The Renault Megane seemingly hasn’t entirely ended production as has been reported, and will continue to be part of the local line-up into 2023.
While overseas reports (such as Autocar) say the Megane is no longer being built, Renault’s local distributor Ateco tells us this isn’t the case, at least for our market where the hot R.S is the only variant offered.
“Production has not ended for Australia and Megane should continue in limited numbers into 2023,” said the Ateco spokesperson, though they didn’t confirm how many more Meganes will be imported.
Renault Australia’s line-up will be bolstered later in 2023 with the Megane E-Tech Electric, an unrelated if visually similar electric hatchback-cum-crossover on the same CMF-EV underpinnings as the upcoming Nissan Ariya.
By calling it a Megane, Renault does appear to have left the door open for it to replace the existing combustion-powered model globally – something it’s expected to do with the similarly long-running Scenic nameplate, previewed in concept form as this year’s Scenic Vision concept.
The petrol-powered Megane is by far Renault’s lowest-volume model line in Australia, particularly following the brand’s decision to progressively cull the small car line to just R.S. Trophy manual and auto variants.
Renault only sold 123 Meganes in Australia in 2021. That was well down on the 1259 units it shifted in 2017, its first full year on sale.
80 were sold here this year to the end of June, with Renault’s next lowest-volume model line being the Kangoo (467).
The Megane was narrowly outsold by the Ford Focus (88 units), another lower-volume small car that has shed its more mainstream hatch and wagon variants and is now offered exclusively in hot hatch guise.
Though the Megane received some minor spec updates in 2021, it’s about to face an onslaught of fresh competition from the likes of the Cupra Leon, Toyota GR Corolla, updated Ford Focus ST, and a new generation of Honda Civic Type R.
The current, fourth-generation Megane was revealed in 2015 and went on sale locally late in 2016. Given Megane generations typically last around 6-8 years, it appears to be towards the end of its lifecycle.
The range has been trimmed significantly in Australia since its debut.
The wagon and sedan (above), introduced in 2017, were dropped in 2019 along with the entry-level Zen hatch, while the R.S. Sport and R.S. Cup hatchbacks were axed in 2021. That year, the R.S. Trophy received larger screens inside the cabin.
The surviving R.S. Trophy received a whopping $6100 price hike in March 2022 for no extra equipment, followed by a $2210 increase in July. It now starts at $62,300 before on-roads.
Though it looks similar, the upcoming Megane E-Tech Electric measures 4199mm long and 1768-1783mm wide with a 2685mm wheelbase.
That makes it 165mm shorter in length and up to 107mm slimmer than the Megane R.S. Trophy hatch albeit on a 15mm longer wheelbase.
Renault hasn’t yet to confirm which variants will be offered in Australia, but in Europe it’ll be available with a choice of 40kWh and 60kWh batteries.
The former has a projected driving range of 300km, while the latter should be good for around 470km. There’s a choice of two front-mounted electric motors, one with 96kW of power and 250Nm of torque and one with 165kW and 300Nm.
The Megane E-Tech Electric is also relatively lightweight at around 1600kg depending on variant – making it around 400kg lighter than a Tesla Model Y.