295 hp front-drive GTI
Gets new chassis control integrated locking diff
There’s a new GTI in town, the latest version to be dubbed Clubsport, and this Mk 8 Volkswagen Golf should give the R a serious run for the money not just in the fun department, but when it comes to all-out performance. That’s thanks to 295 hp from the 2.0L turbo-four.
Running the latest version of VW’s EA888 turbo engine, the new Volkswagen Golf GTI Clubsport puts that impressive 295 hp and the same amount of torque to the front wheels via a standard seven-speed dual-clutch box. And while you might cringe at that two-pedal selection, remember that this is a GTI. Plus there’s more, with the new Vehicle Dynamics Manager working to control standard electromechanical locking front differential for the first time.
VW says that networking all the driving systems, including that diff, “means that the new Golf GTI Clubsport handles even more neutrally and precisely than the classic Golf GTI.” As an added bonus for anyone headed to Europe, there is a Nürburgring profile that automatically adapts the Clubsport’s bits to that track.
The Clubsport is set apart from lesser GTI models visually thanks to the different front end with an open-looking front bumper and larger aerodynamic elements. A two-piece spoiler at the rear stands out and Volkswagen calls it a hallmark of the Clubsport model. The aero changes, Volkswagen says, “significantly increase” downforce. The GTI Clubsport is also 10 mm lower and wears wider side sills plus oval tailpipes in place of the usual round ones.
Inside is mostly standard GTI, but it does offer premium sports seats and aluminum look pedals. No GTI tartan appears in the photo, and if that’s not offered it would be a shame. A shame that 295 hp should more than make up for.