Standard model here in Q3, Trophy coming in 2019
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The hotly-anticipated Renault Megane RS will be priced in the neighbourhood of $45,000 when it arrives in the third quarter of this year, making it more expensive than the Volkswagen Golf GTI.

Renault will bring the car to Australia in 'basic' Sport trim initially, with prices kicking off from around $45,000 in manual guise. The electronic dual-clutch (EDC) transmission will cost an additional $2500, pushing the sticker to around $47,500.

By way of comparison, the manual Golf GTI starts at $41,490 and jumps to $43,990 with the DSG transmission. The more powerful (and three-door only) GTI Performance Edition 1 cost $47,990 at launch, but just 150 examples were available.

So, what does paying the extra get you in the Renault? Where the GTI makes 169kW and 350Nm, the 1.8-litre turbocharged Frenchie pumps out 205kW and 390Nm in base trim, jumping to 224kW in the range-topping, cup-chassis equipped Trophy.

Regardless of trim, the hot Megane should be well equipped. All variants get a digital instrument panel, an 8.7-inch central touchscreen and Apple CarPlay, along with bucket seats trimmed in Alcantara.

The manual hits 100km/h in 5.8 seconds, and tops out at 255km/h – 5 km/h faster than the dual-clutch, which claims the same 0-100km/h time. The manual is also lighter, weighing in at 1407kg instead of the EDC version's 1430kg.

Global markets will have a Cup model sitting between the Sport and Trophy, but the Australian market will only get the Sport and Trophy.

Along with more power, the Trophy rides on a more focused 'cup chassis'. Other spec differences (along with the price) are yet to be confirmed for the Australian market.

Stay tuned for our first drive review of the Megane RS in the coming days.