UPDATE: A previous version of this article erroneously suggested Renault was aiming for a sub-8-second lap time. Clearly, this was a rather humorous typo, and it's been fixed. Thanks for all who pointed out the mistake in the Comments!

While hybrid hypercars like the Porsche 918 Spyder, McLaren P1 and Ferrari LaFerrari are thrown into the (at least hypothetical) battle for the sub-7-minute Nürburgring lap record, there's another war waging further down the time sheets. That's for the fastest lap clocked around the Nordschleife in a front-wheel-drive production vehicle.

Arguably more relevant to the common (European) man, this war is being waged between the top hot hatches on the Continental market. Seat became the current leader when it clocked a lap time of 7:58.4 in the new Leon Cupra 280, and Honda has made no secret of its intent to take the record with the upcoming Civic Type R. We wouldn't be surprised to see Opel go for it with the Astra OPC Extreme, but before any of these contenders came along, the record rightfully belonged to Renault.

The French automaker set a time of 8:16.9 with the Mégane R26.R back in 2008, then reset the record at 8:07.9 in 2011 with the newer Mégane Trophy. Evidently unhappy to see its bragging rights stolen away by the Spanish (and eyed by the Japanese and Germans), Renaultsport is apparently preparing an even hotter hatch with the explicit aim of setting a sub-8-minute lap time of its own.

Teased with the social media hashtag #Under8, the project is apparently bringing on board the collaboration of Michelin for tires, Akrapovic for the exhaust, Öhlins for the suspension and BRM as official timing partner. Accompanying the image above on Renault Sport's Facebook page just days ago was the caption "two months to go", hinting that the attempt will be made sometime in mid-June.

We'd assume the Mégane will once again serve as the base, and if they want the time to mean anything, it'll have to be offered for sale. Unfortunately since Renault doesn't market in North America it's all rather theoretical to us, but as far as theoretical challenges go, this one's shaping up to be one for the record books.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 23 Comments
      interruptive_cow
      • 8 Months Ago
      So they'll need to go 6,300 mph. Mach 8. Should be achievable with a scramjet. How ambitious of Renault.
      Kumar
      • 8 Months Ago
      6 seconds is nothing. The real question is if it can make the Kessel run in less than 12 parsecs.
      trzjax
      • 8 Months Ago
      8 second car will make GTR look like molasses with its 7min-something run...
      KaiserWilhelm
      • 8 Months Ago
      8 seconds eh?
        hingle_mckringleberry
        • 8 Months Ago
        @KaiserWilhelm
        Apparently so! They even re-stated that in the article itself! I mean, it's not like any normal person with even a minimally functioning brain wouldn't do the same.
          KaiserWilhelm
          • 8 Months Ago
          @hingle_mckringleberry
          I don't even think an F-22 with afterburners on could fly fast enough.
          Tiberius1701
          • 8 Months Ago
          @hingle_mckringleberry
          Maybe he has a defective calendar. He might think it is April 1st.
      BackseatStig
      • 8 Months Ago
      I've heard it's going to have a 5-liter flux capacitor and a turbocharged spoiler.
      Cayman
      • 8 Months Ago
      Sub 8 SECONDS? I'd be interested in seeing that.
      Ron Burgundy
      • 8 Months Ago
      The author clearly had no actual experience or knowledge of the subject matter... repeated use of "seconds" was no typo. Period. And, it made it through a proof read. Noah needs to go write about skateboards or video games... he's out of his league here.
        RetrogradE
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Ron Burgundy
        Nice.
        • 8 Months Ago
        @Ron Burgundy
        [blocked]
      RetrogradE
      • 8 Months Ago
      Sub-8-second lap at the 'Ring? Damn, must be Burt Reynolds or something.
      TruthHertz
      • 8 Months Ago
      Noah, do you proof read the crap you put up?
      Tiberius1701
      • 8 Months Ago
      Warp drive baby.
      chanonissan
      • 8 Months Ago
      The original engine was a nissan bottom half and a renault top half with turbo, What I know for sure the alliance have a new turbo DI 2.0 liter develop by nismo, that push more HP than Nissan V8, called the NR20A, but only races in the GT500, water down the engine and they could have a serious racer. We have already seen renault using the juke 1.6 turbo, we have to wait and see.
        chanonissan
        • 8 Months Ago
        @chanonissan
        anyone want to see the car on the test track here is the link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JaJafmnavy0 renault is going for 7:49 time
      SpikedLemon
      • 8 Months Ago
      The Megane is a sweet car but what do they need to do to it for an 8-second lap?
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