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Serious Toy Not For Boys

As you traverse about your merry way in the ever expanding cyber universe you’re bound to come across the following “1980s – the Golden Era of Racing”. The thing is I have been stating and reinstating the matter for a wee bit longer, and I have had many concurring nods and shrugs when I present my case with our fancy French hot hatch being one among the numerous Exhibits. Renault’s ‘racy’ façade, portrayed to such fabulous aesthetical persona by this superlative Megane were in its glorious unhindered heyday back then, as were other mighty makes with their raw and pure competitive spirits being allowed plenty of leeway to run amok, only kept in check by some vaguely prescribed rulings inasmuch.


As raw and as pure as the mighty race machines of those bygone era the stage where they’d be in their hardiest element – the racetracks themselves were equally raw, meaning ‘out of your mind’ dangerous. Back then Le Mans’ iconic Mulsanne straight went for 4 full miles with nary a chicane to disrupt the pedal to the metal right feet action (in XS of 400 km/h was achieved by yet another French Group C racer). In fact this is all about the ‘French Connection’ right here ennit? What more with the word ‘chicane’ being French also.


Just as well isn’t it that as much a distinction as the (supposed snob) French may be as a people, they apparently have their priorities well and truly sorted out it seems. Going fast in itself mightn’t be a national French pastime I’d reckon seeing as apart from the automobile with their 4 mile 400 km/h straight sauntering blast and what have you, the newest and most advanced variant of their renowned TGV trains nicked past 500 km/h without a drop of coffee spilt, and without any perceivable butt-shifting discomfort on the part of the guests.


Now surely those exceptionally dressed guests of the TGV’s record breaking run weren’t exactly ‘down’ with getting their automobiles all modded up for Speed sake (geddit?) but rest easy fellas because the French as we’ve established have not only redefined speed but they’ve gone on to make it part of their DNA, their genes, even to their sub-atomic particles et al. Mention speed to RenaultSport – the factory go-faster department and they’d regale you with their hugely successful motorsport program, which over its forty years history have garnered over twelve F1 Championships wins as engine manufacturer having brought the likes of Nigel Mansell, Damon Hill, Michael Schumacher, Alain Prost, Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel and Jacques Villeneuve (but sadly not the one the only Ayrton Senna) their world titles.


All of the above background narrative is essential as per the inner-workings of this purpose built track only Megane right here since prior to the massive modifications done by Penang-based Sim Summer Workshop – a pretty well recognized performance modifier in the middle of the happening Penang tuning scene, with additional chip tuning work from ATM Performance Malaysia, the Megane RS250 is already acknowledged as among the finest drivers hatch ever made. Indeed with the illustrious pedigree of RenaultSport in the picture such acknowledgments aren’t exactly news, more to the point it is demanded.

As for the owner’s own demands when he made the decision to built a track toy for him to run riot in, the raw no-compromise Megane RS250 had but one objective: blitzing far fancier costlier sexier (supposedly) cars to dust, and inasmuch making Sepang its spiritual home slash shrine. Before even one nut was undone he’d knew what he wants from his Mega Megane; clearly emphasizing the French uber hatch as an entire package; the ultimate track toy. As such it wasn’t about huge insane output at all, rather harnessing tractable horsepower and torque and synergizing with its superlative dynamics.


But still having put the 2 liter turbo through an intense reworking program which entailed major beefing up of the internals – Wossner forged pistons, PEC Forged “I-Beam” Con Rods, KTEC lightened flywheel, major upgrades to the cooling systems therein (Forge Motorsport radiator and a cutting edge custom programmable water spraying cooling kit running on water temp sensor), turbo replacement (TD04 Hybrid), upgraded intakes, ignition, injectors, exhausts along with compulsory upgrades as per the ancillaries et al; the dyno figures of 330hp at the wheel and thumping 495Nm torque both with 1.5 bar, are to put it mildly pretty impressive.


More impressive mods art still to be perused here fellas; for that crucial track run a CAE Ultra short shifter is installed, with aftermarket gearbox mounting provided by KTEC along with hardened engine top mount as well. By the way KTEC also provides the flywheel and the 630cc injectors. Now we come to this Megane’s trump card – its handling. For starters the stock dampers were replaced by the fabulous Nitron R3, with aftermarket bushings by Powerflex & Superpro, with Superpro front & rear anti-roll bar. This Megane RS250’s stopping power, which comes fully equipped with custom single front rear brake bias kit, is improved on by a 997 Cup Car 6-Pot Brembo BBK with Endless CCRG brake pads, and Ferrodo pads matted to the rear.


Wheels set-up which is specifically for the track remember is a set of Hankook Semi-slicks wrapped neatly around the cool RAYS Engineering CE28 18 inch wheels. Now upon first impression you’d gather the bodywork with its competition style graphics and decals is all bespoke and custom yes? But look closely guys and you’d see that it is entirely stock. The stripped down cockpit though is anything but, with that FIA-approved 6 point roll cage bolted on, Blitz race seats with Schroth Racing harness, Oreca racing steering wheel with custom boss kit and FIA-approved quick release kit, and a multiple gauge galore both analog and digital – Defi, GFB, plus an electronic air fan controller adding that fighter pilot feel to the interior.

Now just put into perspective that all of the above mods were chosen one singular objective – making the Megane the Ultimate track car. And another noteworthy detail right here that should put the superlative capability of this incredible Megane Nova RS on an entirely new level is that the rarefied availability of aftermarket products for the Megane.

One look at its fearsome presence and hearing one shriek of its thumping engine note, and you’d surely see that the owner and the speed merchants of Sim Summer Workshop plus ATM Performance succeeded in spades.

CAR: Renault Megane RS250

ENGINE MODIFICATIONS: Forged internal with Wossner Pistons & PEC Forged “I-Beam” Con-Rod; Cylinder Head fully ported, port & polished match openings to manifolds openings, custom cold air intake with K&N open pod filter, custom stainless steel intercooler piping w/ EVO 9 Intercooler, custom oil catch can w/ 2 breather pipes. Braille lightweight racing battery, HKS BOV, Hybrid TD04 turbo, custom harden engine top mounting; Custom modified factory coil pack system to plug cable system w/ aftermarket MSD ignition booster for each spark plug, aftermarket KTEC gearbox mounting & custom harden engine top mounting, KTEC lightened flywheel, KTEC 630cc injectors, GFB boost controller (w/ shift-lights etc), Forge Motorsports radiator, 13 row oil cooler, Custom 3-inch Straight pipe exhaust w/ single bullet, custom programmable water spraying cooling kit running on water temp sensor, water methanol injection kit.

TRANSMISSION: Aftermarket KTEC gearbox mounting and custom harden engine top mounting, CAE ultra short shift kit

INTERIOR: Oreca racing steering wheel w/ custom boss kit and FIA-approved quick release kit, S & D FIA-approved powder coated 6 points bolt on roll cage, Schroth White Racing Harness, Defi gauges: oil temperature, water temperature, oil pressure, Innovate Motorsports Air Fuel Ratio gauge, GFB G-Force boost controller, electronic fan controller.

HANDLING/SUSPENSION: Nitron R3 custom, Superpro & Powerflex bushes; Superpro front & rear anti-roll bar.

BRAKES: 997 Cup Car 6-Pot Brembo BBK w/ Endless CCRG brake pads [Front]; OEM rear set-up w/ Ferrodo pads; Car comes fully equipped with custom single front rear brake bias kit.

WHEELS & TIRES: RAYS Engineering CE28 18 inch; Hankook Semi-slicks

WORKSHOP: Sim Summer Workshop , Penang.

TUNER: ATM Performance Malaysia

OUTPUTS: 330whp and 495nm torque@1.5bar (Low boost setting for track)