The latest and most powerful Volkswagen Golf R, 290 horsepower, 380Nm of torque, 0 to 100 km/h in 5 seconds, 250 km/h top speed, on a F1 track. Now, let your imagination take over, go wild.
Volkswagen Group Malaysia (VGM) launched the latest R edition of the Mk7 Golf subtly without any fancy launch gambit. Why? That’s because it’s not a car for the mass and most importantly not many would think “Damn, I wish the new Golf GTI has more power”.
Well, the third and latest addition to the Mk7 Golf line up is here in Malaysia for that sole purpose, to deliver more power. We had the chance to experience the R factor on the Sepang F1 (half) Circuit.
A fleet of gorgeous Lapiz Blue 5-door hot hatch cured our Monday blues, with a set of voluptuous 19-inch 5-spoke Cadiz alloy wheels. Underneath the hood is a newly designed 2.0-liter turbocharged TSI engine, that is itching to unleash all 290 horsepower and 380Nm of torque.
So, we did. Engine start and idling sound has not much to shout about. Same goes to the slow pit lane drive, in fact, it sounded very decent. Very civilized, up until I floored it as I entered the track. It was spine tingling. The famous ‘DSG farts’ from every gear change reaches a whole new level. Even with the helmet and balaclava on, it was was loud. In a yummy way.
The 5-door variant comes with Tech Pack as standard which includes a long list of things. Here are some that’re worth mentioning; 19-inch Cadiz wheels, Dynamic Chassis Control (DCC) with driving profile selection, Vienna leather seats with ‘R’ logo on back rest, and an additional 10 horsepower under your right foot.
Performance figures are impressive, century sprint in 5 seconds and it goes up to 250km/h. However, with such amount of power packed in to a little hatchback, is it still drivable? Yes, very much drivable even on a track; but VW had a lot to do to avoid ending up in a ditch all the time.
Firstly, its latest version of 4MOTION system with a fifth-gen Haldex coupling distributing power to the front or rear wheels when required, makes sure you get the grip you need at all times. Then there’s the improved XDS+, which minimizes understeer tremendously by slowing down the inside wheels slightly and giving more torque to the outer wheels when taking corners. Together with the progressive steering, they make a perfect combination for a precise and agile drive.
This new Golf R feels so much lighter than the Mk6 variant, thanks for the Modular Transverse Matrix (MQB) platform that sheds 46kg of weight. All 380Nm of torque catapults its light weight body from 0 to 100 in 5 seconds flat. Brakes are good allowing late braking and turning into corners at high speed feels so easy. Every input from the progressive steering translated accurately onto both front wheels, darting into and out of chicanes with ease.
Its Electronic Differential Lock or XDS+ did its magic. Simply pulling in the car inwards at every fast cornering, resulting minimal understeer. In loose terms, you can throw the car in and out of corners like a moron and can still make out of it alive, in style. It is that good.
VGM describes it as a ‘sports car’. Well, yes and no. Sports cars are uncomfortable. The Golf R is surprisingly comfortable. I would call it a sporty car, that you can own, drive to work, take your kids to school, do grocery shopping and go bonkers on track days.
We will carry out a full review on the 2014 VW Golf R soon and even better, video review as well! So, stick around for more of the new R. For now, get more info here.