More potent front-wheel-drive Golf GTI has gone from concept to production; can hit a derestricted 162mph
Tom Morgan, deputy digital editor
17 January 2019

Volkswagen has officially announced the Golf GTI TCR, a brawny 286bhp version of the seventh-generation Golf GTI built to celebrate the brand's participation in touring car racing.

The TCR is set to become the fastest front-wheel-drive Golf the firm has released to date, with an option to raise the top speed from 155mph to 162mph. The 0-62mph sprint is dispatched in 5.6sec, 0.3sec faster than the hardcore Golf GTI Clubsport S.

It uses the same turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine as the earlier Golf GTI Clubsport, with 286bhp at 5000rpm in overboost mode, when turbo boost pressure is raised from 1.9 to 2.1bar for periods of up to 10 seconds. During that time, the engine develops 44bhp more than the standard Golf GTI's with the optional performance package, while torque remains the same, building to a peak of 272lb ft at 1600-4300rpm. It comes with a petrol particulate filter and is combined with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox and front axle differential lock. There's no option of a manual gearbox.

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The Golf GTI TCR stands out from the standard Golf GTI with a more prominent front splitter, wider side sills, a TCR-specific spoiler and a large full-width diffuser at the rear. Buyers will be able to specify TCR decals over the rear of the sills, a body side foil featuring the honeycomb shape reflected in the design of the grille, and puddle lamps that project a TCR logo to the side of the car when the door is opened. LED headlights come as standard, along with Front Assist automatic emergency braking and an Active Info Display digital instrument cluster.

Inside, the Golf GTI TCR adopts new microfibre upholstery for the sides of the sport seats, door inserts and gear selector glove. The design of the upholstery for the seat centre has been developed specifically for this model, while the flat-bottomed steering wheel and gear selector knob receive a red marker at the 12 o’clock position as a homage to the racing version of the Golf GTI TCR, of which VW Motorsport claims to have delivered up to 100 examples since 2016.

UK prices have yet to be revealed, but in Volkswagen's home territory the TCR will cost €38,950 (£34,500). Buyers will be able to choose from a selection of extras packages, which add sports-tuned rear dampers and Dynamic Chassis Control, the top speed upgrade and 19in alloy wheels on either street or semi-slick tyres.

The Golf GTI TCR was previewed at last year's Wörthersee fan meet in Austria by the TCR Concept, which used the same titanium Akrapovič exhaust system as the four-wheel-drive Golf R. It is currently unknown if the production version does the same.

The TCR was confirmed for production by VW officials at Wörthersee, who suggested volumes will not be restricted, unlike the limited-run Clubsport S.

However, with development of the eighth-generation Golf - planned for introduction in 2019 - already at an advanced stage, the road-going Golf GTI TCR is set for a relatively short production life.

Read more

Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport S review

Race-inspired Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR gets 286bhp

Twin test: Ford Focus RS vs Golf R

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Comments
12

10 May 2018

 Sooner see the Wagon version with 405bhp being offered, fed up with another Gti....!

Peter Cavellini.

10 May 2018

The gti needs more power. It is the only fast petrol VW. Great to see them at least thinking of performance.

11 May 2018
BradP wrote:

The gti needs more power. It is the only fast petrol VW.

You don't count the Golf R as a fast petrol VW?

Is it necessary to have a whole family of GTi in various states of tune, filling every performance niche?

11 May 2018
BradP wrote:

The gti needs more power. It is the only fast petrol VW.

You don't count the Golf R as a fast petrol VW?

Is it necessary to have a whole family of GTi in various states of tune, filling every performance niche?

11 May 2018
abkq wrote:

BradP wrote:

The gti needs more power. It is the only fast petrol VW.

You don't count the Golf R as a fast petrol VW?

Is it necessary to have a whole family of GTi in various states of tune, filling every performance niche?

 

Soory...i meant 2 wheel drive...it needs to keep the fastest 2 wheel drive status

18 January 2019
BradP wrote:

The gti needs more power. It is the only fast petrol VW. Great to see them at least thinking of performance.

It does not need more power. 

11 May 2018

  Having another version of the Gti could dilute the status of VW’s iconic Car, not so long ago Car makers only had one or two performance models, now it seems we need three or four.

Peter Cavellini.

11 May 2018

Had Edition 30 myself, manual with tune (330hp), KW coilovers, Sachs clutch and full exhaust. It was a great car for 3 years and 70000km until I sold it.

BUT, I must say, this TCR is the same dog with different fleas. It should be much more exciting than some 20hp + akra addition (for a price, of course).

I know Porsche has 911 versions of 911, but GTI is not a 911 in any respect.

17 January 2019

But, if you have your head screwed on properly, buy an R for less...

Citroëniste.

17 January 2019
Bob Cholmondeley wrote:

But, if you have your head screwed on properly, buy an R for less...

I hear you. I think Autocar needs to test the Clubsport S against this to really see where improvements have been truly made. The R in DSG form (due to faster changes) is the mecca of fast Golf's from an acceleration perspective, certainly. 

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