The Megane range will be the first to be fitted with Renault’s new twin-clutch gearbox technology. The system’s rollout begins from the start of next year.
The six-speed unit, which will be called DCT (Dual Clutch Technology), will initially be mated to Renault’s new 108bhp 1.5-litre diesel engine and will be available on the hatch, estate and Scenic models.
However, unlike most twin-clutch gearboxes, Renault’s system will not be available with steering wheel-mounted paddles or switches.
“When you are talking about a Ferrari it makes sense to have paddles, but not here,” said Christian Steyer, Renault’s development chief for C-segment vehicles. “If the transmission is well focused then the driver will have fun, regardless of paddle shifts. We do not see the point of such a system for our cars.”
Although Steyer conceded that a paddle-shift system would make more sense on cars with more than 200bhp, insiders suggest that Renault has no current plans to introduce the system on its Renaultsport models.
Renault has also confirmed that it will begin the introduction of fuel-saving start-stop technology on its cars in late 2010 or early 2011.