In the middle of the year I test drove the Renault Megane hatchback range and was left rapt by the experience.
Rounding off 2017 are the wagon versions of the Megane - to cart around Chrissie presents in - which turned out to be equally as impressive.
In the spotlight were the GT and GT-Line boasting the same 1.6L (151kW/280Nm) and 1.2L (97kW/205Nm) turbo petrol engines as in the hatch, coupled with a seven-speed sports automatic transmission with dual clutch.
Performance in each is as it was in the hatch – outstanding.
And this is taking into account the increase in size for the wagon; in fact if you don’t look behind you’d swear you were still in the hatchback.
The feel of the drive is dynamic and sporty making it a breeze to manoeuvre around anything through the direct steering while taking in the bumps well.
While the smaller of the two powerplants is more than adequate for the average driver and does a nice job of climbing hills and overtaking, the 1.6L GT just has that little bit extra.
There can be such a thing as too much power in an instance and the GT tends to hold the gears at higher revs so you’ll need to give it more space or resort to the long paddle shifters.
Under hard acceleration it can get a bit untamed if you don’t keep the wheel under control.
The engine note is also matched to suit the sportiness with a nice and meaty growl.
Fuel usage came out at between 8.3-9.5L/100km which is better than it seemed as I watched the fuel gauge rapidly deplete and I profess I was making the most of the available grunt.
Again the interior is identical to the hatchback with great interior styling, Renault’s R-Link vertical touchscreen interface and racing style bucket seats – blue trim in the GT.
The heated seats are dressed in the ‘felty’ Alcantara and (as I’ve previously mentioned) well-bolstered which keeps you in position but sometime gets in the way of movement.
The Megane cabin is refined, sporty and the ambient lighting adds that extra touch.
This lighting changes colour to match the selected drive mode ie. Red =Sport.
Of course as a station wagon there is awesome boot space with a 510L capacity that can be sectioned off with a cargo blind.
It comes with two removable floor panels that aren’t connected but give it more versatility.
For bigger items, rear seats can be easily let down with a spring loaded one-touch release system in the boot.
There are no powered seats but almost every other default feature is fitted as standard such as sat-nav, dual climate control, a sunroof, park brake, speed limiter, adaptive cruise control and driver assistance tech - blind spot monitoring, active braking, lane departure, distance warning and park assist.
I love a good wagon (shame their popularity is waning) though the Renault Megane is definitely doing it justice in helping it prove its worth against the favoured SUV.
NUTS and BOLTS - 2018 Renault Megane GT & GT-Line Wagon
- Engine: 1.6L turbo petrol producing 151kW/280Nm
or 1.2L turbo petrol producing 97kW/205Nm
- Transmission: Seven-speed sports auto dual clutch
- Warranty: 5 Years
- Safety: Not yet tested
- Origin: Spain
- Price: From $33,990