What is it?
There’s more to this facelifted fourth-generation Renault Mégane Sport Tourer than a lightly revamped cabin and a few modest exterior styling tweaks.
The big news here is that the estate version of Renault’s accomplished C-segment model is now available as a plug-in hybrid, with the tax-friendly status and feel-good eco credentials that the addition of a plug socket and supplementary electric motor inevitably brings.
It joins the newly released hybrid Clio supermini and the plug-in Captur crossover in Renault’s expanding ‘E-Tech’ family of partly electrified vehicles, and the hope is that these new models will help warm customers up to the idea of owning a fully electric vehicle (such as the Renault Zoe) further down the line.
They all make use of the same normally aspirated 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol engine, which is paired with a smaller electric motor and an integrated starter-generator. But where the Clio is only a conventional hybrid and so comes with a 1.2kWh battery for short bursts of electric-only driving, the Captur and Mégane gain a larger 9.8kWh (7.5kWh gross) power source.
So the plug-in Mégane can travel a WLTP-certified 30 miles on nothing but electricity alone; manages a claimed economy figure of 217.9mpg; and thanks to a lab-tested CO2 emissions rating of 30g/km, falls into the 10% benefit-in-kind tax bracket. Company car owners will no doubt find that last part appealing.