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For petrolheads, the “Megane” name conjures images of a performance-enhanced family hatchback-coupe thanks to the RS treatment by the RenaultSport crew. The upcoming RS version of the fourth-generation Renault Megane will be based on the five-door hatchback like the Clio, as there is no two-door coupe Megane in the fourth-generation line-up.

The upcoming Megane RS is expected to attain an output of at least 300 hp from its 2.0 litre, turbocharged four-cylinder engine, while both manual and dual-clutch automatic transmissions will be available for the car, according to Renault Sport boss Patrice Ratti. It was also mentioned that the upcoming RS will feature all-wheel-drive and four-wheel steering, ingredients that should help the RS sub-grand stay on par with the recent Ford Focus RS.

Up front, the test mule’s regular GT body should make way for larger air intakes when the RS approaches its launch date. Around the back, the rear bumper also receives modifications to accommodate RS-specific equipment, namely the centrally-mounted exhaust exits rather than the standard car’s exhaust, which is offset to the side.

Visible through the wheels are a set of larger, Brembo performance brakes as expected for an RS model, while the wheels themselves reside in what appears to be wheel arches that have been cut to make space for the larger wheel and tyre combination.

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The performance-oriented Megane variant can be expected to make its debut at the Geneva Motor Show next year in March, with deliveries potentially at the end of 2017 or from 2018.

The RS-fettled Megane has been a significant car for the French manufacturer, with a cult following in Malaysia too; 10 units out of a 250-unit global production run of the range-topping Trophy-R variant were allocated for Malaysia, and all were promptly sold out.

GALLERY: The 3rd-generation Renault Megane RS Trophy-R