In a world where hot hatches are frequently adorned with massive wings, ugly arch extensions, carbonfibre splitters, huge vents and multiple exhausts, it’s a pleasant change to have a subtle and pretty hatchback like the new Mégane RS. Its wider arches blend into the bodywork expertly – even the rear arches that have to emerge suddenly from behind the rear doors look correct and proper.
Its lack of wing gives it a conventional but neat silhouette, while the single exhaust pipe integrated into the rear diffuser strikes the right balance between subtlety and aggression.
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The huge Renault badge on the front of the Mégane, as well as its big wheels, have the potential to make it look like some strange caricature, but there’s no doubt that Renault Sport’s latest hot hatch is a fine-looking car.
In Trophy-R trim the carbon wheels, bonnet and sticker package do take away much of the standard car’s subtlety, so it’s hard to call it handsome – but for those in the know, as with previous Trophy-Rs and R26.Rs, it could be only one thing. The basic shape is still great, too, and there’s a lot to be said for seeing the tops of the tyres tucked slightly further under each arch thanks to the extra camber of the Trophy-R.