Renault Sport has a pretty fine back catalogue of delightful hot hatchbacks, and the Renault Mégane Renault Sport 275 certainly stands tall in this hall of fame.
This is a car for the serious enthusiast; one who delights in the type of well-sorted handling that breathes life into any cross-country dash. You need to be dedicated, though, because it also comes with a firm ride.
If that’s a trait you can accept, it doubles as decent everyday transport. Despite Renault calling it a coupé, it’s really just the three-door hatchback version of the standard Mégane. This means there’s space for four adults and a reasonably big boot.
It’s powered by a tuned 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine that puts out 271bhp and 266lb ft of torque, which gives it serious pace – 0-62mph in 5.8 seconds and 158mph. There are cars that offer the same sort of focused handling and go even quicker – the Focus RS and the Honda Civic Type R to name just two – but they are considerably more expensive.
The entry-level is the 275 Cup-S, which comes with fewer luxuries and more focused mechanicals, such as stiffer suspension. The other option is the Nav 275, which as the name suggests counts sat-nav among its upgrades.