Hey LaLD! I’m finally back! This semester was a bit of a busy one and, despite me having preemptively photographed plenty of diecast before returning to Uni, I ran out of time to prepare my verbose backgrounds on the cars being presented! So, without further ado, we return to our regularly scheduled programming with two C-segment hot(ish) hatches from France!

Throughout automotive history there have been countless hot B-segment hatches: the 205 GTi, the 5 GT Turbo, the Metro Turbo, the Fiesta XR2, so on and so forth.

Yet, on the other hand, C-segment hot hatches have been less prominent following the mighty Golf GTI that started it all; hot hatches, it seemed, were for the youth to have a laugh in, not for the family man to let his hair down after work.

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Lately, though, that has seen a turnaround. There’s the Golf R, the Focus RS, the Civic Type R, the A 45, and many more hardcore fast family five doors. Just below that, though, lie these: the Peugeot 308 GTi and the Renault Megane GT.

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These certainly compete more in the Golf GTI and Focus ST range yet offer quite a bit more Gallic flair. Less hardcore than the aforementioned “super” hatches, these two have 266 hp and 202 hp, respectively.

That certainly gives the upper hand to the Peugeot right off the bat, but Renault have a stronger reputation for making a good-handling hatch than Peugeot who’s been a bit off their game ever since the 206 GTi.

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Additionally, the Megane GT has a trick up its sleeve with ‘4Control’, Renault’s new active four-wheel steering system that harkens back to the technical complexity of the systems from the eighties.

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Both Peugeot and Renault have come out of their respective styling malaises recently, and these two C-seg hatches clearly demonstrate their new directions, both very different but striking and attractive. Perhaps they’ll be the precursor to a series of Gallic superhatches: the Peugeot 308 R Hybrid and the Megane RS! Happy French Friday, and bon week-end!