The 2019 Renault Mégane RS Trophy-R has taken the Nürburgring Nordschleife lap record for a production FWD car back from the Honda Civic Type R.
Though not unexpected, as the car had been spied filming at the Green Hell, it wasn’t certain whether the Trophy-R had been successful in its bid to win back the Nordschleife crown.
With a laptime of 7min 40.1sec, the Mégane RS Trophy-R topped the best from Honda’s Type R by more than three and a half seconds (7min 43.8sec for the Civic).
Renault’s vehicle development driver Laurent Hurgon set the lap time, having already done the honours in the second generation Megane RS Trophy, and the Trophy-R version of the Megane III RS.
The latest Trophy-R uses the same 220kW turbo four as the Mégane RS 300 Trophy, but weight about 130kg less and features ‘reworked’ aerodynamics and upgraded front axles.
Oh, and it's got three pedals. Renault says it will be available later this year in a limited edition run.
The Nürburgring has also changed the way lap times are recorded, now including the ‘start-finish’ straight.
In Renault’s words: “Until this year, most of the lap times and so far unofficial records were registered on the 20.6km course (start of lap time clocking at the end of the Nordschleife start/finish straight at T13, end of lap time clocking at the start/finish line at the beginning of the start/finish straight at T13).
“From 2019, the official course formalized by the Nürburgring is the 20.832km whole lap of the Nordschleife with start and end of lap time clocking at the start/finish line of the Nordschleife track. In this context, the Megane RS Trophy-R time is categorized in the compact cars class.”
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This means future efforts will likely be measured against the Trophy-R’s 7:45.389 figure recorded for the full 20.832km distance.