Volkswagen to launch first convertible variant of iconic GTI on June 22

Article by Christian A., on May 27, 2012

Volkswagen will be introducing the first convertible version of GTI on June 22, 2012. For 36 years, the Golf GTI designation has been the standard representation of all sporty compact automobile models. To date, there are more than 1.8 million units of Golf GTI sold. The automaker's GTI was initially introduced as a wild and young vehicle.

It has long been modified to be a highly treasured classic. An aspect that has been consistent from its origin to the current GTI variant is a dynamically designed running gear and a sporty yet economical engine.

Having a model with an open top is going to be a first in the history of GTI. The new Golf GTI Cabriolet will be powered by the 2.0-liter TSI engine, which generates an output of 155 kW / 210 PS (from 5,300 rpm to 6,200 rpm). This is the same power that the classic GTI with a steel and/or panoramic sunroof has.

In particular, this is a GTI direct-injection petrol engine of the EA888 series. The 16-valve four-cylinder turbocharged powerplant provides a torque of as much as 280 Newton meters at a low 1,700 rpm to 5,200 rpm, which is a perfect plateau for a torque curve. The TSI engine accelerates the Golf Cabriolet to 100 km/h from a standstill in only 7.3 seconds. One special feature of the engine is the great flexibility it can offer.

Specifically, the manually shifted Cabriolet can accelerate from 80 to 120 km/h in only 10.5 seconds, making the four-seat, open-top convertible an ideal cruiser. The vehicle achieves a top speed of 237 km/h (DSG: 235 km/h), contrasting with a combined fuel consumption of only 7.6 l/100 km and 177 g/km as the equivalent carbon dioxide emissions (DSG: 7.7 l/100 km and 180 g/km CO2). Moreover, the Golf GTI comes with a dual clutch gearbox -- the only vehicle model to offer the equipment from among other automobiles in the compact class up of to 210 PS.

As with the other GTIs, the convertible is based on a sports chassis, and it is lower by 22 mm in the front axle and 15 mm in the rear. In the front, the trademark MacPherson styled suspension moves on helical springs and collapsible dampers. In the back, a state of the art multi-linked rear suspension makes sure that the ESP rarely needs activation. The braking system is also tremendously sturdy. A distinguishing appearance feature is its callipers that are painted red.

Much like the hard top GTIs, the convertible top model also has standard XDS electric differential locks, which is a feature that improves traction and road handling abilities. Specifically, XDS functionally extends the electric differential lock system (EDS) combined with the vehicle's ESP.

If the system detects that the powered front wheel that is inside a bend is losing its grip with the road, the ESP builds up hydraulic brake pressure at that wheel to re-establish maximum traction. By doing this, the XDS takes the part of a transverse differential lock, making up for the normal understeer typical of front-wheel drive cars as they drive around bends at high speeds. The result is that the XDS creates drive situations that are more exact and controllable.

Also, the adaptive DCC chassis control is an available option for the all new Golf GTI Cabriolet. It will continuously respond to the road and driver situation and will modify the damper settings appropriately. The driver can feel this straight from the major improvements in the easy and energetic performance. Drivers can modify how the system behaves to match their likes because the DCC has three settings.

Not only is there a Normal programme that has damping set at a moderate level, there are also Sport and Comfort settings. The driver can activate his preference with a button located above the gear shift. In the Sport setting, the power steering becomes more dynamically tuned.

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