Those wily Frenchmen have only gone and done it again. Renault have taken their new Megane 265 Trophy to the Nurburgring and smashed the lap record for production front-wheel drive cars.
The thing is, the record was their own – the old-shape Megane R26.R snatched the record in June 2008 when it lapped the Nordschleife in 8:17. At that time Renaultsport were battling with Ford’s Focus RS for supremacy in the hot hatch market, and their lightweight Megane R26.R managed to beat the more powerful but lardy Focus RS.
Not a bunch to rest on their laurels, the Renaultsport team have been working hard on the new model Megane 250. While they have worked some of their magic to increase the power of the Megane up to 265bhp in the Trophy, they’ve not gone as far as they did with the R26.R.
They obviously felt confident that the extra power and sticky Bridgestone RE050A tyres would be enough to beat the R26.R’s time, and with some careful chassis tweaking they were able to do just that.
Driver Laurent Hurgon took to the Nordschleife and put together a fantastic lap, beating the previous record by almost nine seconds. The final lap time was 8:07.98, a feat that puts some considerably more powerful cars to shame.
To get an idea of how hard he was trying, watch the full lap below. Laurent Hurgon clearly knows the circuit well and knows exactly how hard to push the Bridgestone’s as he slides through the corners with the tyres squealing away on the edge of adhesion. Great stuff.