Hottest Mk8 Golf drops all camouflage ahead of its expected UK debut in July
11 February 2020

The new Volkswagen Golf GTI is weeks away from being unveiled, but already attention is turning to the even hotter Golf R variant as it's spotted with no disguise. 

Spy photographers have caught a prototype with no camouflage whatsoever undergoing winter testing near the Arctic Circle. We can see the new model sticks to the formula of its predecessor, with understated performance the order of the day. 

Tell-tale R design cues include quad tailpipes at the rear, an enlarged lower air intake and an R-specific wheel design covering performance brakes with blue-painted callipers. 

Although not yet confirmed, power outputs for all of the hot Mk8 Golf variants (the GTI, GTI TCR, GTD and R) leaked out last month through a slideshow from a brand presentation. 

The slide revealed that the R will put out 329bhp - a 33bhp increase - from a heavily boosted version of the EA888 turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol motor. As before, this will be put through a Haldex-based four-wheel drive system and seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox. A manual isn't expected to be offered.  

Our Verdict

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The new Haldex system is said to be capable of fully variable control constantly altering the drive sent to the front ad rear axles, in combination with Volkswagen's XDS+ electronic differential locks and a stability control system that, insiders claim, will incorporate a drift mode similar to that of the Mercedes-AMG A45

While it's not official yet, Autocar understands that the 2020 Golf R is planned for an unveiling at July's Goodwood Festival of Speed in the UK. What's not yet clear is if a long-rumoured flagship Golf R Plus, expected to produce as much as 400bhp, will be saved for a debut next year or even later.  

Read more

New Volkswagen Golf range to be topped by 400bhp R Plus​

Mk7 Volkswagen Golf R review

Volkswagen Golf R M52 2019 UK review​

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11 February 2020

As different as one tennis ball is from the next.  

12 February 2020
You'd have to be an obsessive conformist without a shred of creativity or individuality, and no respect or care for engineering integrity (vis-a-vs cheating, unreliability, etc) to think this is a viable, let alone preferred, option.

11 February 2020

Seriously, why bother?


I'm sure the numbers will be higher to make you think you're getting some kinda improvement over the old one. Maybe +15Hp if you're lucky. 

11 February 2020

It looks like the designers have pulled off vehicle fraud, by doing a cut-and-shut.   Those extra doors do not work and the front-end design looks dated.  

11 February 2020
That is one ungainly front end. The Mk.7 R looks fantastic, this is a very unfortunate thing indeed.

11 February 2020

I'm sure its very capable, but, as a five door only, you can never get away from the family car look.

11 February 2020

 Is that a Seat Leon from the rear?, and, that front Bumper!?, what were they thinking?, is VW using SEAT parts now?

11 February 2020

Agreed it has too many doors. It also has the wrong gearbox, and its been hit with the ugly stick. It will sell well to those who bought the MK7.


11 February 2020

...the same pictures appear on the websites of several other UK car magazines.

13 February 2020
Damn those headlights ruin anything that could be attractive. So frumpy looking up front. Shame

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