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.