2020 VW Golf GTI: engine and powertrain:
In a reversal of original plans, Wolfsburg as decided not to make a more radical switch to hybrid power. Instead, the eighth-generation Golf GTI is set to stick with much of the hardware that has made the seventh-generation model such a success, both critically and commercially.
That means an updated version of the Audi-developed EA888 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine used in the existing Mk7 Golf GTI. Again, like the current car, it will be offered with two power outputs: a standard output of around 252bhp and a more powerful 286bhp model badged TCR, which will replace the current Performance version of the GTI.
The TCR badge has been used for the first time on a run-out version of the current Mk7 Golf GTI and is designed to improve the link between the model and the firm’s GTI TCR racing car.
An increase in torque beyond the 258lb ft and 273lb ft of today’s two versions of the GTI is claimed to establish new levels of performance. In the case of the higher-spec model, it is said the 0-62mph time will be less than 6.0sec and the top speed 155mph. Gearbox choices will include carry-over versions of today’s six-speed manual and seven-speed dual-clutch items.
As recently as last October, VW had planned to switch the Golf GTI to mild-hybrid power as the performance flagship of a new range of IQ-badged petrol-electric mild-hybrid models.
That system is also based around the EA888 engine, and is due to be revealed this year. However, it will not now be used on the Golf GTI, under the instruction of VW Group chairman Herbert Diess, who reversed the decision of his predecessor Matthias Müller.
The transversely mounted 2.0-litre four-cylinder powerplant will be mated to an electric motor and 48V electrical architecture. It is a set-up VW plans to mirror on the smaller 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine and 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesel units to be used by the next Golf, due to receive a public debut towards the end of this year after being delayed from an expected Frankfurt debut in September.
The original plan had been to improve the Golf GTI’s low-end response with electric boosting. Additionally, the technology was to bring a coasting function that idles the engine on a trailing throttle and a recuperation system that harvests kinetic energy during braking. However, VW’s about-turn on hybrid technology should lead to a similar character to today’s car.
2020 VW Golf GTI: chassis and underpinnings