Thursday 21st of September 2023

Driving An Icon: Volkswagen Golf GTI

By Shereen Shabnam

There are few cars that become an icon whereby its design DNA and character remain recognisable for decades. And Golf GTI is one of them. For over four decades, Volkswagen has been reinventing this icon of sporty, compact cars while retaining the original concept – generation after generation. The newly designed and engineered Golf GTI is perfect for our needs today and while it is compact, it suits the needs of pretty much every age group and profile.


The new generation of Volkswagen Golf GTI remains as defined as ever, with a distinctive C-pillar, roofline framing, and classic Golf GTI side windows except for the striking new dynamic front end and steeply sloped hood that makes it different from previous generations.

The sporty Golf models has a lot of charisma with a striking outline. The standard LED headlights are positioned low down and form a striking crossbar in conjunction with the radiator grille. The side section features the eye-catching, standard 18-inch alloy wheels, unique to the GTI. The GTI lettering at the back is now positioned centrally under the Volkswagen emblem rather than on the driver side as it was before.  


In the interior, the spacious cabin has an emphasis on comfort and a substantial features list. The top-of-the-range version of the Digital Cockpit and the 10-inch navigation system merge to form the Innovision Cockpit. The colour and graphics of the Digital Cockpit correspond to the respective model.

The driver controls are positioned to help optimize ergonomics and usability. The seat position, height of the shifter and the spacing between the pedals are fine-tuned for increased driver comfort. This driver-centric design focus is evident from the center stack, which is angled towards the driver, a feature often seen in premium luxury or performance vehicles. The newGolf GTI models feature Volkswagen’s innovative MIB II touchscreen infotainment system similar to a smart phone and easy to use.


The new Golf GTI is powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine and maximum torque of 370 Nm. The engine is coupled with an automatic 7-speed dual clutch gearbox (DSG), and a brand new GTI gear knob. It can take you from 0 to 100 km/h in just 6.2 seconds and can reach a top speed of 250 km/h.

The car setup can be extended in INDIVIDUAL mode to go beyond the existing range of the fixed COMFORT, ECO and SPORT modes. The drivers can also accurately set and store personal driving profiles using a digital slider.


My first car was a Golf and I bought it because I needed a car that was fast, nippy had a soul of a sports car. The new Golf GTI is much more than that and still looks good, easy to park, has enough space for a small family, responds fast in any situation and is so much fun to drive.

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