Herald Sun - Motoring - - Head To Head -


At $52,990, the Re­nault Sport 275 Tro­phy is about $30,000 more ex­pen­sive than the stan­dard Me­gane. That doesn’t sound like great value, but the 275 Tro­phy is not your av­er­age three-door hatch. It has fan­tas­tic leather/al­can­tara race seats, sat­nav, a 7-inch touch screen and dual-zone air­con. Sporty touches in­clude black 19-inch al­loy wheels, a ti­ta­nium sports ex­haust, Brembo brakes and a suede steer­ing wheel. There is a gen­er­ous five-year/un­lim­ited km war­ranty and capped ser­vic­ing is $1196 for three ser­vices.


The Me­gane is a good look­ing car, es­pe­cially as a three-door hatch and the Tro­phy is even smarter, although the yel­low and graph­ics might be too much for some. In­side there are bril­liant wrap-around seats, a rally steer­ing wheel and faux car­bon fi­bre on the dash. There is rea­son­able room in the rear, but get­ting in can be awk­ward as the Me­gane has only two doors.


A ver­sion of the 275 Tro­phy re­cently set the fastest front-drive time around Ger­many’s Nur­bur­gring, so it is no slouch. Its pace comes from its en­gine, the han­dling pack­age and rel­a­tively low weight of 1376kg. The 2.0-litre turbo four-cylin­der makes 201kW/360Nm (in RS mode). It man­ages a 0100km/h time of 6 sec­onds, but it feels faster than that. The only gear­box is a six-speed man­ual.


Six airbags, a re­vers­ing cam­era and a five-star crash rat­ing but no ad­vanced driver aids.


The 275 Tro­phy is not as fast as the STI, but that doesn’t mean it is less fun to drive. It makes you feel like you are driv­ing fast, even when you are do­ing sen­si­ble speeds, thanks to won­der­ful steer­ing and a pre­cise gear­box. The en­gine is not as ex­plo­sive as the Subaru but is fun to rev out and lets out a bril­liant howl.

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