It seems like quite some time since Honda was able to set a lap record of 7 minutes 43 seconds around the Nurburgring with its larger-than-life Civic Type R. With competition coming from Volkswagen and Renault, it was only a matter of time since the record would be beaten once more. I’ll be honest, I was expecting the Golf TCR to take the mantle of beating the Type R, but it’s the car from France that has taken the initiative, thanks to Laurent Hurgon.
(French) Fancy that
I’ll be honest, I was a bit surprised when I read the news a few moments ago. You see, I’ve driven the Megane RS, and whilst there was nothing wrong with it, the Civic Type R still felt a league above it. The Type R was like a Champion’s League final victory, whereas the Megane felt more like the FA Cup. Given the choice, I’d take the Type R every day, even though I think the Megane looks better on the outside and makes a nicer noise.
This isn’t just any Megane RS, though
That’s right, this is a Trophy-R, which is yet to go on sale, but will be a limited model for those lucky enough to get their hands on it. When it comes to power, the Trophy-R has the same four cylinder 1.8 litre turbo petrol, which offers 300hp, so it hasn’t got any more brawn. It does, however, have more brains to it.
Believe it or not, Renault has somehow managed to shed a whopping 130kg, although the French brand has not stated how it managed such a feat. On top of this, the Trophy-R also has improved aerodynamics and “more radical” development of the chassis for improved handling. This is great for the track, but I bet it won’t be as compliant as the Civic Type R on the road. Mind you, for some that simply won’t matter.