Despite receiving the biggest portion of Volkswagen’s limited-run two-seat hot hatch, UK order books have closed after being open for just a couple of months. In total, just 400 examples of the GTI Clubsport S are being sold worldwide. The first cars are expected to arrive on British roads this October.
Volkswagen’s 306bhp two-seater model can lay claim to being the fastest production front-wheel-drive car to lap the Nürbgurgring. It snatched the title from the Honda Civic Type R back in May after racing driver Benny Leuchter hustled an unmodified car around the 12.9-mile lap in 7min 49.21sec, 1.4sec faster than the Civic (watch the onboard here).
Most of the Clubsport S’s additional performance over the GTI Clubsport 40, upon which it is based, comes thanks to its lighter weight, extra grunt and small but influential aerodynamic modifications.
Evidence for the gains can be found in the numbers: the Clubsport S’s 2.0-litre turbocharged engine is 45bhp more potent than the Clubsport 40’s and its chassis weighs 35kg less. This means power-to-weight is rated at 225bhp/ton – which is on par with the extreme Renault Clio RS16.
Additionally, the Clubsport S’s chassis has been fine-tuned for fast driving at the Nürburgring. Autocar’s Matt Prior got to sample the car’s ability for himself a few weeks after the lap record was broken (see below).
Volkswagen says no further right-hand-drive Clubsport Ss are destined for the UK market. All 150 cars have been priced from £33,995, which is £3055 more than the regular Clubsport 40.
Volkswagen isn’t limiting the production numbers of the Clubsport 40, so buyers after the Clubsport experience can still purchase one. However, the 40 will likely be culled long before the end of the current Mk7 Golf’s production life, in order to keep itt fairly exclusive.