Renault Megane Hatch. Love Or Hate It

By: Kerry Plowright

If you're in need of a small hatchback but still want a car that has style and is capable of turning heads, then perhaps you should take a close look at the Renault Megane Hatch.

It's the styling of the Renault Megane Hatch that will have you either loving it or loathing this little French gem from the very first time you lay eyes on it.

While earlier Megane's were regarded as rather dull by many, the radical new design of the 2003 model changed all that. The styling of the Megane Hatch's rear end has made this car unique and a real head turner, while still being a practical hatchback great for smaller families and running about town.

A couple of nifty features of the Megane worth mentioning include front under-floor storage, and if you're heading off to a dinner party or a picnic in the park, an air-conditioned glove box for keeping your bottle cool.

The Megane Hatch comes in a number of versions including the sporty RS Turbo which is powered by a 165 kw 2.0 litre turbo charged engine with options including leather interior, Xenon headlights, cruise control, traction control, 17" alloys and ABS brakes.

Alternatively, for around $26,000 brand new, you can drive away in the more sedate Authentique which is powered by an 83 kw 1.6 litre engine and a 5 speed gearbox. The Authentique also comes in a 98 kw 2.0 litre version. In this model, you can choose from the 6 speed manual gearbox or the 4 speed sequential shift auto. Good used cars are available, but check for poorly fitted interior parts.

If you want to take a drive through the mountains or down to the beach in real European style, check out the Dynamique Coupe Cabriolet. This will set you back around $50,000 brand new but you'll have a great looking cabriolet that includes a standard glass folding roof that will have you feeling the wind blowing through your hair with the simple press of a button. If you're looking for a one owner used car, make sure you check under the carpets for dampness before buying.

Of course, the Renault Megane Hatch is not just a stylish French hatchback, it also holds the highest five star safety rating and comes packed with safety features including front, side and curtain airbags and ABS brakes. So, if you're looking for a stylish, safe Hatch with a distinct personality and handy performance, take a look at the Renault Megane Hatch. If you don't hate it, you'll absolutely love it!

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