What is it?
Every time you read about the new Volkswagen Up GTI, you’re going to read a lot about the Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk1, because Volkswagen has pitched the Up as some kind of homage to its original (albeit perhaps not the original) hot hatch.
The Up and that first Golf have a similar level of power, for example, and not dissimilar performance figures, while all of the original’s design cues have been replicated here; just like they’ve been replicated on every pretty much every GTI from every manufacturer since 1976.
Most notably, though, the Up is meant to have the sparkle, the entertainment, the breath of fresh air that came as standard with that first hot Golf. Talking of fresh air, the Up is among the first cars to have a ‘close-coupled petrol particulate filter’, which Volkswagen says reduces particulate emissions by up to 95%.
So it’s nice to know the company hasn’t lost its sense of humour.
Anyway, during all this homage business there’s one figure they don’t reference, which is that while the Up GTI weighs 1070kg, the first Golf GTI weighed 810kg, despite this city car being not just one but two entire classes lower than the Golf small family hatch.