VW Unleashes New Golf GTI

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A little bigger, a little lighter and a little more powerful, the new GTI will debut in Geneva.
Volkswagen will be celebrating a veritable Golf-fest at the Geneva show this year. Having just revealed the seventh-generation of the benchmark hatchback back in September, the German automaker has a whole slew of variants lined up for the Swiss expo, including the all-wheel-drive Golf 4Motion, the electric e-Golf and the punchy diesel Golf GTD… but this is the one we’ve been waiting for. The new Golf GTI has just been announced in full, ushering in a new era of Volkswagen hot-hatchness.
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Announced initially in European specification, the new GTI will be available in two states of tune: 220 horsepower as standard (which is already 20 more than the model it replaces), or for the first time, with an optional performance pack that kicks in an extra ten horses for 230 total. Either way, the turbocharged, direct-injection 2.0-liter four churns out 258 lb-ft of torque, and can be mated to a choice of six-speed transmissions in either manual or dual-clutch setups. That’s enough to send the new GTI from 0 to 62 mph in 6.5 seconds and on to a 153mph top speed, or 6.4 and 155 with the performance package.

The latest in a line of GTIs that stretches back to 1976, the new model also rides on a lowered sport suspension, has a pair of chromed exhaust tips poking out the back, a more aggressive aero kit, smoked LED taillamps and red brake calipers inside 17" alloys. Inside you’ll also find the GTI’s signature plaid seats, more aggressive controls and red ambient lighting. In other words, it’s almost identical to the concept version that appeared in Paris last September. Red, black or white will be the only color choices when it goes on sale in Germany in May, with US specs to follow, but not expected to differ too much from the one you see here.