News, Sports Car, Hatchback

Clubsport marks 40 years of the Golf GTI

Volkswagen will mark the Golf GTI's 40th anniversary with a special edition - the new GTI Clubsport.

The legendary model reaches its milestone at the beginning of next year, however Volkswagen is presenting the production version of the new Golf GTI Clubsport at the Frankfurt Motor Show - offering a first glimpse of the most powerful production GTI ever.

Continuing the tradition of GTI anniversary models (as special editions also marked the 20th, 25th, 30th and 35th birthdays), the turbocharged direct-injection engine in the new anniversary model delivers an output of 195 kW / 265 PS - 35 PS more than on the previous most powerful Golf GTI.

Another special feature on the 40th anniversary GTI is a kick down mode that, for a short time (approximately 10), the driver can increase engine power by an additional 10 per cent to over 290 PS. This added power is activated simply by kicking down the accelerator.

The Golf GTI Clubsport sprints to 62mph in 6.0 seconds with the 6-speed manual gearbox while the optional 6-speed dual-clutch gearbox (DSG) is even faster at 5.9 seconds, while top speed is 155mph. With a manual gearbox, fuel consumption comes in at 160 g/km CO2 (or 155 g/km CO2 with the DSG).

Not only has Volkswagen given the anniversary model's engine more power, it has also 'extensively' revised the design, equipment and aerodynamics. The Golf GTI Clubsport is finished in Oryx White with contrasting black roof. A completely new front bumper, new side sills, a new rear diffuser joins the new multi-part roof spoiler and optional, exclusive 'Bresica' 19-inch forged alloy wheels for the anniversary model (the standard-fit forged 18-inch alloy wheels are also newly designed).

In terms of style, the side profile is based on the original GTI version with a wide black trim stripe between the front and rear wheel arches at bumper level. This stripe has now been transferred to the side area of the anniversary model, paying homage to the 1976 Golf GTI, and features 'Clubsport' lettering. The redesigned roof edge spoiler, perfected in the wind tunnel, is much larger than its counter part on the current GTI. There is a narrow air gap between the roof area that is entirely in black and the wing-like spoiler placed above it.

The lower rear section has also been individualised, says VW. The line of the wrap-around splitter, below the sill, continues in to large high-glass black rear diffuser that is also a new development. The redesigned and chrome-plated tailpipes of the twin-pipe exhaust system have been integrated in the diffuser and the diameter of the tailpipes is much larger than on the familiar Golf GTI models. The LED rear lights come in dark black-red.

The interior features iconic GTI details including ergonomic sports seats with a tailor-made look, tartan fabric upholstery, red topstitching, a gear knob in golf ball design and a black headliner. The anniversary model also features folding racing bucket seats instead of sport seats. The seats are partially covered with Alcantara and feature a honeycomb pattern in the area of the back rests and seat cushions; the backrest also incorporates "GTI" lettering. A red line enhances the seat belts, and new trim strips in 'Honeycomb 40' design (instrument strip, centre console and doors) give the interior an even more 'exclusive' appearance says VW. Sporty decorative features include Alcantara trim on the gear lever, new lenses on the gear knob, the Alcantara sport steering wheel (with GTI emblem, red seam and 12 o'clock marking) and customised floor mats with red edging. When the driver and front passenger open the doors, they see the exclusive stainless steel door sill plates with red GTI lettering.

The Frankfurt Motor Show runs from 17-27 September 2015.