Volk­swa­gen’s hot­ter Golf GTI

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - Motoring -

Volk­swa­gen has pre­pared the ul­ti­mate send off for its cur­rent-gen­er­a­tion Golf GTI hot hatch, with a new flag­ship vari­ant, dubbed TCR, set to be the fastest pro­duc­tion Golf yet, and it could be com­ing to Aus­tralia soon.

Ahead of its full re­veal last week at the an­nual GTI meet­ing in Worthersee, Aus­tria, the GTI TCR was teased in sketch form, com­plete with a few per­for­mance de­tails, such as its 264kmh top speed when the speed lim­iter is re­moved.

This makes the GTI TCR at least 14kmh faster than any other ex­ist­ing GTI vari­ant, as well as the R vari­ants, which are elec­tron­i­cally limited to 250kmh.

When ques­tioned by Goauto if the GTI TCR, which is set to be launched in­ter­na­tion­ally to­wards the end of this year, will make it into Aus­tralian show­rooms, Volk­swa­gen Group Aus­tralia gen­eral man­ager of com­mu­ni­ca­tions Paul Pot­tinger said he would not rule it out.

“We’ve got big plans for the re­main­ing few years of the GTI 7.5 life cy­cle, and we’ll be mak­ing an an­nounce­ment on those in the next cou­ple of weeks,” he said.

“So, we’re very in­ter­ested in it. We’re in­ter­ested in every ver­sion of the GTI from the in­cep­tion of the cur­rent model – it’s an un­fold­ing story. We’ve got a lot to say on that front.”

Based on the Tour­ing Car Rac­ing race­car of the same name, the GTI TCR punches out 213kw of power from 5000 to 6800rpm and 370Nm of torque from 1600 to 4300rpm from its 2.0-litre tur­bocharged four-cylin­der petrol en­gine.

While its out­puts are down 62kw and 50Nm on the race­car’s fig­ures, the GTI TCR matches the Aus­tralian-mar­ket 380Nm Golf R’s peak power and 180kw GTI Per­for­mance Edi­tion 1’s max­i­mum torque fig­ures.

Fur­ther­more, the GTI TCR will match the peak power of the re­tired GTI 40 Years – oth­er­wise known as the GTI Club­sport S over­seas – but fall 10Nm short of its max­i­mum torque. The lat­ter achieved these out­puts when on over­boost and was re­stricted to 500 ex­am­ples when it hit Aus­tralian shores in July 2016.

Its non-over­boost peak out­puts were 195kw and 350Nm.

The front-wheel-drive GTI TCR will be avail­able in five-door form with a stan­dard sev­en­speed DSG dual-clutch au­to­matic trans­mis­sion and front-axle dif­fer­en­tial lock, which ‘are re­spon­si­ble for power trans­mis­sion and ex­cel­lent trac­tion’, ac­cord­ing to the Ger­man car-maker.

The four teaser sketches in­di­cate the GTI TCR will adopt a more ag­gres­sive bodykit, in­clud­ing a mo­tor­sport-in­spired rear dif­fuser, plus newlook al­loy wheels and a low­ered ride height.

Mr Pot­tinger added the re­cently-an­nounced GTI Per­for­mance Edi­tion 2 re­mains on track for a limited-run re­lease later this year.

“A 180kw GTI, in one form or an­other, with seven-speed DSG and a me­chan­i­cal dif­fer­en­tial – that’s ab­so­lutely on the cards,” he said.

“I can tell you it won’t be a three-door, but our plans for that and the ex­tent of that car may well be greater than we orig­i­nally en­vis­aged.”

The three-door GTI Per­for­mance Edi­tion 1 was priced from $47,990 be­fore on-road costs when it launched in Au­gust last year, with the GTI Per­for­mance Edi­tion 2 ex­pected to wear a sim­i­lar pric­etag when it ar­rives in Aus­tralia.

Sales of the Golf have im­proved con­sid­er­ably this year, with 6211 ex­am­ples sold to the end of April, rep­re­sent­ing a 19.1 per­cent in­crease over the 5214 de­liv­er­ies made dur­ing the same pe­riod in 2017.

This ef­fort places the Volk­swa­gen fourth in the sub-$40,000 small-car seg­ment this year, trail­ing the Toy­ota Corolla with 12,243 units, Mazda3, 11,117, and Hyundai i30, 8654, but ahead of Kia Cer­ato, 5904 and Honda Civic, 4966, among oth­ers.

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