Comparison: Renault Megane 275 Trophy-R VS Mercedes A45 AMG

kikimiqbalsoft - Enthusiasts can love the Renault Mégane RS 275 Trophy-R, however you’d be barmy to shop for one once an additional £1...

kikimiqbalsoft - Enthusiasts can love the Renault Mégane RS 275 Trophy-R, however you’d be barmy to shop for one once an additional £1760 luggage the additional powerful, five-seat Mercedes A45 AMG, right? Nic Cackett decides

On the evening of twenty-two Gregorian calendar month, whereas browning his triumphant 7min fifty four.36sec lap of the Nordschleife within the new Mégane RS 275 Trophy-R, i'm wondering if Laurent Hurgon, Renault’s driver, was aware that it had been nearly six years to the day that the manufacturer had been in European country activity constant achievement with the R26.R.

Famously pillaged of even the enclose its windows, that Car – a stamina-testing rattle box of brilliance – cracked the front-drive record, too, and clearly provided the example employed by Renaultsport engineers in Dieppe for the follow-up.

There will be fewer samples of the Trophy-R, however the lunge for immediate acclaim at the Nürburgring is definitely no completely different.

The time – a modest four.0sec shortening of the record antecedently control by the Seat Leon Cupra 280 – is a smaller amount necessary than the bragging rights that associate with it. With them secured, Renault expects the Car to be ordained the foremost formidable hot hatch on sale – the sole title, it should be noted, that will justify its formidable value hike.

Back in 2010, this Mégane started its hot hatch life because the RS 250 and, in Cup format, retailed at simply £21,995. The Trophy-R pictured here, with choices, is £39,300. Even with none box ticking, the new limited-edition Car is £7500 quite the R-less Trophy model on that it’s primarily based.

Admittedly, that pays for a few terribly trick things – not least the adjustable Öhlins dampers and composite springs that square measure a £2k further on the quality Trophy – however largely it reimburses Renault for the task of hollowing it out.

The deletion of the air-con, stereo, soundproofing and back seats puts the Car altogether at odds with the rivals that currently exist on the far side £30k.

The R26.R solely extremely had the Ford Focus RS to fret regarding, however currently there square measure a bevy of premium choices designed by makers WHO instinctively favour a large shoehorn over Dieppe’s wrench set. Their emollient is output, not lightness, with most in far more than 300bhp. all of them associate with 5 seats, too, and square measure all faster in a very line.

Consequently, the qualities presumably to send the gracile Mégane into anaphylaxis square measure power, usability, speed and sumptuousness.

Read the Renault Megane 275 Trophy Great Britain initial drive

Step forward the Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG, the foremost costly hot hatch on sale and nonetheless currently solely £1765 north of the Renault. It’s kitted to the nines, ballistic, accommodating, machine drive and a dual-clutch child's play to drive. will the 271bhp Trophy-R upstage it over 2 days of driving, or is it close to get a 355bhp AMG-style reality check? Onward.


Appropriately for a one-of-30 prima woman, the Trophy-R should be collected on the way to Blyton Park, the chosen circuit for day 2 of this dust-up.

Cue ninety minutes of freeway add the lily-white Mercedes – during this case, my former long-run check Car. constant things continuously stand dead set Pine Tree State in AN A45: (a) it’s therefore mind-bendingly stiff for a hatchback that 100kg of yours actually barely warrants a hat-tip from the floorpan, (b) the engine’s tractability is astonishing, given the facility extracted from simply 1991cc, and (c) it seals shut sort of a coffin.

With a snapper and snapper’s baggage accessorial, the Car should be aged for 1800kg, however the hint of heft at low revs is punctually flooded by the 332lb linear unit on the far side 3000rpm.

The A45’s lack of adjustive dampers means it ne'er settles down quite as effectively as, say, a Volkswagen Golf R would, and wider seams between the slabs on concrete sections on the M25 square measure tripwires for its splintery ride quality.

But the seats square measure wonderful, the handwheel and dashboard square measure rock-like wedges of price and, back on asphalt, it steamrollers north with all the quietness and certainty of a barnacle suckered to a torpedo.

Then, in no time the least bit, at what wont to be RAF breakage law officer, I swap. Sixty years past, Bomber Command wont to thrust novice pilots into the night’s sky from here aboard bone-tough, linen-thin Vickers Wellingtons, and that i suspect that the Mégane’s industrial blart wouldn’t are entirely unknown.

Following the A45’s deadened hush, the hollow racket of the four-pot, even at idle, appears outstanding. As will the untufted plastic connective tissue that it bounces off, pockmarked everyplace with blanked-out buttons and kit deletions. Lost for any price else to try and do, the picture show screen currently for good and forlornly displays solely time and date within the high right. 

Truthfully, though, it’s difficult not to savour the Renault’s lack of compromise. Under way, it lives up to the promise, moving about with an enlivening and hard-bodied fizz.

The ride comfort is impressive, the expensive Öhlins reproducing the A45’s spirit-level flatness but without the traumatic freefall into potholes – assisted at speed, no doubt, by Dieppe’s fitment of the same hydraulic compression stops that featured on the Clio and, let’s face it, a quarter of a tonne less to worry about.

That weight difference – 258kg on paper – is inescapable. In real-world driving, the R hardly seems any slower than the A45.

That’s partly because of the incredible, airboat-style on-throttle whoosh from the exhaust and the scratchy, short-throw shift action, which make it considerably more visceral, and partly because the Mercedes comes nowhere near to producing its claimed 0-62mph time unless you engage Race Start – the procedural equivalent of setting a video player to record Top of the Pops in 1991. But mostly it’s down to the power-to-weight ratio, which puts the R only a modest 20bhp behind its rival.

After 20 minutes, the car’s functional prowess has me almost head over heels for it. Twenty minutes on, though, and I’m spinelessly mulling over a pre-nup as my reservations mount up like wasps in a wedding marquee.

Even though the air outside is temperate, the blower’s full force is insufficient to stop the interior from becoming unbearably stuffy on the motorway. And alongside the discomfort of clamminess is the actual discomfort of either sitting on or getting clouted by the unfastened, heavy-buckled race harness.

Above it all is the ever-present, uninsulated commotion. Not so much from the engine bay but from half a dozen vortices passing unchecked through the bodywork. It isn’t just the volume that grates. It’s the inescapable nature of it – no radio to turn up, no phone call to make, just unending white noise.

Unlike in the A45, where time passes unnoticed, you count the minutes in a Trophy-R, and after another 20 of them I decide I’d sooner lose 10kg from my own kerb weight than not re-spec the air-con and infotainment – despite the £1000 penalty that Renault chalks up for doing so. That not being an option at the following pit stop, I do the next best thing and roll into Blyton aboard the mollycoddling Mercedes half an hour later.   --

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Auto SEO Journey: Comparison: Renault Megane 275 Trophy-R VS Mercedes A45 AMG
Comparison: Renault Megane 275 Trophy-R VS Mercedes A45 AMG
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