This tuned Renault Megane might not look like much from the outside, but given the right circumstances, it’s able to run with the best. Its 2.0-liter motor makes 370 horsepower, and its peak torque is accessible from 3,000-5,500 rpm, which helps it run with a 997.2 GT3 RS.
The grey car from the Fatherland has an power advantage—no question about that—but with the way the Renault puts its power to the pavement with a strong differential, it’s even-steven at the corner exit. With KW Suspension and Dunlop Direzzas at each corner, the Megane can keep its Gallic nose right on the Porsche’s bumper in the most technical sections.
Points for negotiating traffic go to the Porsche’s driver, who’s quite macho when it comes to getting around people on a sightseeing excursion. Having the extra power certainly helps here, but a nonstop train of slower drivers, a crashed car, and a tow truck allow the Megane’s driver to keep in touch.
So do quick thinking and quick hands. When an obscured car is revealed at an inconvenient moment (4:50), the Renault’s driver doesn’t panic. Instead, he throws his car in early, gets the rear slightly unstuck, catches the bobble, and is back on the throttle with nothing lost. Though he doesn’t overreact, that surprising situation might’ve led to a collision with a less experienced driver. He kept his eyes up, avoided target fixation, and pointed the car where he had to go.
Because of the lower level of torque and wonderful traction, the Megane can turn in a little earlier than the 911 and still carry more mid-corner speed. At times, the Porsche gets a slightly stronger direction change, especially through switchbacks, and gains a slight edge, but there’s never a marked advantage with either party. With a dogfight of that caliber, you’d hope the two met for a celebratory drink afterwards, and exchanged some well-deserved laughter.