Power jumps by 25bhp to 232bhp over the standard car, and torque rises by 7 percent, although the 2.0-litre TSI engine is a detuned variant of the unit seen in the Golf and Scirocco R models, rather than an evolution of that found in the current GTI. Apart from a tweaked exhaust actuator, there are no other mechanical changes.
Exterior trim upgrades include black gloss wing mirrors, front splitter and rear diffuser, plus side skirts from the R and new 18in wheels (with a 19in option) in place of the standard car’s 17-inchers.
In the cabin there are ‘35’ embroidered tartan seats (leather and part-leather upholstery are likely to be optional), honeycomb dash inserts, and a retro golf ball-style gear lever in both manual and DSG examples.
Those new design details add a little more aggression to the car’s image, while the various ‘35’ badges contribute a limited edition feel.
The golf ball gearknob reinterpretation is less effective, though, and looks out of place. While the trim is new, the seats share the same well bolstered but softish structure of the normal GTI pews.
In DSG guise, the reworked exhaust yields the characteristic ‘whump’ sound we enjoy from the Scirocco R, though the engine note is generally more purposeful than inspiring, and drones a little at cruising speed.