The multi-circuit record holding Renault Megane RS275 Trophy-R has lapped Melbourne’s Albert Park Formula One circuit in 2:23.64 to become the first car of its kind to set a lap record of the Grand Prix track.
Hustling the track-focused street-legal two-seat Renault Megane RS275 Trophy-R around the 5.3-kilometre street circuit – at an average speed of 133km/h – was the 20-year-old team mate of Australia’s Infiniti Red Bull Racing driver Daniel Ricciardo.
“It was a good car, nice to drive,” said Russian-born Daniil Kvyat.
“It is made for proper racing driving.”
Although the lap time is around one minute shy of Michael Schumacher’s 1:24.125 outright record set back in 2004 in his old Ferrari F1 car, the 201kW/360Nm turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder Megane RS275 Trophy-R can be had from $61,990 – albeit with local numbers limited to 50 cars.
Marking the 20th year of Formula One in Melbourne, this weekend’s 2015 Australian Grand Prix culminates with Sunday’s main race starting at 16:00 local time.
Despite a range of road cars notching up laps of the Albert Park GP circuit over the years, Renault maintains this is the first time that a commercially available production vehicle under or up to 2.0-litres has set a timed lap of the much-loved track.