Fastest Golf GTI ever revealed - but you can’t have it (for now)

8 May 2018

Volkswagen’s Golf GTI is one of the big boys in the hot hatch arena and the German carmaker has just unveiled its fastest version yet.

Revealed during the largest annual GTI meeting in the world at Reifnitz am Wörthersee, the Golf GTI TCR is only a prototype for now, but everything that’s been made public on it so far makes us want it to become a production reality sooner rather than later.

In a nutshell, the 286bhp Golf GTI TCR is a road-legal take on the 345bhp Golf GTI that has triumphed twice in the international TCR touring car race series.

Under the bonnet is a turbo engine that delivers a power output of 286bhp between 5,000 and 6,800 rpm, while its maximum torque of 370 Nm is balanced towards the front axle in a speed range of 1,600 rpm - a value that remains consistently high up to 4,300 rpm.

We’re presuming it’s the same four-pot 1986cc in the standard Golf GTI but that hasn’t been confirmed. Either way, the unit is linked to a quick-shifting seven-speed dual-clutch DSG gearbox that, with a front axle differential lock, handles power transmission and delivers excellent traction.

Performance figures haven’t been made public either, but VW has confirmed that with the Golf GTI TCR’s electronic Vmax limiter speed cap removed, top speed rises from 155mph to 164mph - effectively making it the fastest GTI ever.

Considering the Golf R packs 296bhp - a whole 10bhp more - we’re presuming the TCR wouldn’t be as hot off the mark and in a straight line dash, it’s unlikely to beat the R’s 5.1-second 0-62mph sprint; not without some serious weight and aerodynamic changes anyway.

You may never get chance to drive the Golf GTI TCR but you can lease your ideal Golf right now

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Read more: Mk8 Golf is coming to the UK 
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