Volkswagen has taken the wraps off its latest hot hatch–the 2021 Volkswagen Golf R. Based on the recently-unveiled eighth-generation Volkswagen Golf, the new model is the most capable and high-tech Golf R yet.
But first, let’s talk about the exterior. The Volkswagen Golf R has always featured a more subdued exterior compared to other hot hatches, and that pretty much carries over to this new model. Apart from the more aggressive front and rear bumpers, side skirts, satin silver door mirrors, and the 19-inch alloy wheels, the rest of the design is the same as the normal Golf. That’s not necessarily a bad thing since the Golf R’s conservative design has aged much better over the years compared to most of its rivals. Further setting the Golf R apart is its blue crossbar at the grille, which is constantly illuminated as long as the engine is running.
Just like the exterior, the interior remains largely the same versus the standard Golf. The only major differences are the blue highlights, Nappa Leather sport seats, heated sports steering wheel, and R-specific displays in the digital gauge cluster and 10-inch touch screen infotainment system.
Of course, the main story about the 2021 Volkswagen Golf R is its powertrain. The new, more powerful 2.0-liter inline-4 turbocharged gasoline engine now produces 315 hp (+27 hp) and 420 Nm (+41 Nm) of torque, with power being sent to all four wheels via a 6-speed manual or 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission (DCT). When equipped with the DCT, the Golf R can accelerate from zero to 100 kph in just 4.7 seconds. Top speed is at 250 kph, but opting for the optional R-Performance pack increases the top speed to 270 kph.
The Golf R’s new torque-vectoring all-wheel drive (AWD) system features two modes: Special and Drift. Special mode comes in conjunction with the R-Perf was optimized for use at the Nurburgring Nordschleife. This mode softens the suspension compared to Race mode in order to cope with the undulating surfaces of the iconic German racetrack. On the other hand, Drift mode is basically self-explanatory. The AWD system sends power mostly to the rear wheels and then adjusts the electronic stability control system in order for the driver to make the Golf R drift.
The 2021 Volkswagen Golf R is expected to go on sale in Europe in 2021, while a North American launch will happen in the second half of 2021 and will go on sale as a 2022 model vehicle. Unless Volkswagen starts assembling this hot hatch in China, the chances of the Golf R arriving in the Philippines is almost impossible.