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VW has finally revealed the eight-generation of its iconic performance car. Details about the Golf 8 GTI can now be corroborated as the iconic hot hatch prepares to make its public debut at the Geneva auto show, in March.
Although the styling is restrained and design details slightly demurer than its rivals from Honda or Renault, the new GTI promises to provide a deeply engaging driving experience.
Distinguishing GTI from other Golf 8 variants is an enlarged lower front air intake, which frames a small surface area grille. Detailing the upper portion of this grille, is an illuminated strip, and there is a new grouping of fog-lights, arranged in an X-pattern.
Around the rear this new GTI is identifiable thanks to its integrated and functional diffuser, which is homed below the bumper.
Standard wheels will be 17-inches, with VW offering 18- and 19-inch options for those GTI customers who live in geographies served by excellently maintained roads.
Powering VW new GTI is a familiar engine, the company’s EA888. Displacing 2-itres of capacity boosted by a low-inertia turbocharger, this latest tune delivers 180kW and 370Nm. Those outputs tally notable improvements on the current Golf 7.5 GTI, which is rated at 169kW and 350Nm.
VW will continue to offer a six-speed manual gearbox with the new GTI, although most markets have seen a huge reduction in demand for clutch-pedal transmissions. Expect nearly all South African Golf 8 GTIs to be configured with the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.
Ensuring that this new GTI has all the dynamic agility one would expect from VW’s vaunted performance car badge, there are adjustable dampers at all four wheel corners. Preventing front wheel scrabble, when accelerating at peak power with a lot of steering lock applied, is VW’s XDS differential.
The XDS system uses accelerometers and sophisticated braking algorithms to mimic the traditional function of a mechanical limited-slip differential, without inducing drag.
The VW Golf 8 is set to launch in South Africa towards the end of 2020.
Feature image: VW