designed for pleasure

Mabuyane Kekana

Mabuyane Kekana

Before you dismiss Renaults as problematic and unreliable, these are perceptions, and is not a fact according to Renault South Africa.

The French marque's determination to fight negative perceptions was made clear when they launched the new Renault Megane GT and Megane Coupe- Cabriolet. The two vehicles were launched alongside each other in KwaZulu-Natal last week.

The new Megane GT and Coupe-Cabriolet were introduced to help strengthen the embattled car maker.

The Megane Coupe-Cabriolet 2,0T is positioned as an aspirational two-door with four seats that offer the combined attractions of a sleek hardtop coupe and an exhilarating, wind-in-the-hair cabriolet.

Based on the styling of the Megane 2, the Coupe-Cabriolet has a unique shape, sculpted to suit its wind-cheating.

Opening and closing the roof is as simple as pushing a button, which activates the electro-hydraulic mechanism. The car is transformed from coupe to cabriolet in a mere 22 seconds.

Features unique to the Megane Coupe-Cabriolet include the one-touch opening function for the four, electrically operated windows, and the pop-up safety hoops behind the rear seat.

The Megane CC provides four proper seats and a surprising amount of interior space. The slope of the windscreen acknowledges the need for maximum front headroom, while rear accommodation is superb in terms of headroom, knee clearance, seating width and access.

Under the bonnet of the Megane CC lies a 16-valve turbocharged engine which delivers a power output of 120 kW at 5000rpm and maximum torque of 270Nm at 3250 rpm.

On the other hand, the new Megane 2,0 GT joins the Megane hatchback range as a particularly potent replacement for the outgoing five-door Megane 2,0 Dynamique. Also based on the five-door hatchback, the GT is powered by a 2,0 turbocharged engine producing 120kW.

However, unlike Renault's even sportier RS and hardcore R26 models, the GT focuses on everyday driving pleasure, with a superior mix of tractability, response and cruising capability.

The GT is fun to drive, but still user-friendly, comfortable and versatile.

The interior continues with the hatchback's unmistakeably sporty theme, with sculpted, supportive bucket seats and a thick-rimmed, leather-covered steering wheel featuring the GT logo. An aerodynamic package consisting of a bumper with an integrated, lower front air dam, extended sills and a rear spoiler endow the hatchback. The GT sells for R222000 and the CC is priced at R299500.