world’s best hot hatches, plus a few iconic race cars in Formula One, WRC and even Formula E. Defunct in 2021, the brand has somewhat belatedly launched a final fling in the shape of the new Megane R.S. Ultime. 

Advertisement - Article continues below

Based in Dieppe, France, Renaultsport’s final product is based on the Renault Megane R.S. Trophy and only 1,976 will be built (a nod to the year the company was founded). Unveiled at this year’s Tokyo Auto Salon, the Ultime features some cosmetic changes to help it stand out, although its mechanicals are unchanged over the Trophy. 

New graphics appear on the roof, bonnet, side and rear bumper are inspired by Renault’s new logo and 1976 is inscribed on the right hand side of the car. Four paint finishes are available on the Ultime, Star Black, Pearl White, Tonic Orange and Sirius Yellow. The wheel arches have been tweaked with a 60mm wider front and 45mm wider rear, to give it an even more imposing stance. New side air vents coupled with R.S. Vision headlights and that huge central exhaust also add to the Ultime’s look. 

Some influence has come from the hardcore Megane Trophy-R, although only in the form of track-focused Bridgestone Potenza S007 semi-slicks. There’s also Renault’s ‘Fuji Light’ 19-inch wheels, lowered Cup suspension and the Trophy’s 4CONTROL four-wheel steer system. 

The engine remains unchanged over the Trophy’s with a 1.8-litre turbocharged four-cylinder producing 300bhp and 420Nm of torque. Only the automatic EDC gearbox will be available in Europe, sending power through a mechanical differential resulting in a 0-62mph time of 5.7 seconds. 

Inside the Ultime there are Recaro bucket seats with Alcantara upholstery (the same as what you’ll find in the Trophy) but what is different is the numbered door sills and signature of Laurent Hurgon on the centre console. Hurgon was Renault’s development driver for the Megane R.S. and broke the front-wheel drive lap record at the Nürburgring in the Megane Trophy-R. 

Sadly, Renault has said the Ultime isn’t coming to the UK - although right-hand drive models have been produced for the Japanese market. There’s no word on pricing but expect a price tag significantly higher than the £36,995 the old Trophy demanded.

Now read our list of the best hot hatchbacks...

Skip advert
Advertisement
Senior news reporter

A keen petrol-head, Alastair Crooks has a degree in journalism and worked as a car salesman for a variety of manufacturers before joining Auto Express in Spring 2019 as a Content Editor. Now, as our senior news reporter, his daily duties involve tracking down the latest news and writing reviews.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

Renault Megane E-Tech review
Renault Megane E-Tech - front tracking
In-depth reviews

Renault Megane E-Tech review

The electric Renault Megane E-Tech impresses with a large boot, lots of standard equipment, and a fine driving experience
5 Apr 2024
New Lancia Ypsilon HF hot hatch marks the return of hallowed performance badge
New Lancia HF logo
News

New Lancia Ypsilon HF hot hatch marks the return of hallowed performance badge

The HF performance version of Lancia’s new electric supermini will arrive in 2025 with 237bhp on tap
14 Mar 2024
Cupra Leon line up revised with new Design Edition trims
Cupra Leon 242bhp
News

Cupra Leon line up revised with new Design Edition trims

With the addition of new Design Edition models, Cupra’s hot hatch now starts from £30,455
13 Sep 2023
New Volkswagen ID.3 GTX: first spy shots and all the latest on VW’s electric hot hatch
Volkswagen ID.3 GTX - front cornering
News

New Volkswagen ID.3 GTX: first spy shots and all the latest on VW’s electric hot hatch

Volkswagen’s family-friendly ID.3 will soon get the sporty GTX treatment
7 Sep 2023

Most Popular

Car Deal of the Day: sensational BMW M2 is a bargain at this price!
BMW M2 - front tracking
News

Car Deal of the Day: sensational BMW M2 is a bargain at this price!

Our Day of the Day for 18 April is the formidable BMW M2 performance car
18 Apr 2024
New Nissan Qashqai gets angry, as best-selling family SUV receives aggressive facelift
Nissan Qashqai reveal - front
News

New Nissan Qashqai gets angry, as best-selling family SUV receives aggressive facelift

In addition to its new much sharper design, the Qashqai now features Google apps and voice assistant built in
17 Apr 2024
New 2024 Audi A3 takes the fight to BMW and Mercedes with £32k price tag
Audi A3 Saloon - front action
News

New 2024 Audi A3 takes the fight to BMW and Mercedes with £32k price tag

The updated Audi A3 is available now, with the hot S3 version due from May
16 Apr 2024