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Renaultsport diesel due in 2007

Renault’s UK dealers, who sell the highest volume of Renaultsport derivatives in any market, will benefit from the first diesel model to carry the performance badge early next year.

The Mégane Renaultsport 175dCi is due in showrooms in spring 2007 following a likely Geneva motor show debut in March.

Priced between £18,500 and £20,000 it will be capable of 140mph, but also offer 45mpg and a sub 160g/km CO2 rating, providing particular scope for user chooser fleet sales.

Embodying the Dieppe-based Renaultsport philosophy of stripping weight out of mainstream models and fitting aerodynamic bodyshells, the 175bhp Mégane, fitted with a close ratio gearbox, will accelerate to 62mph in around 7.5 secs.

Renault’s 270 UK outlets sell around 25% of Renaultsport production and Nick Tame, national fleet sales manager, says: “If or when we get an incremental vehicle like that it will be very welcome as a combination of driver appeal, image and tax efficiency.”

Later this year Renault retailers will offer another performance Clio, with the GT-badged 2.0-litre 140hp petrol competing against Fiesta ST and Polo GTI.

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