Feature

Used test – sporty coupes: Audi TT vs Renault Sport Megane vs Subaru BRZ vs Toyota GT86

With these fast, fun coupΓ©s now going for less than Β£15,000, buying something sporty for summer is a very tempting proposition

Words ByWhat Car? team

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Audi TT, Renault Sport Megane, Subaru BRZ and Toyota GT86

Our Verdict

Deciding which is best between the Subaru and Toyota is tricky, because each has its own strengths. The BRZ’s superior agility and composure make it the more desirable driver’s car, and as driver appeal is one of the main reasons for choosing one of these cars, that’s a very strong argument in its favour.

The problem is that so few BRZs were sold relative to the GT86 that it’s hard to find one. You might have to settle for a car with higher mileage than you’d like, or travel for many miles to find your perfect example. For that reason, we have to give the nod to the Toyota, even though the Subaru is probably the one we’d prefer to be behind the wheel of.

Having said that, the difference between the two is marginal – so slim, in fact, that you probably wouldn’t notice unless you were driving them hard. What you would enjoy every day, however, is the Toyota’s greater comfort.

Throw in the fact that the GT86 came with a five-year warranty from new – meaning even a three-year-old example will still have two years left to run, where the warranty will have expired on a BRZ – and the Toyota pips its sibling to the post

In the final reckoning, though, both are blasted away by the vast extra reserves of power and capability to which both the Renault MΓ©gane RS 265 Cup and Audi TT can lay claim.

The MΓ©gane, quite simply, is the most involving hot hatch of its generation. Its sensational handling, sharp steering and barnstorming engine make every journey a joy. Yet it’s also a practical four-seater with a smart, well-equipped interior and lots of room for luggage.

The news isn’t all good, however. The MΓ©gane is the most expensive car here to run, with high fuel consumption, expensive servicing costs and that wince-inducing timing belt change required every five years. What’s more, with prices holding up well, it’s actually not that cheap to buy in comparison with the TT.

For that reason, the Audi wins our test, but there is a fairly large caveat: only a post-2011 manual example, as tested here, is worth considering over the Renault; anything else raises reliability concerns that would place it behind the French car.

But get a good TT in our tested spec, and it’s the best car here. It has a gorgeous interior and is both nimble and fast, while its low fuel consumption and tax and reasonable servicing costs will cost you less than all its rivals day-to-day.

Read our review of the latest Audi TT

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1st – Audi TT

For Stunning performance; classy dashboard; low running costs

Against Slow steering; useless rear seats; reliability question marks

Verdict A hugely desirable and capable sports coupΓ©, and the best all-rounder here

Rated 5 out of 5

Read the full used Audi TT review

Find a used Audi TT for sale in the What Car? Classifieds


*2nd – Renault MΓ©gane RS

For Precise handling; awesome acceleration; space for four

Against Worst fuel consumption; expensive to run and, for a Renault, to buy

Verdict

Rated 5 out of 5

Read the full used Renault MΓ©gane RS review

Find a used Renault Sport MΓ©gane for sale in the What Car? Classifieds


3rd – Toyota GT86

For Enjoyable to drive; good standard kit; cheap to buy; five-year warranty

Against Noisy engine; cheap inside; BRZ handles better

Verdict Not as agile as the BRZ, but more comfortable, and has a better warranty

Rated 3 out of 5

Read the full used Toyota GT86 review

Find a used Toyota GT86 for sale in the What Car? Classifieds


4th – Subaru BRZ

For Sharp handling; cheap to buy; plenty of kit

Against Low-rent plastics; not that fast; less comfortable than GT86

Verdict Plenty of flaws, but you’ll still love it on a twisty road

Rated 3 out of 5

Read the full used Subaru BRZ review

Find a used Subaru BRZ for sale in the What Car? Classifieds


Also consider:


Specifications: Audi TT 2.0 TFSI 211 Sport

Engine size 2.0-litre petrol

List price when new Β£27,145

Price today Β£13,500

Power 208bhp

Torque 258lb ft

0-60mph 6.0sec

Top speed 147mph

Fuel economy 42.8mpg (Official average)

CO2 emissions 154g/km


Specifications: Renault MΓ©gane RS 265 Cup

Engine size 2.0-litre petrol

List price when new Β£24,840

Price today Β£13,000

Power 261bhp

Torque 266lb ft

0-60mph 6.3sec

Top speed 146mph

Fuel economy 34.4mpg (Official average)

CO2 emissions 190g/km


Specifications: Subaru BRZ SE

Engine size 2.0-litre petrol

List price when new Β£24,995

Price today Β£12,500

Power 197bhp

Torque 151lb ft

0-60mph 7.5sec

Top speed 135mph

Fuel economy 36.2mpg (Official average)

CO2 emissions 181g/km


Specifications: Toyota GT86

Engine size 2.0-litre petrol

List price when new Β£24,995

Price today Β£12,500

Power 197bhp

Torque 151lb ft

0-60mph 7.5sec

Top speed 135mph

Fuel economy 36.2mpg (Official average)

CO2 emissions 181g/km

Price today is based on a 2012 model with average mileage and full service history, correct at time of writing

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