The facelifted Renault Megane RS 265 Cup made its first appearance in Malaysia last night, at the launch of the Malaysia Super GT racing event. Before we go any further, this is not a market launch of the hot hatch – it’s just been unveiled as the official car for Malaysia Super GT.
Malaysia Super GT is billed as the country’s first “corporate motorsports event,” and bears no relation to Japan’s Super GT series. Organised and managed by Formula IRIS Racing, a wholly-owned subsidiary of IRIS Corporation (the developer and manufacturer of MyKad), the motorsport competition, planned to kick off in 2015, is open to all Malaysian-registered corporations.
A total of 24 corporate teams, made up of their respective employees, will compete over five race weekends at the Sepang circuit, comprising sprint, endurance and one-make events.
The feature event, being the Corporate race, offers a cumulative cash prize of RM500,000. So far, six corporations have signed up: IRIS themselves, TC Euro Cars, AirAsia, accounting firm Baker Tilly, Orchid Inn and environmental solutions provider Cypark.
The 24 teams will be racing identical Megane RS 265 Cups, having undergone motorsport training to enable them to take on roles such as drivers, mechanics, technicians or pit crew.
The idea is to use motorsports as a base to develop corporate team spirit and camaraderie, as well as to create exposure for the companies, according to Formula IRIS Racing MD Datuk Vincent Leong. The cost for all this? A cool RM390,000, we’re told, and that includes the car, training and competition fees.
As you can see from the pictures, the facelifted Megane RS 265 Cup here has been quite thoroughly stripped out and race-prepped. There’s a roll cage, fire extinguisher and a racing seat with harness – but we understand race specifications and regulations have yet to be finalised, so the cars could be specced differently from what you see here, come 2015.
The big diamond face brings the hot Megane in line with the current Clio, Captur and Koleos, but there are no mechanical changes. Beneath that reshaped bonnet sits the same 2.0 litre four-cylinder turbo that feeds 265 hp and 360 Nm of twist to the front wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox. The standard car does the century sprint in six seconds before hitting a 250 km/h top speed; with all the calories shed, these racers should do even better.
So no, you can’t buy a Megane RS 265 facelift yet (not unless you do it here through a registered company, that is!) but Renault Malaysia is contemplating introducing the model to the public sometime in the future.