The all-new Mégane R.S. Trophy-R certainly burst onto the Australian market with a bang in early November – Renault’s hottest ever hatch made its Down Under debut with a record-breaking lap at its launch press day at Bend Motorsport Park in South Australia.
The Trophy-R, driven by Renault-backed Garry Rogers Motorsport TCR Australia driver James Moffat, broke the FWD production car lap record with a time of 2:14.316 for the 7.77 km circuit.
What made the record even more incredible was that it wasn’t even a planned attempt. The press day was held under clear blue skies at Australia’s premier multi-purpose motorsport facility – and the near perfect conditions prompted a last-minute decision to try for the record. With just 15 minutes to prepare for action, Moffatt and the R.S. Trophy-R took to the track and recorded their one-lap flier to give the media corps already in attendance an unexpected exclusive.
Equally as impressive was the fact the Trophy-R used was not the Record Breaking special edition equipped with carbon wheels and carbon ceramic brakes, and there was no time to make specific set-up adjustments to the car’s Öhlins shock-absorbers. Faced with similar conditions and the chance to make those tweaks, an even faster lap time is on the cards in the future.
“The Megane RS Trophy-R was first of all a great fun car to drive, and I was very impressed with not only the engine performance, but the braking and cornering performance. I really have nothing but good things to say about it, it was just so much fun,” Moffat said after landing the new record time.
The R.S. Trophy-R has set the motoring world alight since its launch in 2019 and has now broken four different records on three different continents. In Spring, it recorded 07:40.100 on the 20.6 km Nordschleife circuit at the Nürburgring while also clocking up a reference time of 07:45.389 on the official full lap. It then took the lap record at Belgium’s iconic Spa-Francorchamps circuit with 2:48.338 ahead of the circuit’s prestigious 24 Hours of Spa race.
Following the Bend lap record, it also went on to conquer Japan’s Suzuka circuit, recording a new absolute official record and a reference time of 2:25.454 for a production car on the 5.8-km-long circuit.
Limited to 500 units worldwide, Australian delivery of Renault Sport’s newest icon in begins early in 2020.