Renault Mégane RS 2010 to 2016 Buyer’s Guide

There is no doubt that the Renault Mégane RS 250, 265 and 275 models were some of the best hot hatches of the early to mid-2010s. Just like the previous version of the Mégane RS, the 2010 to 2016 models featured excellent performance but this time they were wrapped up in an overall more refined package.

Today, the different versions of the Mégane RS III can be purchased at quite reasonable prices (largely thanks to the huge deprecation they and their new owners suffered). This makes the 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS a fantastic buy for anyone looking for an early 2010s performance hatch.

However, these cars can be expensive to maintain and there are a lot of bad examples out there. That’s why we hope that this buyers guide will give you the information you need to detect and avoid these bad Méganes, so you can find a nice example that will provide many miles of motoring enjoyment.

How to Use This Mégane RS 2010 to 2016 Buyer’s Guide

In this buyers guide, we will provide some background information about the car’s specifications and history to start with. Next, we will delve into the buyer’s guide section, where we will outline important considerations to keep in mind during the inspection and test drive process. Finally, we will look at some more general car buying tips to help you secure the best deal on a Mégane RS III.

The History of the Third Generation Renault Mégane RS

Credit: Renault

Initially unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in 2009, the new version of the Mégane RS would build on the pedigree of the much loved Mégane F1 Team R26 and Mégane R26.R models. Labelled the Mégane Renaultsport 250, the new car would be based on the third generation version of the standard Mégane platform.

Under the sleek yet sporty bodywork, Renault squeezed a new 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine with peak power at 5,500 rpm up to 250 PS (247 bhp, 184 kW), as the car’s name suggests – and peak torque up to 340Nm (251 lb-ft) from around 3,000 rpm. This was a 20 PS and 40Nm gain over the already very capable Mégane R26.R from the previous generation.

Equipped with a twin-scroll turbo, the Mégane RS 250’s engine was advertised as extremely responsive and it produces a high amount of torque at low revs, with 80% of its maximum torque available from just 1,900rpm. Renault claimed that the engine’s broad range of useful revs made the new Mégane RS a pleasure to drive in everyday use, and even more enjoyable when the power unit is really pushed to its limits.

Renault’s design team mated the powerful new engine to a six-speed manual transmission that sent all 250 of the raging horses to the front wheels.

Just like the Renault Sport versions of the Twingo and Clio, the Megane RS 250 came in two different versions: the Mégane Renaultsport 250 Cup and the Mégane Renaultsport 250. The Cup version, priced at £21,995, came with a specific Cup chassis, while the standard model, priced at £22,995, includes additional equipment and the standard sport chassis setting.

Some of the main features of the Cup Suspension Pack that came standard on the Cup RS included a limited slip differential, which helps improve traction and handling, as well as stiffer springs, dampers, and an anti-roll bar to enhance the vehicle’s stability and road holding. Stopping power was also improved with the addition of better grooved discs and red-finished Brembo brake calipers. Michelin Pilot Sport 2 235/40 tyres and ‘AX-L’ 18″ x 8.25″ alloy wheels finished in a sleek satin black finish rounded off main performance changes of the Cup Suspension Pack.

Credit: Renault

The standard Renaultsport 250 was designed to be a more comfortable, yet still sporty offering. It was equipped with leather upholstery, heated front seats, and an electrically adjustable driver’s seat with a memory function. It was also given a Renault Hands Free card, dual-zone climate control, automatic lights and wipers, 18-inch Keza alloy wheels wrapped in 225/40 Dunlop Sport Maxx TT tyres, extra tinting on the tailgate and rear side windows, a tire pressure monitor, and a Multi-functional TunePoint. Renault also gave buyers the opportunity to upgrade the car with the Cup Suspension Pack, which included Recaro seats and came at an additional £1,950.

Along with the standard features on the two packages, buyers could also select from a number of optional extras including: LED daytime running lights, bi-xenon headlamps, sporty Recaro seats, 19-inch Speedline alloy wheels wrapped in 235/35 Continental Sport Contact 5 tyres, a Carminat TomTom navigation system, Arkamys 4×30 RDS radio with a 6 CD changer and Bluetooth capabilities, a Multi-Functional TunePoint, electric folding door mirrors, front parking sensors, and a fixed glass roof. Additionally, Renaultsport’s Monitor telemetry system was made available for tracking performance and Renault gave buyers the option of two different interior colour options.

A total of seven colours were available at launch: Glacier White, Pearl Black, Oyster, Capsicum Red, Extreme Blue, Mercury, and Sport Yellow (a colour that was unique to the Mégane RS). The front bumper, door mirrors, rear diffuser and some other exterior trim pieces were finished in gloss black as standard but buyers could opt to have them in an anthracite finish as well.

Renault Introduces the Mégane RS 265 Trophy

Credit: Renault

Not long after the Mégane RS 250 was in the hands of customers, Renault would introduce a more powerful special edition model, the RS 265 Trophy. As its name suggests it is a bit more powerful than the standard car, with 265 PS (261 bhp, 195 kW) and 362 Nm (266 lb-ft) on tap from its turbocharged 2.0-litre engine. This resulted in a very slight increase in performance with the 265 Trophy now capable of hitting 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.0 seconds and going on to a slightly boosted top speed of 255 km/h (158 mph).

While there was some speculation that the RS 265 Trophy would be somewhat of a spiritual successor to the stripped out and hardcore R26.R from the previous generation, it quickly became clear it wasn’t. No suspension or chassis alterations were made, however, F1-inspired Bridgestone Potenza RE050A tyres and new 19-inch gloss black Speedline alloys with red detailing were included in the more powerful package.

Credit: Renault

Other tweaks included standard LED daytime running lights and trophy decals for the air intakes and doors. Two metallic paint choices were available as well: Liquid Yellow and black.

Stepping inside the Trophy features Recaro sport seats with yellow seatbelts and detailing, as well as a ‘Renaultsport Monitor’ that gives the driver real-time data on aspects such as engine performance, acceleration, lap time, and of course G-force data.

To keep an air of exclusivity around the 2011 Mégane RS 265 Trophy, Renault limited production to a total of 500 units, with 50 of those making their way to the UK at a price of £27,820.

Monaco Grand Prix Limited Edition Introduced

The Monaco Grand Prix Limited Edition was another special edition RS produced for the 2011 model year. Only 14 countries would get the Monaco Grand Prix car and all examples were finished in a special Pearlescent White colour with Piano Black accents on the side mirrors, fog-light surrounds and other exterior trim pieces.

Other unique features of the limited-edition car included: 19-inch wheels, red Brembo brake calipers, bixenon directional headlamps and a panoramic roof. Stepping inside the Monaco Edition drivers and occupants are greeted by black and white leather upholstery with white trim on the centre console, dashboard, and door handles. The seats and floor mats were unique to the car with special Monaco GP stitching.

Australia Gets Its Own Special Edition Model

After the Monaco Grand Prix Limited Edition proved to be highly sought after in Australia, Renault decided to give the country their own special edition Mégane. The Mégane RS Australian Grand Prix Limited Edition (also known as the Mégane RS 250 AGP) was priced from $49,990 Australian dollars and came with a number of changes similar to those of the Monaco special edition.

The main changes included 19-inch Steev alloy wheels with red accents and R.S. branding, as well as red Brembo brake calipers and track-tested Bridgestone RE050A tyres. The exterior was further enhanced by a high-gloss black paint job and a fixed glass roof. Additional features included bi-xenon directional headlights, front and rear parking sensors, satellite navigation, and Renault Sport Recaro front seats upholstered in black leather.

Just 50 AGP models were produced and each one came with an individually numbered plaque to confirm its build number in the production run.

More Power Comes to the Standard Mégane RS

Credit: Renaul

Those that missed out on the more powerful Trophy model didn’t have to wait long to see the performance upgrades on the standard car. Starting from the 2012 model year (introduced in 2011), the RS 250 would be replaced by the Mégane RS 265, and just like the older model, the new car could be purchased with either a “Cup” or “Sport” package.

Styling changes were fairly minor with Renault introducing new “Tibor” 18-inch wheels (the 19-inch optional ones remained the same). The other main exterior change was wider LED daytime running lights with 6 LEDS rather than three, and on the inside the RS 265 was given Piano Black interior highlights for a more sophisticated look. Fans of the Extreme Blue and Sport Yellow colours would have been disappointed as Renault dropped them from the available colours to choose from.

While the 2011 Trophy model was limited in production, Renault would offer a few “Trophy” packages for the 2012 model as an option in some markets. The Trophy pack added Recaro cloth front bucket seats with leatherette trim, 19-inch STEEV alloy wheels, a Renault Smart Card Key for hands-free entry and engine start, and a tyre pressure monitor.

For those who wanted the best of the best, they could go one step further. The Trophy+ added The front and rear parking sensors, bi-xenon directional headlights, a fixed glass roof with shade cover, an integrated satellite navigation system with a 7-inch screen and reversing camera, an electrically adjustable driver’s seat with memory function and lumbar support, and lastly charcoal leather trimmed, heated and height adjustable front seats.

The Mégane RS Sets a Nürburgring Record

To commemorate the Mégane RS setting the fastest front-wheel drive lap time around the Nürburgring in June 2011, Renault created a limited edition model. Labelled the Trophy 8:08 (which signalled the record setting lap time), the special edition included 19-inch black STEEV alloy wheels with red highlights around the rim, Bridgestone Potenza RE050A tyres, Recaro leather trimmed front bucket seats, bi-xenon directional headlights, limited edition Trophy decals, and a choice of two limited edition colors: Renault Sport’s signature liquid yellow and pearl white. These same Bridgestone Potenza RE050A tyres were used on the record breaking run and the car was limited in production.

Red Bull Special Editions

The combination of Red Bull’s car designs and Renault’s engine power was a force to be reckoned with in the world of Formula 1 during the early 2010s. It took Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel to four world titles and to celebrate the 2011 and 2012 championship wins, Renault introduced a couple of special edition models.

The first up was the RB7 Edition, which was named after the 2011 Infiniti Red Bull car and was launched in 2012. Based on the RS 265 Cup package that offered improved handling performance and a limited-slip differential, the RB7 came in a special black and yellow paint job that was complimented by Red Bull decals. The car was also given red Brembo brake calipers, 19-inch Steeve wheels wrapped in Bridgestone Potenza tyres, leather Recaro bucket seats, and of course Renault’s Sport monitor system that can tell drivers how many G’s they are pulling on a track day and all sorts of other performance related information.

The RB8 Edition was the second of these “Red Bull” special models and it got its name from the 2012 championship winning F1 car. Launched in 2013, the Renault Mégane RS RB8 was much the same as the previous year’s model, however, this time the car was finished in a paint scheme that closer resembled the proper racing machine. It also featured a special Red Bull Racing home page on the RS Monitor display and the same Cup package features, wheels and tyres as the RB7.

Production of both models was limited, with 522 RB7s rolling off the production line and just 120 units of the RB8 making their way into the hands of buyers.  

Renault Gives the Mégane RS III a Facelift

Credit: Renault

By 2013 Renault was ready to introduce a facelifted version of the Mégane RS for the 2014 model year. While the car would first be revealed online, it would get a proper unveiling at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show along with the rest of the updated Mégane line-up a few days later.

The main change was to the front bumper design which now more resembled the ones on Renault’s other vehicles, including the new Clio. New elliptical headlights were also included to make sure the Mégane’s looks were more aligned with the rest of the range. Inside, there were some changes as well with the Mégane now featuring Renault’s new R-Link multimedia system.

In addition to the facelifted model, Renault also trimmed down the available options. The car was now only available in one trim package with the option of adding the Cup chassis upgrades, which included more performance-oriented suspension and a limited-slip differential.

Renault Responds to Competitors with the Mégane RS 275

Credit: Renault

Not too long after the Mégane RS 265 set the front-wheel drive lap record at the Nürburgring, its competitors were trying to knock it off its pedestal. The Leon Cupra 280 would be the first car to do so, setting a lap time of 7 minutes and 58.4 seconds. However, Renault was not going to take this lying down. The company quickly responded by introducing the RS 275 Trophy-R, which reclaimed the top spot with a time roughly four seconds faster.

To achieve the impressive lap time, Renault’s engineers increased power to 275 PS (271 bhp, 202 kW) with the addition of an Akrapovič titanium exhaust system. They also put the Mégane on a serious diet, with the car shedding 101 kg (223 lbs) to get into fighting form. This impressive weight saving was achieved by stripping out the sound deadening, air conditioning, back seats, sat-nav and more.

To compliment the more powerful engine and lighter body, the Trophy-R was kitted out with special Öhlins dampers and Allevard composite coil springs, Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres stretched over 19-inch Speedline Turini wheels. Bigger 350 mm (13.8-inch) 2-piece floating discs mounted on aluminium bowls were also available as an option, along with a lighter weight lithium-ion battery that shaved off an extra 16kg in weight. The use of aluminium helped reduce unsprung mass by 3kg and Renault claimed that the larger discs reduced their operating temperature by 100°C, resulting in a more consistent pedal feel.

Credit: Renault

For those who like to fiddle with their suspension settings, a knob on the dashboard was fitted to allow adjustment of the dampers through 20 positions at the front and 30 at the rear. Both the body height and attitude of the Trophy-R can also be varied by adjusting the compression of the Allevard composite coil springs.

Buyers could enhance the Trophy-R package even further by opting for a ‘Nürburgring Pack’, which comprised of the improved braking kit, lithium-ion battery, two Sabelt safety harnesses, four spare wheel covers and a retaining strap.

In total, only 250 examples of the 275 Trophy-R were produced, making it arguably the most sought after Mégane RS III produced. The car also went on to set front-wheel drive track records at circuits in Japan, including Suzuka, Tsukuba and Fuji International Speedway.

Renault Launches the Mégane RS 275 Trophy

Credit: Renault

For buyers who wanted a slightly tamer, more comfortable car, they could opt for the Mégane RS 275 Trophy. This non-R version of the car essentially retained some of the creature comforts and practical features that the Trophy-R got rid of in the name of weight saving. Apart from that it was essentially the same, with the same power output, suspension upgrades and other features that set the Trophy-R apart from the standard Mégane RS.

Like the more track-orientated car, the normal Trophy was also limited in production. However, the number of units created was around four times higher, with roughly 1,000 units being produced.

The Mégane RS Sport Limited Edition Heads to Australia

Australia would receive another special edition model in the form of the RS Sport Limited Edition in 2014. Compared to the performance orientated Trophy-R and Trophy models, the RS Sport was intended to be a more toned down, cheaper special edition.

It was priced from just AU$37,990 and came with the less power 265 hp engine. The firmer Cup suspension (and limited-slip differential) was also gone and in its place was a setup that was more sport orientated than track.

Some of the other features of the RS Sport included 18-inch alloy wheels that were similar to those on the RS 265 Cup, but in silver rather than black. The brake calipers were also finished in a silver colour to match the rims.

Due to the cheaper price, Renault removed some of the equipment that came as standard on the RS 265 Cup. The automatic keyless entry, automatic on/off headlights, and RS Monitor 2.0 were all gone, as was the dual-zone climate control which was replaced with manual air-conditioning. However, the car came with cloth-trimmed Recaro sports seats which were standard on the much more expensive Trophy model.

All 50 models produced were finished in a Pacific Blue colour and buyers who purchased the car early received a $500 fuel card free of charge.

Renault Mégane RS 2010 – 2016 Specifications

Based on the standard versions and options of the car.

ModelMégane RS 250Mégane RS 265 & 265 TrophyMégane RS 275 Trophy & Trophy-R
Country/LocationPalencia Spain and Dieppe FrancePalencia Spain and Dieppe FrancePalencia Spain and Dieppe France
Year of production2010 – 20112012 – 2016 (final model year was 2017)2014 – 2016 (final model year was 2017)
LayoutFront, transverse, inclined rearward by 8°Front, transverse, inclined rearward by 8°Front, transverse, inclined rearward by 8°
Engine/Engines2.0 litre F4R turbocharged Petrol2.0 litre F4R turbocharged Petrol2.0 litre F4R turbocharged Petrol
Power250 PS (247 bhp, 184 kW) at 5,500 rpm265 PS (261 bhp, 195 kW) at 5,500 rpm275 PS (271 bhp, 202 kW) at 5,500 rpm
Torque340 Nm (251 lb-ft) from 3,000 rpm362 Nm (266 lb-ft) from 3,000 rpm362 Nm (266 lb-ft) from 3,000 rpm
Gearbox6-speed manual 6-speed manual with limited slip differential on Cup Chassis models6-speed manual 6-speed manual with limited slip differential on Cup Chassis models6-speed manual with limited slip differential

6-speed sequential manual with limited slip differential
Brakes Front4 piston calipers and vented 340 x 28 mm (13.4 x 1.1 inch) discs4 piston calipers and vented 340 x 28 mm (13.4 x 1.1 inch) discs4 piston calipers and vented 350 x 28 mm (13.78 x 1.1 inch) discs
Brakes RearSingle piston floating calipers and solid 290 x 11 mm (11.4 x 0.43 inch) discsSingle piston floating calipers and solid 290 x 11 mm (11.4 x 0.43 inch) discsSingle piston floating calipers and solid 290 x 11 mm (11.4 x 0.43 inch) discs
Wheels Front18-inch Keza alloy wheels – standard

‘AX-L’ 18″ x 8.25″ alloy wheels – Cup Chassis

19-inch Speedline alloy wheels – Option
18-inch Keza alloy wheels – standard

‘AX-L’ 18″ x 8.25″ alloy wheels – Cup Chassis 19-inch Speedline alloy wheels – Option

19-inch gloss black Speedline alloys – RS 265 Trophy
19-inch Speedline Turini wheels
Wheels Rear18-inch Keza alloy wheels – standard

‘AX-L’ 18″ x 8.25″ alloy wheels – Cup Chassis

19-inch Speedline alloy wheels – Option
18-inch Keza alloy wheels – standard

‘AX-L’ 18″ x 8.25″ alloy wheels – Cup Chassis 19-inch Speedline alloy wheels – Option

19-inch gloss black Speedline alloys – RS 265 Trophy
19-inch Speedline Turini wheels
Tyres Front225/40 Dunlop Sport Maxx TT tyre – standard 18-inch

235/40 Michelin Pilot Sport 2 – Cup chassis 18-inch

Continental Sport Contact 5 235/35 – on optional 19-inch wheels
225/40 Dunlop Sport Maxx TT tyre – standard 18-inch

235/40 Michelin Pilot Sport 2 – Cup chassis 18-inch

Continental Sport Contact 5 235/35 – on optional 19-inch wheels

235/35 Bridgestone Potenza RE050A – RS 265 Trophy
235/35 Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2
Tyres Rear225/40 Dunlop Sport Maxx TT tyre – standard 18-inch

235/40 Michelin Pilot Sport 2 – Cup chassis 18-inch

Continental Sport Contact 5 235/35 – on optional 19-inch wheels
225/40 Dunlop Sport Maxx TT tyre – standard 18-inch

235/40 Michelin Pilot Sport 2 – Cup chassis 18-inch

Continental Sport Contact 5 235/35 – on optional 19-inch wheels

235/35 Bridgestone Potenza RE050A – RS 265 Trophy
235/35 Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2
Suspension FrontPseudo MacPherson strutPseudo MacPherson strutPseudo MacPherson strut
Suspension RearTorsion beam axleTorsion beam axleTorsion beam axle
Weight1,387 kg (3,058 lb)1,387 kg (3,058 lb)1,280 kg (2,820 lb) – Trophy-R 1,387 kg (3,058 lb) standard Trophy
Top speed250 km/h (155 mph)255 km/h (158 mph)255 km/h (158 mph)
0 – 100 km/h (62 mph)6.1 seconds6.0 seconds6.0 seconds

Mégane Renault Sport Mk3 Buyer’s Guide

Credit: Renault

Now that we have given you a bit of background information about the 2010 to 2016 Renault Mégane RS, let’s take a look at what you need to know about buying one.

While these cars are no Toyota Corolla when it comes to reliability and low-cost running, a well maintained one should go on for plenty of miles of trouble-free motoring. However, a Mégane RS III that has been looked after poorly can cause real trouble, so take your time when looking for one.

Before we dive into common problems with the 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS and things to watch out for, we have included some things that you should think about before conducting an inspection.

Setting Up an Inspection of a Renault Mégane RS

Here are a few tips when arranging an inspection of a mk3 Mégane RS (or any car for that matter):

  • Try to do a physical inspection of the Mégane RS – We generally recommend that you do a physical inspection of the vehicle first. This can reveal any hidden issues that may not be visible in the listing photos or description. If it is not possible for you to inspect the car in person, consider enlisting the help of a reliable friend or third party.
  • Take a reliable friend or helper with you to an inspection – Another tip is to bring a helper with you during the inspection as another pair of eyes, ears and hands will often detect more issues than one. Your helper can also provide you with their opinion on the Mégane RS you are inspecting and whether they believe it is a worthwhile purchase.
  • Look at the Mégane RS III at the seller’s home or place of business – Another thing we recommend is that you try to inspect the Mégane RS at the seller’s house or place of business. This will give you an idea of the conditions in which the car is usually stored, parked and driven. A car that is stored outside on the street is more likely to have bodywork issues, rust, leaks, etc. Checking the conditions of the roads where the Mégane RS is regularly driven is also a good idea as if they are rough and full of potholes, pay extra attention to the wheels, tyres, suspension, etc. as there may be a higher chance of premature wear or damage.
  • Inspect the Renault in the morning if you can – This is not a requirement, but it can be a good idea as it gives the seller less opportunity to hide any potential issues with their Mégane RS by warming up the engine or cleaning it prior to your arrival.
  • Tell the seller not to drive the car prior your arrival if possible – This sort of carries on from the previous point. A warm engine can mask potential issues, so it’s important to inspect the car while the engine is cold. However, this isn’t always practical as the seller may need to drive to the inspection point.
  • Don’t tell a dealer you want to view a particular car before your arrival – If you give a dealer prior notice that you want to come down and inspect a particular vehicle it gives them more time to clean up any potential issues. However, depending on how the dealer operates this may not always be possible.
  • Be cautious when inspecting any used Mégane RS III in the rain or after it has just been washed – Water can mask various bodywork and paint issues. Therefore, it’s recommended to have a second look at a Mégane RS before making a decision, if it’s raining during the initial inspection or test drive (or if it has just been washed and there is still water on the bodywork).
  • Get the car in direct sunlight if possible – Ask the seller to move their Renault Mégane RS outside if it’s being kept in a garage or showroom, as indoor lighting can cover up defects that are be visible in natural sunlight.

Purchasing a Mk3 Mégane RS with significant issues

It’s ideal to purchase a used Mégane RS with no issues, however, it’s important to keep in mind that all used cars will have some sort of issue, whether major or minor. Minor issues such as stone chips or scuffed trim are common and acceptable in used cars, but it’s best to avoid purchasing any Mégane RS with serious mechanical or bodywork issues unless you are aware of the problem, the cost to fix it and are comfortable with it. Even if you can get a great deal on a Mégane RS with serious issues, it’s often more financially sound to choose a car in better condition.

When inspecting a used Mégane RS, try to identify as many issues as possible and make note of them. Then try to find out the cost to fix them (mainly the major ones) before making a purchase. If you do find issues, try to negotiate a discount, especially if any problems seem like they could be serious. Keep in mind that the problems you find may be more extensive and costly to repair than initially thought, so it can be wise to add a bit more to any quote you receive. In summary, it’s okay to buy a Mégane RS with serious issues if you are fully informed and prepared for it, but we generally recommend that you look for a well-maintained, good condition car.

Where is the Best Place to Buy a Mégane RS 250, 265 or 275?

Credit: Renault

Dealers and classified/auction sites (think eBay, TradeMe, Autotrader, Gumtree, etc.) are going to be your best place to look for a Mégane RS for sale. However, we also recommend that you check out any Mégane or Renault clubs in your area. This is because the owners in these sorts of groups tend to look after their cars a bit better and are more knowledgeable about maintaining them. Here are a few examples of some groups/clubs:

Renault Sport Club UK – Club dedicated to all Renault Sport cars including the different versions of the Mégane.

RS Mégane – Dedicated to just Mégane RS models and has quite an active community.

Mégane Sport – Much the same as above.

It is also worth checking to see if there are any social media groups dedicated to the Mégane RS in your area.

How Much Should I Pay for a Mégane RS III?

The price of a Renault Mégane will vary greatly depending on several factors such as what model you are looking at (250, 265, 275 Trophy, etc.), year, condition, where the car is being sold, and even who is selling it. For example, a Trophy-R 275 in excellent condition sold by an official Renault dealer will be worth significantly more than an older model 250 with high mileage sold by a private seller.

Buying from an official Renault dealer will also tend to come with a higher price, but it can also offer benefits such as better buyer protection and an extended warranty. However, it is best to check what protections/warranty are on offer in your local area as this does change depending on where you are in the world. Third-party warranties when buying from non-Renault dealers are also usually available. We recommend that you check these out to see what they cover as once again it may change depending on the location and provider.

As we can’t really provide you with an exact figure of what you should pay for a Mégane RS, we recommend that you use the prices from auction/classified or dealers sites as a rough guide. We also recommend that you add a bit to your budget for any unexpected expenses that may occur after you purchase the vehicle.

Checking the VIN and Model

We always recommend that you have a look at the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) or chassis number. The VIN can tell you quite a bit of information about the Mégane RS Mk3 you are inspecting, such as the model, its production date, and more. You should be able to find the VIN in the following locations:

  • Inside the driver’s door
  • Base of the windscreen on the passenger’s side (if the OEM windscreen is fitted)
  • Engine bay

If you can’t find the VIN in the correct locations it may be a sign that the vehicle has been in an accident and body panels have been replaced (remember to check that the VINs you find match as well).

Make Sure That the Car/Specs are Correct for What is Being Advertised

It is a good idea to make sure that the Mégane RS you are looking at is actually what is being advertised in the listing description. For example, you don’t want to pay extra for what you think is a Cup Chassis car when it is really just a standard Mégane RS. If you are looking at a Cup Mégane RS make sure it has the following:

  • Red coloured Brembo calipers
  • Cup badge on the pillar (not on all Cup models)
  • Cup cars usually jump a little bit on full lock due to the diff (this will happen on other models with a limited-slip differential – Trophy, Trophy-R, etc.). You can also feel the diff when doing something like exiting a roundabout in second gear
  • Black wheels, but this isn’t always a guarantee as they are starting to get a bit older and plenty of owners will have swapped rims
  • Grooved discs
  • Slight drop in ride height, but you probably aren’t going to notice this

Trophy models, especially the R, have a few extra features that make them more distinguishable (as we wrote about in the history section), but still take your time checking everything is legitimate. Additionally, Cup models fitted with the optional Recaro seats can be quite hard to source, so expect to pay a premium for those.

Most good owners should have the original receipts and documents that came with the car. You should be able to use these to work out what package the car came with and whether or not it is a special edition model.


Credit: Renault

While there are some preconceptions about the reliability of Renault’s cars and power units, the 2.0-litre F4R turbocharged engine in the 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS is actually quite a reliable and robust motor. However, this is very reliant on whether or not the vehicle has been serviced properly. A poorly maintained one of these engines can and probably will cause issues (just like any car really), so if there is no service history be very cautious.

Beginning Your Inspection

Begin your inspection of the power unit by opening the hood/bonnet. It should open smoothly and the struts should function properly. If the struts are not working properly, this is not a significant issue, but it can be used as leverage to negotiate a lower price if you decide to purchase the Mégane RS III. Additionally, examine the catch and hinges for signs of replacement, as this may indicate previous accident damage or some other issue. Here are some other things you should check:

  • Cleanliness – check how clean the engine bay is. A dirty engine bay may indicate neglect, however, don’t be fooled by a spotless looking one as it could indicate that the seller is trying to conceal issues such as oil leaks by washing the engine.
  • Obvious Issues – Perform a quick check for any obvious visible issues such as leaks, missing or broken components, and any other abnormalities.
  • Modifications – There are various engine modifications available for the Mégane RS III, so check for any modifications that have been made to the vehicle. While modified cars can be great, it is important to ensure that the modifications are appropriate for the vehicle and properly executed. Improper tuning or incompatible modifications can lead to potential reliability issues in the future, so keep this in mind when evaluating any Renault Mégane RS that has been modified.

Inspecting the Fluids

When inspecting a Renault Mégane RS III, make sure you check the condition of the engine oil and other fluids in the engine bay. The condition of the oil and other fluids can give you quite a good indication of the current health of the engine and other vehicle components.

Be on the lookout for black sludge, which soften indicate that the oil is quite old and hasn’t been replaced in a while. Also watch out for any metallic particles or grit, which could indicate serious problems such as bearing failure. However, these sorts of particles can also be caused by less alarming reasons such as a recent engine rebuild, but we would ere on the side of caution.

Another thing to be on the lookout for is any foamy, frothy, or milky looking oil, which could indicate issues such as condensation in the oil, overfilling, or more worryingly a blown head gasket.

While not required, it can be a good idea to have the oil analysed before making a purchase. This can help you determine whether or not there are unwanted particles in the oil or if the vehicle needs more frequent oil changes.

How Often Does a 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS Need to Be Serviced?

Depending on where you live in the world this can change. For example, in most of Europe Renault recommends servicing every 20,000 km (12,500 miles) or every 24 months, whereas in some other parts of the world like Australia the servicing is as frequent as 10,000 km (roughly 6,200 miles) or every 12 months. In the areas with 24-month service intervals owners can still opt for more frequent servicing. If the owner has done this it probably shows that they care quite a bit about their Mégane RS.

If you discover that servicing has been infrequent and hasn’t been done at or before the recommended service interval we would probably pass on the vehicle. While it may be alright, proper servicing is key to keeping these cars running well and it is probably best to not take the risk when there are still plenty of good used Mégane RS mk3s out there.

Are There Any Common Oil Leaks on a 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS?

The Mégane RS 250, 265 and 275 models aren’t known to have a lot of problems with oil leaks, but it is important to keep in mind that it may become more of an issue as these cars age. Below we have listed some of the more common leaks that can occur on a Mégane RS III (note, it may be difficult to see some leaks if the plastic top cover for the engine is fitted):

Timing/valve/rocker cover leak

A leak around the timing cover and timing cover bolts is probably the most likely leak you will come across during an inspection of a 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS. This isn’t too much of a problem as long as the leak doesn’t seem too major. The two most common causes of this problem are incorrectly tightened bolts and a bad timing cover gasket.

Neither of these problems are too much of an issue to fix, but it may be worth checking with your local Renault mechanic or specialist to get a rough estimate of the cost of repair. If you want to save a bit of money and are feeling brave you can fix the leak yourself (see a guide on how to do it in the video below).

If the leak is quite significant it can be a good idea to check the spark plugs for signs of oil as in bad cases oil can seep into the cylinders.

VVT Solenoid Leak

If you notice a leak from the sensor next to the coil pack/spark plugs it is probably the VVT solenoid. Replacing the solenoid isn’t too difficult or expensive, and some owners have even had luck stopping the leak by cleaning the problematic one. Note: this leak can often be confused with a timing cover leak.

Does the 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS Have a Timing Belt or Chain?

The Mk3 Renault Mégane RS uses a timing belt (cambelt), so it needs to be replaced periodically, along with some other components. Just like with the oil, Renault recommends different replacement intervals depending on which market the car is located in. In most markets the service interval is every 6 years or roughly 120,000 km (75,000 miles) and in some others (Australia) it is every 4 years or every 60,000 km (37,000 miles)

We suggest that you make sure the owner and any previous owners have adhered to whatever Renault recommends for the local market the Mégane is in. If the timing belt has been done at earlier intervals this is only a good thing in our eyes as it is a sign that the car has probably been cared for well (even if it isn’t necessary to do the belt and other timing components earlier than what Renault recommends).

If the timing belt is well overdue for a replacement that is a big put off for us. The Mk3 RS Mégane’s power unit is an interference engine, so if it breaks you could be looking at some seriously expensive repairs and possibly even a new motor. Another reason why we would be cautious of the car is the rest of the maintenance. If the owner has been lacklustre with servicing on such an important component, what else on the vehicle hasn’t been maintained properly?

Depending on where you live in the world and who you take the car to, the cost of replacing the timing belt can be quite high, so if it needs to be done in the near future, we would definitely factor that into the price.

What Else Needs Replacing with the Timing Belt?

It is generally recommended that you replace the following along with the timing/cam belt:

  • Dephaser pulley
  • Water pump and gasket
  • Auxiliary belt kit
  • Cam seals kit
  • Crank pulley bolt
  • Cylinder head end plugs x2
  • Oil filter
  • Engine oil
  • Coolant 5 litres

Strange Noise From the Timing Belt

Listen out for a weird whining and grinding noise that some liken to a pigeon cooing (you may also notice a tapping noise). There is a bit of speculation on this noise but it is generally believed to be caused by a timing/cam belt that is done up too tight. This doesn’t seem to be a problem for reliability, but some owners do find the noise a bit annoying.

Cooling System

A properly functioning cooling system is crucial for preventing engine and component failure on any internal combustion engined car. That’s why we have put together a bit of a list of things to check below during an inspection of a Renault Mégane RS:

Coolant Condition

Check what the coolant looks like in the expansion tank on the left side of the engine. You should be able to see its condition from the outside, but it is possible to remove the lid and look inside. However, make sure you only do this when the engine is cold and remove the lid slowly (once again, do not do this when the engine is warm and/or running).

Make sure the coolant is in good condition and not muddy/brown in colour. Renault generally recommends that you run their green/yellow coolant, but some dealers and service centres use red as well. It can also be a good idea to check in the service history and with the owner to see when the coolant was last replaced (if ever).

Coolant Leaks & Level

Another thing to do is to check the coolant level both before and after a test drive. If the level is too low we would be cautious as it could be a sign of a leak and it may have even led to the engine overheating at some point. If you notice a significant drop in the coolant level after a test drive it is another big warning sign of a leak or some other sort of issue. Don’t worry about a slight rise in the coolant level as this is perfectly normal as the engine warms.

When checking for coolant leaks, inspect as much of the cooling system as possible. Look around the coolant/expansion tank, the coolant hoses (as much as you can see), radiator, etc. If you notice that the coolant tank has cracked it should be replaced immediately. Watch out for crusted coolant as well as this can often indicate a leak.

Check for leaks before and after taking the Mégane RS for a test drive. After a test drive, let the vehicle sit for 10-15 minutes before rechecking for leaks, including coolant, oil, and any other fluids. Even if you don’t see any leaks, watch out for a sweet aroma as this could indicate a leak somewhere in the system.

Failing Water Pump

The water pump is generally a reliable component on the Mégane RS mk3 and it should be replaced with the timing belt, so you shouldn’t have too many issues here. However, as it is such an important component we still recommend that you keep an eye out for the following signs that may indicate it is falling or has failed:

  • Coolant leaks & low coolant level – A leak is probably going to be caused by the water pump, coolant lines, or expansion tank, but there are other things as well.
  • Whining and/or chuffing sounds – Listen out for any strange noises like this. They could be caused by something else, but it is always worth checking if it could be the water pump.
  • Slight knocking noises at idle
  • Overheating – A lengthy test drive is a good idea, as overheating may not become apparent during a shorter trip around the block. Keep in mind that overheating can also indicate other problems such as a faulty thermostat or radiator issues.
  • Steam or smoke – Keep an eye out for any steam or smoke coming from the front of the Renault Mégane RS. If you see any, it is best to avoid purchasing the car.
Make Sure the Heater Works as Intended

Turning the heater on to its highest setting can be a useful test for the Renault Mégane RS’s water pump. The heater core relies on the water pump to function properly. If the pump is not working, fluid will not be circulated through the system and the heater won’t work.

When the heater is turned on, you should feel a strong blast of hot air. This hot air should continue to come out of the vents if the water pump is functioning correctly. If the warm air stops or gradually reduces, it is a sign that the water pump is not working correctly.

It is worth noting that no heat from the heater can also be caused by other issues such as low coolant, a stuck or bad thermostat, extremely low ambient temperatures combined with low engine load, an incorrectly bled cooling system that has too much air in it, some sort of restriction in the heater core or engine block water passages, and more.

Thermostat Failure

There is quite a lot of talk from Mégane RS 250, 265 and 275 owners about the thermostat. It seems to be quite a common failure point with one of the main symptoms of an issue being hesitation at high engine speeds (around 5,500 rpm and up). Some owners even find that a faulty thermostat prevents them from hitting 6,000 rpm and above, so make sure you test the entire rev range once the vehicle is up to temperature.

Another sign of a faulty thermostat is the temperature gauge. On RS 250 models the gauge should sit somewhere from slightly left of the midpoint to bang in the middle, whereas the gauge should only sit in the middle on 265 and 275 models. If you have an OBD2 scanner on hand that can read the car’s temperature you should find that the temperature sits around the 80 to 90 degree mark. If it doesn’t get above 80 degrees there is a problem and the thermostat probably needs to be replaced.

Another thing to watch out for is a temperature gauge that bounces or moves up and down slightly while the engine is switched on. This problem typically indicates that the thermostat needs to be replaced.

Look for Air Bubbles in the Coolant

It can be a good idea to check the coolant for bubbles, but as we mentioned before do not open the tank while the car is running or the engine is still hot. A few bubbles during engine warm-up is pretty normal, but none should be present after a test drive and the engine has reached operating temperature. Bubbles may indicate air in the system, which can cause overheating. Air can enter the cooling system through issues such as a faulty radiator cap, air pockets in the radiator, or a bad head gasket.

Head Gasket/Cooling System Failure

Head gasket failure doesn’t seem to be too much of an issue on these cars, but we still recommend that you keep an eye out for the following issues that could indicate a problem:

  • Bubbles in the coolant or expansion tank
  • White, milky oil
  • Reduced engine power
  • Fouled spark plugs
  • Signs of low cooling system integrity
  • Presence of a coolant smell from the oil
  • Sweet smelling exhaust fumes
  • Noticeable white smoke from the exhaust pipe
  • Steam coming from the front of the Mégane RS III
  • Overheating engine

Head gasket repairs can be very expensive depending on what is required and what was damaged, so we would personally walk away if we suspected that a failure had occurred.

Misfires, Stuttering and General Poor Running

If you notice that the Mégane RS Mk3 you are test driving stutters and misfires, especially at higher engine speeds, it is probably the spark plugs. This seems to be a fairly common problem and, in most cases, it is caused by the spark plugs.

The Mégane RS seems to be very picky with what plugs are used in it and whether or not they are gapped correctly. The original plugs are NGK IFR7X8G (part number 224016940R) and they should be gapped to 0.6. Some owners like to use ik24 Denso plugsas well, however, these are often recommended for remapped cars.

Cars that have had a remap also seem more susceptible to the stuttering and misfiring issue. Getting another tuner to remap the car again can fix the problem, but it isn’t guaranteed. Another thing to keep in mind is that remapped RS Méganes tend to need more frequent spark plug changes, so check when they were last replaced and what they were replaced with.

Some other causes of stuttering and misfiring often include bad or wrong coils, MAP sensor issues (the turbo MAP sensor is not fixed with a screw and can pop out), O2 sensor issues, bad injectors and more. It is generally recommended that you stick with the OEM coils on these cars, but some Mégane RS III owners have had luck with cheaper Bosch coilpacks as well.

Check Injection System Warning

If you notice a “check injection system” warning it is probably the turbo boost pressure sensor. This warning is often accompanied by an “anti-pollution” code and the cruise control may not function correctly. It isn’t a major problem to replace the turbo boost pressure sensor, but it is worth fixing this problem as soon as possible.

If replacing the boost pressure sensor doesn’t resolve the issue it could be down to something like the car not being remapped correctly for the modifications or the actuator. If it is the actuator it needs to be sorted immediately as there have been a couple of reports of engine failure due to ignoring this warning.

Exhaust System

You probably aren’t going to have many issues here, but it is still worth giving the exhaust a good once over as a problem here could be expensive to fix depending on what it is.

Check for any strange noises such as rumbling, scrapping, rattling, ticking or whistling. A ticking noise that changes with engine speed is often a sign of an exhaust leak. Make sure the exhaust is held on firmly and it is in good condition. If it moves a lot it may be a sign that the hangers are in a bad way.

Catalytic Converter (CAT)

CAT failure can be a very expensive problem to fix, so check for the following things:

  • CEL (Check Engine Light)/warnings/fault codes
  • Smell of sulphur or rotten eggs from the exhaust
  • Reduced acceleration and sluggish engine performance
  • Excessive heat under the Mégane RS Mk3
  • Dark smoke from the car’s exhaust
  • Emission test failure – obviously going to need to get a test done to find this out or use the emissions test feature on your OBD2 scanner if you have one

Checking the fault codes are probably going to be your best method of determining whether or not the CAT has failed. This is why we suggest that you get yourself an OBDII scanner and take it to any inspection of a relatively modern car (the OBDII standard was implemented at different times for different markets).

Another thing to remember is that decat mods are popular with these cars. If the Mégane RS you are looking at does have a decat system, be aware that it will probably fail an emissions test. This isn’t a problem in some markets, but in others a failure will make the car unroadworthy.

Sports cats are another option for those looking to get the maximum out of their car’s engine and plenty of Mégane RS owners have fitted those. However, be aware that they can be very expensive (if you need to replace them at any point) and they can still fail emissions tests as many markets require the fitment of the standard catalytic converter (although most testers will pass the car as long as the emissions test requirements are met)

Aftermarket Exhaust Systems

Aftermarket systems from the likes of Scorpion, Miltek, Cobra and Remus are available for the 2010 to 2016 Renault Mégane RS. We aren’t going to go into what the best exhaust system is in this article, but we recommend that you try to find out if the car is running an aftermarket system and what exactly it is. We then recommend that you check online to make sure it is well reviewed and suitable for the Mégane RS Mk3. If it is a cheap, poorly reviewed one it suggest that the owner or a previous owner has cheaped out on modifications.

What Is the Correct Idle Speed on a Mk3 Renault Mégane RS?

Credit: Renault

When the engine is warm, the idle speed should be around 800-900 rpm. A slightly higher idle when the engine is cold is normal. However, once the Mégane is up to temperature, the idle should drop below 1,000 rpm and stay in the 800-900 rpm range.

If you find that the idle is a bit lumpy on cold start up (especially on a cold day) don’t be too alarmed. The 250, 265 and 275 RS Méganes are known to be a bit lumpy when starting from cold, but the rough running should go away after a minute or so. If the idle problems continue there is an issue that needs to be investigated.

One common cause of lumpiness is the air intake temperature sensor (part number 8200415410R). This red/orangey sensor is located in the boost pipe at the front of the engine. If the sensor has gone bad the car will often idle very poorly on cold starts and will probably stall. The engine will typically run much better if you switch the it back on, but sometimes it will stall for a second time before running correctly on the third attempt.

Idle problems can also be caused by a whole load of different things as well, from bad fuel, an air leak, dirty fuel injectors, spark plug problems and much more. You probably aren’t going to be able to tell what the problem is caused by during a short inspection, but keep in mind that if it was a simple fix the owner probably would have got it sorted before putting their Mégane RS on the market.

Bad Engine Mounts

Watch out for the following signs of a bad engine mount, especially on a Mégane RS that has seen a lot of action:

  • Engine movement – Check for excessive movement while revving the engine. Also, inspect the engine’s idle and look for any movement while viewing from underneath the car.
  • Excessive vibrations/shaking – Idle is usually when this is most evident. In some instances, the movement may even be visible on the body of the car.
  • Clunking, banging or other impact sounds – These sorts of noises could indicate that the engine is moving slightly due to a failed mount and is probably more likely to occur during gear changes.

Replacing the engine mounts is not usually very expensive on a Mk3 Mégane RS, but it can be used as leverage to negotiate a lower price. Also, keep in mind that the vibrations could be a symptom of another problem.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the symptoms above could be caused by the transmission mounts, but we will discuss that more in the “transmission” section of this guide.

Air Conditioning

Make sure that the air conditioning/climate control is functioning properly. If no cold air is felt or the air is weak, it could be due to various issues such as a refrigerant leak or a faulty AC compressor. Quite a few owners have complained about faulty compressors and they are extremely expensive to fix, so this is definitely something you want to check out before handing over any money.

Sometimes the cause of air con issues on these cars can also be the ECU locking out the compressor. Resetting it can fix the problem, but we would ere on the side of caution and assume it is something more serious.

Smoke from a Mégane RS

lots of smoke or steam from a Mégane RS (or any car for that matter) is never a good sign and you should probably move onto another Mk3 if the one you are looking at has a smoking problem. Don’t worry about a small amount of vapour from exhaust on startup as this is normally just condensation in the exhaust and it should go away fairly quickly.

We recommend that you get the seller to start their Mégane RS Mk3 for you for the first time. This way you can see what comes out the back of the car when it is started and how the seller treats the vehicle. If they rev the Mégane hard when it is cold, it is a sign that they haven’t treated the car well. Here are what the different colours of smoke can indicate:

White smoke

A whole load of white or grey smoke coming from a Mégane’s exhaust, could indicate that water/coolant has entered the cylinders due to a blown or leaking head gasket. To confirm if it’s coolant, watch out for a sweet smell from the exhaust. If the smoke is thick and lingers for a while, it could imply that the block or cylinder head is fractured.

One other thing to keep in mind is that white smoke can also indicate that the turbo seals have worn out/failed.

Blue/Grey smoke

The presence of this colour smoke could be attributed to various factors, such as worn piston rings, valve seals, turbo problems, and other potential issues. When checking for this sort of smoke it can be handy to have someone follow you while you test drive the Mk3 Mégane RS. Alternatively, keep an eye on the rear view mirror or get the seller to drive the car for a bit while you look out the back.

Black smoke

This type of smoke is typically an indicator that the engine is running excessively rich and burning an excessive amount of fuel. A whole load of different factors could be contributing to this problem, from dirty intake components to spark plug problems, injector issues, and much more. If the exhaust has a fuel-like smell, the engine is most likely running too rich.

In addition, if the Mégane RS has undergone modifications without a proper remap or tune, it can be more susceptible to this problem.

Another thing to keep in mind is that unburnt fuel being sent through the exhaust system can lead to premature catalytic converter failure, which as we discussed already can be an expensive problem.

Turbo Failure on a 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS

While turbo failure isn’t a common problem on these cars, it is still important to know the signs of a failed one as a problem here could be expensive to fix. Most of the time, turbo issues will be caused by something like a cracked boost pipe rather than the actual turbo, but we wouldn’t purchase a Mégane RS assuming that is the problem. We have listed some things below that could indicate there is a problem with the turbo system:

  • Strange rumbling, whistling or high-pitched metallic sounds – when the turbocharger is at full boost drive at a slow speed and then accelerate to high rpms while checking for any noises.
  • Distinctive blue or grey/whitish smoke – Distinctive blue or grey/whitish smoke can indicate a crack in the turbocharger’s housing or worn internal seals. This smoke will be more visible when the turbocharger is in use, so ask someone to follow you while test driving the Mégane RS Mk3. White/greyish smoke could signify a catastrophic failure of the turbo. We recommend that you steer clear of any Mégane RS Mk3 with significant smoking issues.
  • Burning lots of oil – It will be virtually impossible to accurately assess oil consumption during a test drive, but try to gather some information on how much oil the car burns from the owner. Some level of oil consumption is perfectly normal, particularly in older cars, but excessive consumption can indicate a problem.
  • Slow acceleration – Does the Mégane RS Mk3 you are test driving feel particularly sluggish or slow? If it does, it may indicate that the turbocharger is failing or have failed. Keep in mind that modified and unmodified cars will have variations in performance.
  • If the boost pressure comes on late – The Mégane RS Mk3 doesn’t have too much turbo lag, so if the boost comes on really late there is almost certainly some sort of issue. s
  • Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL)/Check Engine Warning (CEL) or and fault codes – A Check Engine Warning Light or fault codes could be caused by turbo issues or some other sort of problem. Use an OBDII scanner if available to read the codes or take the car to a Renault specialist or mechanic for diagnosis.

The issues listed above may also be the result of another problem as well, so keep that in mind.

Engine Rebuilds and Replacements on a Mégane RS Mk3

Some buyers may be hesitant about purchasing a used vehicle with a rebuilt or replaced engine, but as long as the work was carried out by a competent Renault specialist or mechanic with experience with the Mégane RS Mk3, it should not be an issue.

We prefer rebuilds as there is a greater chance of knowing the engine’s history. A replacement engine could have come from any Mégane RS Mk3, but a new replacement from Renault would be preferable to a rebuild.

Be cautious of home rebuilds and replacements as while there are some extremely component home mechanics, there are plenty that don’t have the necessary skills and knowledge for such an involved job. If the replacement or rebuild was done by a garage warrior, try to find out what they have worked on in the past to gauge their experience (did they used to work for Renault as a mechanic/service technician, etc.)

If the work was done by a business/specialist, research who did the work and check for reviews. If the reviews are very poor we would probably pass on the vehicle.

We haven’t heard of any radical engine swaps on these cars, but in the unlikely even you do come across one we would probably pass on the vehicle. This is because they are more likely to be problematic and you could wind up buying somebody else’s unfinished project.

Additionally, another thing we suggest is that you avoid fresh rebuilds or engine swaps with only a few hundred miles on them. A Mégane RS Mk3 that has travelled 10,000 km (6,200 miles) on a rebuild or replacement is more of a known quantity than one that has only travelled a short distance since the work was carried out.

Compression/Leakdown Test

If possible, it can be a good idea to get a compression test done on the vehicle before purchase. These sorts of tests can help identify if there is a potential issue with the engine, but it probably won’t help you determine the exact cause of the problem. If the owner is unwilling to allow a compression test, it may be a sign that they are trying to cover something up.

Some sellers may have a compression test done and include the results in the listing. The most important thing to check is that the results are roughly consistent (within about 10% of each other) and if there are any big discrepancies it indicates an issue.

Transmission & Differential

Credit: Renault

Like the engine, the manual transmission fitted to the 2010 to 2016 Renault Mégane RS tends to be pretty bullet proof as long as it is maintained correctly (maintained correctly being the key point here).

One of the most common problems with the transmission is the upper gearbox mount. There are really two problems here, one is the OEM mount for the 250 and early 265 models, and the other is the very weak bolt that is used.

On 250 and early 265 models it is recommended that you replace the mount with the one from the more powerful 275 RS and later 265 (part number for the mount is 112212065R, while the bracket it sits in is 112535475R). This is because the 275’s mount is a revised unit that is believed to be better. However, the new mount by itself is not sufficient, so it is recommended that you replace the original bolt with a beefed up M12 X 1.5 one or a high tensile M10 bolt if you don’t want to drill out the mount.

If there is a problem with the gearbox mount you may notice issues when shifting and/or clonking when coming on and off the throttle.

Don’t forget to check how the transmission shifts. Many owners seem to experience difficulty selecting first and sometimes second when the ambient temperature is cold, and the car is first started. This should soon go away and shifting should become easier. If shifting is still very tight and difficult it could be something like incorrectly adjusted gear linkages or something more serious.

Worn synchros are a possibility, especially as these cars promote enthusiastic driving and are starting to get a bit older. Grinding and graunching between shifts is typically a sign of this problem, along with difficulty in getting into gear.

Another thing to watch out for is if the transmission pops out of gear or won’t go into a gear at all (going from 6th to 5th for example). If you notice this problem we would probably pass on the Mégane RS Mk3 as you could be looking at some seriously expensive repairs (could be down to a cheaper issue, but we don’t think it is worth the risk unless you can either get the car at a great price or can confirm it is a less serious problem).

If you notice any strange whining noises it is probably the diff and gearbox bearings. This is usually most apparent in sixth gear and while some owners have had luck temporarily fixing the problem with a fluid change, a rebuild or replacement is really what is needed top stop the noise. This thread on has quite a bit more info on this problem, so we suggest you check it out.

Lastly, check when the transmission oil has been changed. There are two main service intervals for Mégane RS III, Service A and Service B. Service A is essentially the engine oil, filter, etc., while Service B adds the transmission fluid and should be done every second service, usually around the 30,000 to 40,000 km mark (19,000 to 25,000 miles). One thing to be aware of is that Cup models use a slightly different oil in the gearbox due to the limited-slip differential (same goes for other LSD equipped cars).

Clutch & Flywheel

Quite a few owners have reported failing clutch slave cylinders on their 2010 to 2016 RS Méganes. If this has happened you may notice a spongy feeling pedal, an excessively early bite point, and the pedal may even stick to the floor when pressed. Unfortunately, replacing the slave cylinder can be quite expensive, so watch out for this problem. Less severe causes of this problem include the pipe to the slave cylinder and the clutch pedal spring.

It is often recommended that you replace the clutch and flywheel as well if you need to do the slave cylinder. This is because it is a labour-intensive job and it will save money in the long run to do them all at once.

If the dual-mass flywheel has gone bad, you may notice strange vibration and rattles, rumbling noises when changing gear and possibly even shuddering when pulling away from the lights. As mentioned, you may as well do the clutch and slave cylinder if the flywheel has to be done. If the flywheel has been done on the Mégane RS Mk3 you are looking at, try to find out what the replacement part was. Single mass flywheels are known to be terrible on these cars, but some people have fitted them.

If the clutch, flywheel and slave cylinder do need to be replaced (clutch often needs to be done around the 130,000 km or 80,000 mile mark), get a good discount if you still want to purchase the car as it is an expensive job. Below we have listed some checks to go through when testing the clutch.

Clutch Engagement – The first step is to make sure the engagement is good. To do this put the Mégane RS Mk3 you are inspecting into gear on a level surface and let the clutch out slowly. If the bite point is closer to the floor then there is a problem (slave cylinder, etc.)

Clutch Slippage – The best way to test for this problem is to shift into a gear that is too high for the speed you are going. You should notice that the engine bogs down a bit (don’t do this on a regular basis). The next thing to do is to accelerate. If you notice that the tachometer goes up out of relation to the speedometer and/or you notice jerkiness it suggests that the clutch is slipping.

Clutch Drag – Get the Mégane RS Mk3 on a flat surface and press the clutch pedal to the floor (do this while you are stationary). Rev the car hard (once it is warm) and see If it moves. If the car does move, the clutch is not disengaging when you shift and parts will wear prematurely.

Clutch Shudder – This is usually noticeable when you accelerate from a stop. A small amount is perfectly normal, but an excessive amount is a sign that the release bearings need to be lubricated or that the flywheel has gone bad.

Body and Exterior

Credit: Renault

Bodywork issues can be expensive to fix, so keep an eye out for the following problems on any Renault Mégane RS Mk3 you go to look at.

Accident Damage

Crash damage is always something to watch out for, especially on cars like the Mégane RS that promote spirited driving. Below we have listed some things to watch out for that may indicate that the Renault Mégane RS you are looking at has been in an accident and/or repaired:

  • Misaligned panels or large panel gaps – All jokes aside about the build quality of French cars, modern ones tend to be very well built, so if you see any misaligned gaps, it could indicate that the vehicle has been in an accident. Check the panel alignment of the bonnet/hood, doors, bumpers, and boot/trunk. Uneven panel gaps on one side may often indicate that some sort of damage has occurred.
  • Doors that drop or don’t close properly – Have a good look at the doors as if they are loose or difficult to open/close, it could be a sign of an accident. Additionally, if the doors drop when opened there is some sort of issue that needs to be investigated further.
  • Inconsistencies such as waving, rippling or different coloured panels – Look for any signs of a respray, which could indicate previous accident damage or some other sort of bodywork problem. It is important to note that Renault’s current build quality is generally high, so this would likely be a result of a respray rather than a factory issue. However, it is possible that it could also be due to paint fade or something like stone chips (especially around the front as many dealers will get the front touched up prior to a sale).
  • If the bonnet/hood looks like it is popped when it is not – This could definitely be a sign of accident damage on the Renault Mégane you are inspecting (even a light knock can cause this problem).
  • Damage to the mounting supports for the headlights or surrounds of the taillights – This can be very difficult to fix on any car and is a good place to check for any accident damage.
  • Bent or broken parts underneath the car – While checking the bottom of the car, ensure that everything is properly aligned. Inspect the suspension and steering components as well. If there are discrepancies in the parts on one side compared to the other, or if they appear much newer, it could indicate that the Mégane RS Mk3 has been in a previous accident.
  • Incorrectly fitting wheel arch liners – This is a common problem on cars that have been in an accident.
  • Rust in strange locations – Can be a sign of accident damage.
  • Paint runs or overspray – It is highly unlikely that paint mismatches on a Mégane RS are the result of a factory issue. They are far more likely to be down to a respray. As we mentioned just above, keep in mind that some dealers may perform a respray on the front of the car to address stone chips, which does not necessarily mean that the car has had significant damage.
  • Missing badges or trim – Could be due to repair work (body shop couldn’t find replacements) or a number of other things (stolen, etc.).

Be thorough in your inspection of the Renault Mégane RS and ask plenty of questions to the seller, as they may try to conceal or downplay any accident damage.

If it is discovered that the Mégane RS was involved in an accident, try to determine the severity of the incident. Minor to moderate damage that has been properly repaired by a skilled body shop is generally acceptable. However, if the Renault Mégane RS has been involved in a severe accident and received significant damage, it is likely best to avoid purchasing it.

If the seller is unable to provide information about any accident or damage, it is possible that it occurred while the car was owned by a previous person.


Even though rust doesn’t appear to be much of an issue on the Renault Megane RS Mk3, it is still important to check for it thoroughly (especially as it may indicate past accident damage). Inspect as much of the body as possible, paying close attention to the wheel arches and wells, sills, underside of the car, around the tailgate and inside the trunk. Keep in mind that if rust is present, it may be more severe than it appears on the surface.

Factors That Can Make Rust More Likely on a Mégane RS Mk3

  • The vehicle has spent time in countries or areas with salted roads (UK, Parts of North America, etc.)
  • Car has spent time in countries or areas with very harsh winters
  • Vehicle is often parked or stored near the sea for prolonged periods
  • Always kept outside (never garaged)
  • Accident damage (stone chips or more significant damage)
  • Rubbing body parts
  • Old or no underseal

It can be a good idea to ask the seller if rust protection has been applied at regular intervals. This is less of a concern in countries that don’t use salt on their roads, but if you are in a place like the UK it can go along way to helping prevent corrosion on the underside of the car.

Be cautious of black rubber undercoating as rust can often form underneath it. Additionally, some dishonest sellers may apply it prior to sale to conceal existing rust. Oily/wax-based undercoating is a better option as it allows you to see the original condition of the frame.

Another thing to ask the seller is if they regular wash the underbody during winter if you live in a country with salted roads. Cleaning the underside of the car can prevent rust formation on the frame/undercarriage and if the seller has done it, it indicates they likely care about preventative maintenance.

Looking for Rust Repairs

It is important not only to look for current rust, but also to keep an eye out for signs of past rust repair (mismatched paint, paint overspray etc.). Be aware of any areas that may have been repainted or cut out and replaced. Also, review the service history and ask the owner, but keep in mind that the owner may not be completely honest about the car’s history.

Use a magnet on steel sections of the car (cover it with a cloth so you don’t damage the paintwork) or a coating gauge thickness tool to find any areas that may have been repaired.

Suspension and Steering

Credit: Renault

The suspension and steering components are two of the main areas where quite a few owners have reported reliability issues with their RS Mk3s. The main problems are the swivel joints (ball joints) and lower arm bushes. These tend to go around the 100,000 km (62,000 mile) mark, and unfortunately Renault dealers and service centres tend to say that you have to replace the complete hub to fix the swivel joint problem. This of course comes at a significant cost (can be into four figures for just one side), but it is possible to replace just the joint for a much lower price at some third party service centres.

If the ball swivel joints have gone bad you may notice the following symptoms:

  • Knock or creak from the front suspension
  • Excessive play in the bottom ball joint
  • Squeaky steering when making turns

Top mounts are another fairly common failure item. If they have gone bad you may noticea thumping or knocking sound when turning sharply.

Refreshing the suspension is something that will eventually need to be done on these cars, especially once they start getting above around 110,000 km (70,000 miles). user, 9rumpy, has a good list of parts needed for this job, so we suggest that you check it out here. If the Mégane RS Mk3 you are looking at is getting up there in terms of mileage, we would definitely factor a suspension refresh into the price.

Below we have put together a bit of a checklist for the steering and suspension:

  • Excessive Rear-end squat during acceleration
  • Tipping during cornering
  • High speed instability
  • Delayed or longer stopping distances
  • Dipping and swerving when the brakes are applied
  • Uneven tyre wear
  • Excessive bounce after hitting a bump or when pushing down on the suspension
  • Leaking fluid on the exterior of the shock/strut Sagging or uneven suspension
  • Knocking, clunking or creaking sounds during a test drive – as mentioned this is probably the front ball joints
  • Rattles – drive over some bumps – there should be no noise from the suspension components (however, you may hear some rattles from something in the cabin)
  • Squeaky steering when making turns – usually the swivel joints
  • Clicking sounds (especially at full lock) – usually a bad CV joint. However, clicking sounds may also indicate something like a bad wheel bearing as well

Don’t forget to inspect as many of the suspension and steering components as possible.  Use a torch/flashlight and a mirror to get a good view of hard to see areas. If the components are different or much newer on one side than the other it could indicate that the vehicle has been in an accident.

Check the Wheel Alignment

When test driving a Renault Mégane RS Mk3, it’s essential to pay attention to the wheel alignment. Take the car for a test drive on a level and straight road to evaluate if it drifts to the right or left. Poor alignment can result in excessive tire wear, which can be costly in the long run, and can also affect the car’s driving experience, and safety.

If the wheel alignment is significantly off, it might indicate that the previous owner didn’t take proper care of the vehicle, or that there are underlying issues with the suspension or steering, or even accident damage. In most cases, a simple realignment can solve the problem, but in some cases, it could be an indication of more severe problems.


Credit: Renault

It is a good idea to inspect the condition of the wheels. Damage to the wheels can be costly to repair and may indicate careless driving from the current owner or any previous owner. While some minor curb damage is quite normal for a car that has been driven regularly, if the Mégane RS Mk3 has low mileage and has been kept in a garage, we would be a bit more concerned if it has lots of curb damage.

Additionally, inspect the wheels for any dents, cracks, or buckling, as these problems may mean that they need to be replaced (at significant expense).

If the car has aftermarket wheels, make sure they are the right size and fit properly. Larger aftermarket wheels may affect the car’s ride quality and increase the risk of curbing. If the Mégane RS Mk3 has aftermarket wheels, ask the owner to see if they still have the original wheels, as they can add value to the car. If the original wheels are not available, try to negotiate a discount on the price.

Some owners claim the larger 19-inch wheels reduce cornering performance, but if they do it really isn’t noticeably, so we wouldn’t put too much thought into this.


Good tyres can be expensive and RS Mk3s are sensitive to what is used on them, so check for the following issues:

  • Amount of tread – If there is minimal tread left try to get a discount as you will need to get the tyres replaced in the near future. The Mégane RS likes to chew through front tyres, so they are likely to be the biggest problem area.
  • Uneven wear – Wear should be even between the right and left tyres on the Mégane RS Mk3. Additionally, make sure wear is even across the tyre itself.
  • Brand – They should be from a good or well-reviewed brand – if they are from a poorly reviewed brand it suggests that the owner has cheaped out on maintenance.
  • Same tyre – In terms of tyre make, type and tread pattern on each axle (preferably on all four wheels) – mismatched tyres can lead to poor handling performance, increased wear and may even be dangerous.
  • Pressure – It can be a good idea to check tyre pressures when conducting an inspection. If the tyre pressures are wrong it can cause the car to pull to the left or right during acceleration. Incorrect tyre pressures can also lead to increased wear and fuel consumption as well.


Credit: Renault

The brakes tend to be pretty reliable on these cars, but it is a good idea to check how much life the pads have as replacing all four corners with good ones can be pricey (same goes for the discs).

When test-driving a Mégane RS Mk3, be on the lookout for any shuddering or shaking through the steering wheel. This could indicate that the discs are warped, which is often more of an issue on cars that are tracked and driven hard regularly.

It is a good idea to test the brakes under both light and heavy braking conditions, at both high and low speeds. The brakes should feel firm and responsive, and any sponginess could be a sign of a problem. Listen for any squealing, rumbling or clunking noises when braking, as this could indicate worn pads or disc issues. Also, ensure the handbrake functions properly and test it on a steep incline if possible.

Some people with RHD Méganes complain of a rattle from the brake pedal. This is usually down to the conversion links that Renault used as the car was originally designed as a LHD vehicle. There isn’t really a solution for this, but it is something to be aware of.

Seized calipers are another thing to watch out for, especially at the rear. If one or more calipers have seized, the car may pull to one side, feel like it is low on power, and the brakes may get extremely hot and produce a distinctive acrid smell or even smoke. In some cases, the car may not want to move at all or produce a loud thud-like noise when pulling away. Pinkish coloured discs can be another sign that the calipers have seized as well.

Like with the suspension and steering components, remember to visually inspect as many of the brake parts as you can get a look at.  If the pads and discs need to be replaced anytime soon make sure you get a discount on the vehicle or make the seller replace them for you. Also check to see if the brake fluid has been replaced at regular intervals.


Credit: Renault

There isn’t too much to be worried about here as the interior on these cars tends to be very durable. Some owners complain that the interior on the 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS is a bit basic and impractical (lack of good cupholders, etc.), but then again, you are really buying one of these cars for their fantastic performance capabilities in a hot hatch form.

If you are looking for an everyday car that is a bit more comfortable, it is often recommended that you go with one that has the standard, non-Recaro seats. Mégane RS Mk3s with Recaro seats also command a higher price, so keep that in mind.

When it comes to wear and tear, the bolsters on both the leather and fabric Recaro seats often causes issues. Other seat options can experience wear and problems as well, but they tend to be a bit more durable. If the seats move during acceleration or braking it is incredibly dangerous and will be an MOT/WOF failure.

Another thing to check is the door handles. A few owners have complained of them breaking on the inside when they pull the door shut. Renault charges a lot for the parts to fix this problem, but there are third-party vendors who can supply the door handle for a much lower cost.

When inspecting the interior of a Mégane RS, be sure to check for any signs of dampness or leaks. Water can cause damage to the electronics and lead to unpleasant odours. Check the carpets and the rest of the cabin for any signs of moisture. If you notice water residue on the bottom of the floor mats, it could be a sign of a past or present leak. It is unlikely, but a leak from an unusual location may also indicate that the car has been in an accident.

Another thing to do is to pay close attention to the headlining above the driver’s seat. While smoking is less popular than it used to be, if the headlining appears discoloured, it may be an indication that the car has been owned by a smoker.

Electronics and Other Things

Credit: Renault

One of the biggest things to watch out for here is the dashboard screen/infotainment system. While these don’t fail that often, they can be quite expensive to replace or fix if something does go wrong. Some owners also complain that the software is a bit glitchy, so check if things like “Sport Mode” display correctly when the car is in that mode and make sure RS Monitor reads correctly if the car has it.

Quite a few owners have reported that the “check ABS” and “check ESP” warning lights have illuminated on their cars. Unfortunately, it can be quite hard to nail down what exactly is causing this. Some owners have found replacing the ABS pump/module sorts the problem (at great expense), but others report the warning is still present after spending the money on the repair. Some other causes could be something simple like low brake fluid, a cracked ABS ring, speed sensor failure, out of alignment steering wheel angle and more. As there are quite a few possible reasons for this problem, we would probably recommend getting the car properly checked out if you still want to purchase it.

Credit: Renault

Verify that the owner still possesses the original keys that came with the vehicle when it was new. If they have lost a key it can be quite expensive to replace it. However, you can also use this to negotiate a better price. Furthermore, even if the owner has the keys, ensure that they function properly.

Absence of warning lights during startup may indicate a problem or that they have even been disconnected for some reason. On the other hand, if they remain illuminated, further investigation is required and it may be necessary to take the car to a Renault specialist to determine the cause of the warning light before making a purchase. An OBD2 scanner is also something we recommend that you take to any inspection of a Mégane RS Mk3 as they can help you determine the cause of a warning light.

Apart from the above, do a general check of the electrical components, locks, etc. Make sure the front and back lights work as intended and that there are no problems with the speakers.

General Car Buying Advice for a Renault Mégane RS Mk3

Credit: Renault

How to Get the Best Deal on a Mégane RS III

When considering purchasing a Mégane RS, whether from a dealership or a private seller, it is important to remember that knowledge is power. Being well-informed about the car buying process can help you save money and make a more informed decision.

Research heavily – Before beginning your search for a Renault Mégane RS Mk3, it’s a good idea to determine your preferred specifications and condition. Are you looking for a low-mileage, recent year Trophy 275, or would you be open to an earlier 250 model with more miles on it?

Shop around – It is always best to shop around a bit before you make a purchase. Renault sold a reasonable amount of these cars in the markets they sold them in and there are still plenty out there today. Don’t limit yourself to one seller, dealer, area or auction platform, but do understand if you want a specific spec/trim level you may have to wait a bit for the perfect one to pop up.

Go look at and test drive multiple Renault Mégane RS Mk3s if possible – While good RS Mk3s will get more difficult to find as time goes on, It is a good idea to test drive as many cars as possible This will help you determine what makes a good and what makes a bad Mégane RS 250, 265 or 275.

Adjust your attitude – Avoid impulsive buying decisions when searching for a 2010-2016 Renault Mégane RS. Being in a rush to purchase a car increases the likelihood of getting ripped off. Take your time evaluating potential RS Mk3s and only consider cars that show promise, unless you’re specifically looking for a project vehicle.

Use any issues with the car to your advantage – Pay attention to any issues or wear and tear. Use these problems to negotiate a lower price during the purchase, mentioning specific repairs or replacements that need to be done such as new tyres or brake pads.

Don’t trust the owner completely – It is important to keep in mind that not all sellers are completely honest about the condition of their vehicle. While some may be truthful, others may exaggerate or omit certain issues with their Renault Mégane in order to make a quick sale. It is essential to conduct a thorough inspection of the car and verify the information provided by the owner, rather than relying solely on their word.

Go between sellers/dealers – If you are looking at multiple Renault Mégane RS Mk3s, let the owner/seller know. This way they will know that you have other options and they may try to undercut the price.

Be prepared to walk away – If you are not happy with the deal, simply walk away. You may miss out on the car or the seller may get back to you with a better offer.

Mileage vs Condition  

When looking at any used car, we always recommend that you prioritise the condition of a vehicle over its mileage. While low mileage is a great selling point and can be good, it can also be a bad thing as well. Short distance trips do not allow the engine to warm up properly, which can lead to increased component wear and reduced engine life.

Additionally, rubber seals and plastic parts will deteriorate over time, regardless of mileage, and cars that are not used regularly may be more susceptible to rust and electronic failures. Therefore, it’s important to thoroughly inspect the vehicle and take its condition into account before making a purchase.

Service History and Other Documentation 

Credit: Renault

It is incredibly important to check any vehicle’s service history and any additional paperwork that goes along with it. While the servicing doesn’t need to be done at a dealer, it should be carried out by a competent Renault specialist or mechanic (especially for major repair work). Home mechanic work is okay, but it is much harder to gauge the competence of a home mechanic than checking reviews for established businesses.

The service history will give you a good idea of how the Mégane RS Mk3 you are inspecting has been maintained. In addition to this, receipts and paperwork for modifications (if the car has any) can help you determine whether they have been done by an experienced tuner or a bad one.  

If the owner can’t or won’t let you see the service history, you should probably pass on the vehicle. A complete service history will only add value to any vehicle your purchase and will make it easier to sell the car in the future.  

Additionally, you can check websites such as CarFax (USA) and CarJam (NZ) for more information about the car you are thinking of purchasing. These sort of websites can be incredibly useful, but there is usually a cost associated with them. 

Questions That You Should Ask the Seller/Owner  

  • How often do you drive the car? 
  • When was the last service and who was it serviced by? 
  • How much oil does it use? 
  • What oil do you use in the car? 
  • What parts have been replaced?
  • When were the coils, spark plugs, leads changed?
  • What’s the compression like?
  • What modifications have been made to the vehicle? 
  • Has the vehicle overheated at any point or has the head gasket failed? 
  • Has the car been in any major or minor accidents? Is so, what repairs were made? 
  • Is there any money owing on the car? 
  • Have you got any information on the previous owners and how they treated the vehicle? 
  • How are the speakers
  • Is there any rust? 
  • Has rust been removed at any point? 
  • When were the brake pads replaced and have the calipers seized at any point in time? 
  • Where do you store/park the car usually? 

There are loads more questions you can ask the seller, but we feel these are some of the most important. 

Things That Would Make Us Walk Away from a 2010 to 2016 Mégane RS

Here are some things that would make as walk away from one of these cars. While you may be happy with a vehicle with these problems, we are not.  

  • Overheating problems or blown head gasket
  • Significant Crash Damage or poorly repaired roof 
  • Money owing on the car  
  • Stanced  
  • Modifications with no paperwork or carried out by a poorly reviewed tuner  
  • Excessive amounts of power
  • Bad compression 
  • Bad resprays 
  • Significant rust problems  
  • Engine swaps with non-standard engines  
  • Significant track use (although tracked cars are often maintained well, so this can be argued the other way)
  • Major engine or transmission issues  
  • Owner who is not forthcoming with information (could be trying to hide something) 

Notes on the Owner  

The owner is one of the most important things to think about when viewing any vehicle. You need to ask them plenty of questions when inspecting their Mégane RS Mk3 (however, don’t trust their answers completely). Remember, it is your problem if you wind up buying an absolute lemon. Here are some things to watch out for.  

  • How long have they owned the vehicle? If it is less than 6 months it tends to suggest that the car needs major work done to it that they can’t afford. It also could be a sign that they deal cars as well. 
  • Do they thrash the car when it is cold or continually launch the vehicle? If so, you are better to walk away. 
  • Why are they selling the vehicle? Could be a genuine reason or they may be trying to offload their problem onto an unsuspecting buyer. 
  • What sort of area do they live in? Is it a good area or a complete dump? 
  • How do they respond when you ask them simple questions? 
  • Do they know anything about the Renault Mégane RS and the model they are selling (Cup vs standard, etc.)
  • What can they tell you about previous owners? 
  • Do they have lots of cars on their drive? If they do it may mean they are a dealer. 
  • What is their reaction when you ask them about money owing on the car? Tell them you are going to do a check and see how they respond. 
  • What is their reaction to you asking for details for HPi check?  
  • How do they react if you ask to do a compression test on the vehicle?
  • How do they respond when you ask them to show you the service history and paperwork for the car? 

If you get a bad feeling about the owner, you are better off moving onto another Mégane RS.

2010 to 2016 Renault Mégane RS Buyer’s Guide Conclusion

Credit: Renault

The Mk3 Mégane RS was and still is one of the best hot hatches every made. It offers excellent performance, especially in higher powered forms, and is regarded as quite reliable by most owners. They aren’t the most practical cars, but look after them well and they should provide plenty of miles of trouble free motoring.

If you have any additional information you feel should be included, let us know in the comments below.

References – The Mégane III R.S.: a genuine success storysport cars – Press release – The Mégane III R.S.: a genuine success story – (

Top Gear Team (04/03/2009) – Renault Megane RS news – Geneva show: Renault Megane RS – 2009  Renault Megane RS news – Geneva show: Renault Megane RS – 2009 | Top Gear

Jonathon Ramsey (19/10/2009) – Renault Mégane Renaultsport 250 drops on unsuspecting Brits – Renault Mégane Renaultsport 250 drops on unsuspecting Brits – Autoblog

Noah Joseph (04/03/2009) – Geneva 2009: Renault Megane RS – libert, galit, velocit [w/VIDEO] – Geneva 2009: Renault Megane RS – libert, galit, velocit [w/VIDEO] – Autoblog

Cars UK (15/09/2009) – Megane Renaultsport 250 launches – Megane Renaultsport 250 launches (

George Skentzos (03/03/2009) – 2009 Renault Mégane RS 250 at Geneva – 2009 Renault Mégane RS 250 at Geneva – Drive

Jethro Bovingdon (20/06/2011) – Renault Megane Renaultsport 250 (2010) long-term test review – Renault Megane Renaultsport 250 (2010) long-term test review | CAR Magazine

Mark Tisshaw (10/06/2011) – RS Megane 265 Trophy revealed – RS Megane 265 Trophy revealed | Autocar

Chris Riley (12/11/2012) – Renault Megane RS265 Trophy 2012 review – Renault Megane RS265 Trophy 2012 review | CarsGuide

Renault (23/08/2012) – THE NEW MEGANE R.S. 265: THE BEST JUST GOT BETTER – extension://bfdogplmndidlpjfhoijckpakkdjkkil/pdf/viewer.html?

Matt Robinson – The Renault Sport Megane RB8 Is A Special Edition Hot Hatch You Forgot About – The Renault Sport Megane RB8 Is A Special Edition Hot Hatch You Forgot About (

Jonathon Ramsey (21/05/2013) – The Renault Sport Megane RB8 Is A Special Edition Hot Hatch You Forgot About –Renault and Red Bull Racing team up for awesome sports Megane [w/video] – Autoblog

Anjan Ravi (06/09/2013) – 2014 Renault Megane Facelift revealed ahead of its Frankfurt debut – 2014 Renault Megane Facelift revealed ahead of Frankfurt (

Sam Philip (03/03/2014) – Seat Leon Cupra sets Nurburgring record – Seat Leon Cupra sets Nurburgring record | Top Gear

Renault Group (16/06/2014) – 7’54”36 new lap record at the Nurburgring for Megane R.S. 275 Trophy-R – 7’54”36 new lap record at the Nurburgring for Megane R.S. 275 Trophy-R – Renault Group


Renault Group – Renault Sport Megane RS 265 – buying a rs250 |

Dinn (09/08/2014) – Service schedule for 250/265 – Service schedule for 250/265 |

Renault – Malaysia Megane RS Clio RS Periodic Maintenance Service -extension://bfdogplmndidlpjfhoijckpakkdjkkil/pdf/viewer.html? Engine

Bobsan (19/12/2016) – Cambelt change RS 250 – 2010 – Cambelt change RS 250 – 2010 |

APMotorsport – Megane 3 RS Cambelt Timing Belt Kit (250/265/275) – Megane 3 RS Cambelt Timing Belt Kit (250/265/275) | APMOTORSPORT

Charli Howard (01/05/2018) – Correct coolant? – 250 – Correct coolant? |

James B (04/04/2014) – Cambelt Whine – 250 – Cambelt Whine |

Dale.groves (09/05/2016) – Cambelt Whine – Definitive 250 gearbox mount solution? |

Semtex (10/01/2017) – WTF is this noise? – 250 – WTF is this noise? |


  • Ben

    From his early days playing the original Gran Turismo and with his Hot Wheels car set, Ben has had a long interest in all things automotive. His first foray into the world of automotive journalism was way back in 2009 and since then he has only grown more interested in the industry. Ben also runs and heads up the video production side of Garage Dreams, focusing on small informative documentaries about some of the world's most legendary cars.

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