Back at the 2012 Paris Motor Show, Volkswagen took the wraps off the seventh generation of the Golf for the first time. Based on the new MQB platform, the Golf is in a league of its own. The critics loved it - the styling is spot on, the packaging is perfect, the technology is phenomenal, the refinement levels are excellent and the price is impressive!
Following a blockbuster launch (about 120k bookings), VW plans to introduce four new variants of the Golf lineup at the Geneva Motor Show. The first has to be and is the Golf GTI, a car that started the hot hatch revolution in the world.
VW Golf GTI
[Volkswagen Golf GTI]
Based on the seventh generation platform, the Golf GTI is more powerful and lighter than its predecessor. The new Golf GTI is powered by a 2.0-litre TSI engine good for 217bhp, 10 bhp more than the outgoing model. While an increase of 10bhp is not very ‘heart stopping’, you can order the Performance Package which pushes the figure to 227bhp. Gear shifting is done by a six-speed DSG gearbox.
With the new MQB architecture, the GTI is 42 kg lighter than the predecessor. The 0-100 km/hr time has been slashed to 6.5 seconds in the standard model and 6.4 seconds in the Performance Package. It is also 18% more fuel efficient now.
To visually distinguish it from the normal Golf, the GTI gets a more aggressive bodykit, a rear spoiler, twin chrome exhaust pipes and 17-inch Brooklyn alloy wheels. Standard features include front and rear parking sensors, a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system and automatic climate control.
VW Golf GTD
[Volkswagen Golf GTD]
The second model is the GTD, which is like a GTI but for diesel dominated markets. It is powered by a 2.0-litre turbo diesel engine which generates 184PS and 380Nm of torque mated to a six speed DSG gearbox. 0-100 km/hr is a slightly slower 7.5 seconds but fuel economy is close to 20kmpl.
The GTD variant gets visual upgrades such as smoked headlamps and taillamps, 17-inch alloys, side skirts, rear diffuser, a rear spoiler, black roof-lining, tartan seats, sports steering wheel and stainless steel pedals.
Next in line is the e-Golf or EV variant of the Golf. It is powered by an electric motor that develops 115 bhp. The motor sources its power from a 26.5 kWh lithium-ion battery back. Range is approximately 175 km and the charging time is close to 5 hours. 0-100 km/hr comes in 11.8 seconds. The three modes of driving available are Normal, Eco and Range. Eco increases the range by limiting the power and top speed whereas Range goes one step further and even shuts down the air-conditioner.
VW Golf Plug-In Hybrid
The final variant is the Plug-In Hybrid which shares the Audi A3 e-tron's drivertrain. Power comes from a combination of a turbocharged 1.4L engine and a 101 hp electric motor. The range in pure electric mode is just 31 miles but the acceleration time from 0-100kph is reduced to 7.6 seconds.
No images of the Plug-In Hybrid are available yet but we'll get them for you from the Geneva unveiling.