The new model of the Volkswagen Golf GTI is expected to do as well as its earlier generation. It definitely looks like Volkswagen has taken a step forward in this new GTI since it has used the Mark VI Golf Platform to its advantage. Compared to its other siblings based on the same platform the new GTI Concept is unique since on one side it retains the styling cues of the now older generation but on the other, lurches forward in the performance arena. Responsible for this new design are: Walter de Silva (Director, Group Design), Klaus Bischoff (Director, Brand Design) and Marc Lichte (Director, Exterior Design). The engine plant has the same 2.0-litre four cylinder TSI engine used on the current generation, but belts out almost 10 hp more power than the previous version, developing now 210 hp.
This results into the needle caressing 60 mph (100 km/g) in mere 7.2 seconds while the top speed is limited electronically to 148 mph or 238 km/h which makes it the fastest standard production GTI yet produced. Despite this, the engine is more efficient, returning 37.6 mpg on the combined cycle while the emissions dropped to 178 g/km from 189 g/km of CO2. An early delivery of good torque at low rpm ensures that you get the same thrill in low speed city commutes. 280 Nm of torque at low revs like 1800 rpm and even distribution across the rpm meter also gives advantage of better mileage of 100 km in just 7.5 litres. Volkswagen has been very wise to think about driver pleasure, safety and comfort compared to some other manufacturers. XDS electronic differential, new sporty suspension and DCC adaptive damping are just the indication of Volkswagen engineers wonderful insight into customer needs.
The design of the new concept includes the standard red grille surround used also at the previous version as well as new headlights featuring individual lamp pods behind a translucent cover. The side skirts of the vehicle are replaced by subtle wraparound versions that extend only partially along the lower edge while the rear apron features a new design including a stylish air diffuser framed by a pair of chrome tailpipes. At the interior we find a flat-bottomed steering wheel finished in black leather with contrasting red stitching, a new set of contoured sports seats finished in grey tartan cloth reminiscent of the Mk I and Mk V models are joined by unique instruments and gloss black dashboard and door trim inserts framed by silver highlights. Though details of this new car have not been disclosed, some new features like brakes from Brembo and LED daytime lights will be there in the new GTI. Also, as you see in the photos, the 18 inch 'telephone dial' alloy wheels, used also at the GTI W12-650 concept are anticipated to be there. The concept represents only a first step towards the Golf GTI, which will make its officially debut in spring 2009! No doubt a 10 bhp increase would thrill a racing enthusiast but his heart still pines for a more powerful car. More information when the concept will be officially unveiled at the Paris Motor Show, in October!