RENAULT is a company that loves a special edition and the latest Megane special edition adheres to the well-worn formula.
Thing is, it’s a well-worn formula because it works. Special editions do increase sales, even if it’s a special edition that wears a spectacularly unimaginative name like this Megane Limited.
The Limited version of the Megane is offered in Hatch, Sport Tourer and Coupe variants and there’s a reasonably wide choice of engines.
You get to choose between two petrol and a pair of diesel powerplants, opening with the 1.6 VVT 110 and stepping up to the 1.2 ENERGY TCe 115 if you want something that drinks from the green pump.
Go diesel and you’re looking at either a dCi 110 unit or an ENERGY 1.6 dCi 130.
There’s not a whole lot to choose between the two petrol units in terms of pace, the 1.6-litre actually being a little quicker to 62mph despite its lower power output.
This third generation Megane moved the game on in terms of refinement, but get underneath the car and you’ll realise that many of the underpinnings are quite similar to those of the second generation car.
Anyone who has driven one will tell you this is no bad thing.
The Megane hatch retains its coupe-like stance, thanks particularly to its short front and rear overhangs, a long 2.64m wheelbase, a steeply-raked roofline and a wide track. It certainly exudes a feeling of much higher quality than its predecessor, with thin cut lines between the different body panels.
Great care has also gone into the quality and fit and finish of the materials used and there are nice touches like the soft-touch finish on the dashboard cowling that’s resistant to daily use and the ageing effects of sunlight or the way that the windscreen wipers are aesthetically concealed beneath the bonnet line.
If you had your heart set on a Megane Dynamique TomTom and were toying with the idea of the panoramic glass sunroof, then the Limited makes all kinds of sense.
The Megane is a solid performer, and probably deserves more play than it gets. Real world figures ought to convince buyers that the ghost of French car flakiness has been laid to rest. Despite this, it plays a supporting role in a market sector where Renault really needs a big-time player. As good as it is, the Megane needs more than this Limited model to jump start its revival.