What is it?
The Volkswagen Golf R is already one of our favourite superheated hatchbacks here at Autocar towers. Not only is it an immensely talented and supremely entertaining steer, it's also properly usable on an everyday basis in a way that the likes of the Ford Focus RS and FK2 Honda Civic Type R can’t quite manage.
Now, though, Wolfsburg has made its fastest hot hatchback even zestier with the introduction of the Performance Pack. While the Golf R’s already potent turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine doesn’t gain any additional power — remaining at 306bhp at 5500-6500rpm and 280lb ft at 2000-5400rpm — it has been derestricted so that it can now hit a top speed of 166mph.
Uprated R-Performance brakes are also included — these save two kilograms compared with the regular brakes — while a set of larger 19in ‘Spielberg’ alloy wheels replace the standard car’s 18in ones. A new rear spoiler makes an appearance, too.
And the price attached to this new Performance Pack? That’ll be £2,300, thank you very much. It’s worth noting, too, that it can only be specified on DSG-equipped Golf Rs, which cost from £34,255 in three-door guise. So you’re looking at an asking price of at least £36,555.
But wait, there’s more. Launched alongside the Performance Pack is a new titanium sports exhaust made especially for the Golf R by Akrapovic. It was fitted to our test car at an additional cost of £2,975. So, if you fancy a Golf R with the Performance Pack and Akrapovic exhaust, you’ll need to part with at least £39,530. After options, our five-door test car came in at an eye-watering £44,460. Yikes.