With an optional top speed of 260 km/h, the new seventh-generation 286bhp Golf GTI TCR version has been derived from the racing car of the same name, namely the two-time overall winner of the international Touring Car Racing series.
Fitted with highly exclusive equipment as standard and a 7-speed dual clutch gearbox (sadly no manual gearbox is available), this race inspired Golf GTI sports car comes with an immensely powerful 213 kW /290 PS engine and Vmax that can be increased to raise its top speed from 250 to 260 km/h if you so wish. But with a 0 to 62mph time of just 5.6 seconds, you may feel it is quite powerful enough in its standard form.
The car borrows the turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine from the Golf GTI Clubsport, with the turbo boost pressure raised from 1.9 to 2.1bar for short 10 second periods, giving the car an additional 44bhp over the standard GTI.
Standard equipment on the Golf GTI TCR includes a front-axle differential lock to help handle all that extra power, along with perforated brake discs. You also get driving profile selection and premium front sport seats with a new special microfibre/fabric design. The exclusive racing-styled sports steering wheel has its leather specially imprinted (with perforated leather) at the 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock positions as well as with a red mark at the 12 o’clock position.
The car can be distinguished by the standard 18-inch Belvedere forged wheels, or if you prefer, 18-inch Milton Keynes alloy wheels, along with black exterior mirror caps, sill extensions, front splitter, TCR roof spoiler and a diffuser at the rear. LED headlights come as standard on the TCR, as does Front Assist automatic emergency braking and an Active Info Display digital instrument cluster.
You can however customise your new Golf GTI TCR even more, with options such as a new honeycomb décor foil for the side panels, carbon door mirror caps, a black painted roof, plus a number of differently styled 19-inch alloy wheels.
There are two different packages available on the TCR. The first package includes Reifnitz 19-inch rims with 235/35 R 19 tyres, the Vmax upgrade, a sports version of the rear damping system and the DCC adaptive chassis control system. The second package includes Pretoria 19-inch rims with racetrack-ready sports tyres, which are semi-slicks, sized 235/35 R 19, and of course the Vmax upgrade, you also get the sports version of the rear damping and the DCC included.
Prices for the UK have not been confirmed yet, but in Germany it is priced at €38,950 (around £34,500). For more information on the Golf GTI TCR please visit www.volkswagen.co.uk
Simon Burrell is Editor-in-Chief of Our Man Behind The Wheel and Our Man On The Ground Travel and Lifestyle Magazine.
Photographs courtesy of Volkswagen