Published on September 10th, 2022 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Volkswagen Golf R Mk8 Drive Impression
Here we share why the Golf R will continue to have high desire.
When VW Golf GTI owners are asked why they purchased a Golf GTI and not a Golf 1.4 TSI, they always start with the given performance figures which is the combination of a sporty chassis and a fast reacting engine.
From the first ever Golf (mk1) right up to the current eight version, the GTI has been providing this drive excitement that has had all its rivals producing a competing product.
Meanwhile, the VW Golf GTI has been the global market leader in the hot hatch segment. So, with this success under its sleeve it was obvious that the rivals were not going to sit quietly.
Some rivals have done better, some have come close and others could not shake the GTI from its perch.
Did you know that the Golf GTI is a phenomenon, a brand within the Volkswagen brand, an automobile world view and an unmistakable design statement that has now attained sales of almost 1.8 million units globally?
It is an original among sporty compacts. Many stories have been shared and circulated about how the first GTI (Gran Turismo Injection) came into being. That’s for another day.
Then there were requests for even more powerful Golf to challenge its German rivals. So, the ‘Golf R’ was born.
Volkswagen kept introducing the Golf R range after every new Golf GTi (from the Mk3 onwards) was launched and so we now have the latest 2021 model Golf R. Launched just months ago, this is Volkswagens rival to the Mercedes-AMG A35, Renault Megane R.S., Honda Civic Type R and the BMW 135i hatch.
This new R car has 320 horsepower as well as 400Nm of torque. With standard 4Motion® all-wheel drive, this Volkswagen Golf R can sprint from 0 to 100km/h in just 4.8 seconds, on its way to a top track speed of 249km/h.
Park it and take a few steps back and you will see some ‘neat’ additions to the GTI to make this ‘R”. Equipped with stylish 19″ Adelaide alloy wheels, R emblems, re-designed bumpers and air intakes, a new diffuser design in high-gloss black and twin tailpipes on either side of the rear bumper, it is only noticed by true enthusiasts.
Blue (Lapiz Blue) is the hero colour for the Golf R, so there is a blue strip across the front of the vehicle and blue brake caliper (you can also get Deep Black and Pure White for your R).
Step inside and the deep sculptured front seats confirms its sporting intentions. This new Golf R comes with a 480W, 10-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, a 10″ Digital Infotainment System with Wireless App Connect for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It also has a 10″ Digital Cockpit with exclusive R-View.
With the R-View you get details such as output, torque distribution, charge pressure, a lap timer and G-meter in live view. It also has a 30-colour ambient lighting system and triple zone climate control.
There’s also a multifunctional sport steering wheel with a blue backlit ‘R’ button to activate Race mode. It also gets enlarged shift paddles.
Ignite the engine and the mild rumble confirms its intentions. With this Golf R, you need to get seating position right so that you have good control when abusing it. Yes, this hatch was deigned to be abused (not tortured) as it delivers 400Nm from a low 2,000rpm which means its mid-range power delivery is intense.
Choose ‘Sport’ for daily commuting as this is why you bought a R and not a base TSI. When you have an open highway then ‘Race’ is needed, especially when a supercar irritates you on the road.
At ‘Race’ you will immediately hear the engine note rising with an aggressive light tone and the engine revs get perkier. Push this Golf R thru traffic and find some open tarmac and its quick, very quick under trained hands and super quick when you know what you are doing.
Under the right palms, this Golf R entertains at every gear change which is executed either via paddle shifting or just letting the computer work the seven speed gearbox as it knows the right spacing’s between them.
Steering inputs are firm and direct and as speed builds up very fast you need to keep your eyes peeled only at the road ahead and not the working R View which is more for entertaining your passenger.
By the way, VW communication states that this is ‘the most powerful Golf yet’, however, having owned 5 different VW GTI’s to date, we say this about this new R ‘it is the most entertaining and fun Golf yet’!
Meanwhile at RM389k, this Mk8 R is almost RM179,000 more expensive than the Mk8 GTI making the decision to purchase be somewhat confusing for most. The acceleration time is just less than 2 seconds faster and the torque just 30Nm more.
So, why the big price difference? Well the Mk8 GTI is locally assembled in Pekan and the Mk8 R is fully imported. That’s why!
In conclusion, visit a VW showroom and arrange a test drive to be totally smitten by it.
Volkswagen Golf R (2022) Specifications
Engine: 4-cylinder Turbocharged EA888
Power: 320bhp @ 5,600-6,500rpm
Torque: 400Nm @ 2,000-5,600rpm
Transmission: 7-speed DSG
Top speed: 249km/h
In case you were wondering ….. here below are the figures for the current Mk8 GTI.
Volkswagen Golf GTI Mk8 Specifications
Engine: 4-cylinder Turbocharged 16V
Power: 242bhp @ 5000-6500rpm
Torque: 370Nm @ 1600-4300rpm
Transmission: 7-speed DSG
Top speed: 250km/h