The best news to report here isn’t to do with other-worldly lateral grip or physics-defying body control. It’s that, despite its obvious superpowers, the Trophy-R remains a fast Mégane with all of the outstanding facets that we’ve come to revere, given increasingly flavourless rivals.
It hasn’t been warped into a pastiche with a few aspects of its dynamic talent amplified out of all proportion, so much as transported onto a higher level of speed and excitement whole and unaltered.
Which isn’t meant to suggest that the Trophy-R rides like a normal Mégane RS, or is equally easy to guide down a bumpy B-road. You earn your corn in this car. Although the ride isn’t heinously crashy, the suspension is firm and the tyre sidewalls are unsympathetically hard and thin. The wheels skip between short, sharp lumps and bumps when the road surface suddenly turns cruel.
In the meantime, every one of those bumps is felt through the bristling, weighty, scalpel-precise steering and will frequently knock the car slightly off course. Plenty of rival hot hatchbacks make better fast road cars than this, it’s true. But none is more involving or more devoted to providing tactile vivid thrills when the opportunity presents.