It looks fun if a little too controlled.
We've been waiting with bated breath for the local launch of the all-new Volkswagen Golf R. The excitement around this car stems, not only from its straight-line performance, or even the fact that it will be offered with a manual gearbox, but for what it can do when it's intentionally not going in a straight line. The most exciting thing for some of us is the fact that it will have a drift mode, much like the now-dead Focus RS. Wanna see how it works? The video below from Automann-TV shows what drifting the new Golf R looks like, and it seems like lots of fun.
Of course, Volkswagen AG doesn't want any lawsuits from people accidentally offing themselves going around a traffic circle or accelerating away from a set of traffic lights, so you have to confirm your selection of the drift mode, unlike with all the other sporty settings. However, we must say that we're not all that impressed.
Based on the video, it seems that this isn't a true drift mode, although that's not all that surprising from a FWD-biased hot hatch. It seems, rather, that even on slippery surfaces, the Golf R will still try to shuffle power in a way that gets you facing the right way as soon as possible. How easy it will be to achieve drifts on dry tarmac has yet to be seen.
Still, there are other ways of keeping yourself entertained if you have the interests of an eight-year-old. Playing with the throttle and tapping on and off at low speed makes for some fairly loud pops and crackles, while tapping off completely after a stint of acceleration brings about those fashionable burbles that Ford Fiesta ST drivers and vape fanatics seem to love so much. Basically, if you wear your baseball hat backwards, have the name Kyle, and drink a lot of Monster Energy drinks, you're going to love the new Golf R's offerings. We'll stick to Nurburgring mode, thank you very much.