TC Euro Cars has launched the updated version of the Megane RS 250 Cup, one of yours truly’s personal favourites. Called the Renault Megane RS 265 Cup, the new car looks largely similar to the original except for a few details, but boasts more power and more torque.
If you’re wondering, the few details include headlamps with a “smoked” look, more prominent DRLs (six LEDs compared to three), and 18-inch “Tibor” wheels in matte black. The latter sports curved spokes and an RS logo, quite different from the diamond-badged star-spoke wheels of the RS 250.
Inside, it’s a familiar environment save for the addition of gloss black trim (AC vent surrounds, steering spoke, door grips, centre console), carbon-effect finish for the door cards and a shiny top for the gear knob. The yellow face of the rev counter is out, replaced by a grey background.
Also, the edges of the fabric Recaro bucket seats are now in leather, making it more resistant to wear. The audio head unit is a newer item that integrates USB and AUX-in.
On to more substantial stuff. The familiar 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine now makes 265 hp and 360 Nm, which is 15 hp and 20 Nm up on the RS 250. Peak torque is also available across a broader rev-range, from 3,000 to 5,000 rpm, as opposed to the previous fixed point of 3,000 rpm.
To achieve this, Renault Sport upped turbo pressure by 0.2 bar to 2.5 bar, while the air intake design has been revised to take the higher pressure and higher running temperatures into account. Specific power is now 132.5 hp/litre, up from 125.
Performance figures have been bumped up in the process – the 0-100 km/h time is shaved by a tenth to make 6.0 seconds flat, while top speed is 250 km/h. As is usually the case with upgrades like this, the extra drivability is not reflected in the bare figures.
Renault is keen to remind us that the Megane RS 265 Cup is the fastest front-wheel drive car that has ever lapped the Nurburgring at 8:07.97. Closer to home, the 265 betters the RS 250’s Sepang lap time by two seconds – 2:41 vs 2:43 – driven by experienced racer Denis Lian. Stock car, stock tyres.
“Like the Megane RS 250, the way the 265 chassis rotates feels like a RWD, but in a more progressive fashion. It helps you turn into bends quicker and get on the power earlier. Overall the car just felt more resolved,” Lian said via video.
Note that the full 265 hp/360 Nm is available in Sport mode and ESP Off modes. In the former, ESP and ASR are still active, although they intervene at a later point and allow some slide. In ESP On mode, one gets to use 250 hp/340 Nm. In other words, the 265 is a 250 until you enter Sport mode.
Goodies like the mechanical limited slip differential (LSD), Renault Sport’s “Perfohub” independent steering axis front suspension and RS Monitor are carried over.
The black car you see in the pics is the limited edition Megane RS Red Bull Racing RB7. Painted in Etoile Black with yellow accents and sporting RBR stickers and a chequered flag design roof, only five examples have been brought in.
TC Euro Cars have gone the extra mile by getting F1 triple world champion Sebastian Vettel to sign a plaque for the five Malaysian-bound cars. At the launch, we heard that four of the five cars have already been accounted for.
The Megane RS 265 Cup is priced at RM234,526.80 OTR without insurance, which is just around RM5,000 more than RS 250’s November 2010 launch price. If you’re interested in the last unit of the RB7, it’s going for RM243,292.80 OTR without insurance.
At the launch event yesterday evening, TC Euro Cars also announced the 2013 RS Track Day dates, and the RS Collectif Owners Club was officially launched. RS Collectif membership is open to all Renault Sport owners regardless of make and model.
Click here to read our first review of the Megane RS 250 Cup, done back in October 2010. Since then, we’ve tried the same yellow car on track and in “mundane mode” as a daily driver. We hope to sample this one in the near future, of course, so stay tuned.