R26 Megane too tame for you? Renault might just have the fix for your hot hatch addiction with its R26 R model.
Although the name sounds rather tame, with only an R added, the package is uncompromisingly performance orientated.
Due to be launched at the London Motor Show (23 July - 3 August), details concerning the hottest of French hot hatches are available, and they make for some spirited reading.
Carbon fibre diet, lean athlete
Although the R26 R is set to be powered by the same 169kW 2-litre, in-line four cylinder turbomotor as the standard R26, the devil truly is in the technical details.
The R car is a whole 125 kg trimmer than the R26, weighing in at only 1 235 kg.
Trimming down the already lithe R26 by 125 kg is not the work of a moment either; and subsequently there are some pretty exotic materials present to ensure the R is as minimalist a street racer as possible.
Clambering inside - mind your step across the roll cage though - and you'll find yourself settling into carbon fibre seats. The bonnet is carbon fibre too, and the exhaust titanium.
All in all if you're an investor in precious metals or have a serious automotive plastic fetish you'll love the new exotic material trim blend.
Hottest hatch of all
If you're slightly mad - and to own any Renault hot hatch you automatically qualify - you can have factory fitted semi-slicks, which should be quite entertaining to drive home on during a Highveld thunderstorm.
Despite the mad styling, with standard red 18-inch mags no less, the essential ingredients which make the standard R26 such a formidable hot hatch have should be keenly enhanced by the stripped out R package.
Claims are already being made of a sub six-second 0-100km/h sprint time, and with the optional suspension package synergising with the awesomely sorted R26 chassis and limited-slip front differential the R26 R might go down in history as the most resolved hot hatch of all.
Production is set to start in Dieppe, France, during November this year through to March 2009 with very limited numbers coming to market.