Editor: Jason “The Bok” – Date: 04 Aug 2017
The Golf GTI has been the benchmark name sake in hot hatchery for more than 40-years. This is the latest Golf GTI or as it’s known by some, the Golf GTI 7.5
- Engine: 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder turbopetrol
- Power: 169 kW : Torque: 350 Nm
- Transmission: 6-speed dual-clutch
- 0-100 kph: 6.4 seconds
- Price: R545 800 (base spec) current test vehicle with options (R644,000)
- Other Competitors Include: Ford Focus ST : Mercedes-Benz A250 Sport : BMW M140i
From the front, you can immediately notice its sharper more aggressive Clubsport inspired styling. The GTI badge and slick red line which extends from the grill and onto the front LED lighting, as well as its pin-sharp, LED rear tail lights and the inclusion of the very tasty new Volkswagen 19″ Santiago alloys (optional R8,100) which can be specced on this latest generation GTI really make it very distinguishable.
Perhaps the biggest changes, however, can be seen on the inside. This really is the GTI which takes the vehicle into the 21st century in terms of technology. While many of the clever toys are optional extra’s, the available list is very extensive.
Major spec options which were fitted to the test car include the likes of, the fully digital instrumentation cluster, or as its known in the Audi stable, the Virtual Cockpit. The system is frankly brilliant! It clear, customisable and allows for viewing of media sources, Bluetooth telephony, a track timer and even your navigation display. The digital cluster costs R8,000 and to take full advantage of the technology it must integrated into the massive 9.2-inch Discover Pro central media system which is even controllable with motion gestures and costs R20,200.
Another great to have feature is PDC with its ultra-vivid reversing camera and proximity lines at a cost of R4,750. The vehicle under review also had the radar-guided cruise control function with frontal collision assist which will detect and prevent an accident of a vehicle stopping ahead, this system is available for R5,000.
The word “Vrrrpaaa” was almost certainly coined for this car. With its 2.0-four cylinder motor which develops a very healthy 169 kW and 350 Nm of torque, 0-100 km/h is achieved in a shade over 6-seconds(0-100/6.4secs). The power surge is steady, however, in typical GTI style, the vehicle remains comfortable and civilised when you want it to be, and can become a bit of an animal if that’s whats called for!
By referring to the “GTIness,” I am referring to the way in which a Golf GTI manages to be a true all-rounder. With a spacious interior that can accommodate 4 adults in comfort, a generous boot which can be expanded with the seats dropped in their 60:40 split and the ability to configure your GTI any which way that you choose.
This latest generation Volkswagen Golf GTI really does take the iconic car into the 21st century. While it has grown-up somewhat it still remains a proper thriller which is as good at setting your hair on fire, as it is playing chess.