New Volkswagen GTI TCR Is an Extra Spicy Hot Hatch With 286 Horsepower
A boost in horsepower and a hotter appearance fills the space between the GTI and the Golf R.
Last year, Volkswagen revealed a Golf GTI TCR concept inspired by its race-ready touring car, hoping to eventually make the vision a road-going reality. VW announced on Wednesday that it has made its dream become a reality and has opened up orders for a production version of the hot hatch in Europe, bringing about more power and amped-up aesthetics.
The TCR firmly places itself between the current generation GTI and the flagship performance trim Golf R. Outputting a respectable 286 horsepower, the TCR shows a 19 percent power gain over the current production GTI and places itself directly on the heels of the European Golf R's 296 horsepower. Across the Atlantic where the car is currently available for order, the Golf R has a slight existing bump in power to widen the gap between the two trims.
Rather than giving it the all-wheel-drive treatment, Volkswagen has chosen to only send power to the front wheels and provided a locking differential as standard equipment to combat the inevitable foe of torque steer. Unfortunately, this also means that some purists will be disappointed that the Germans have chosen to forego a row-your-own gearbox in favor of its crisp-shifting, seven-speed, dual clutch automatic transmission.
The combination of power and drivetrains allow the GTI TCR to sprint from 0 to 60 miles per hour in just 5.6 seconds, nearly a half-second quicker than the standard-trim GTI and just over a half-second slower than the Golf R.
Certain aesthetic changes come with the TCR as well, including honeycomb decals on the side of the car, a black-painted roof, carbon fiber mirror caps, a notched and stitched flat-bottom steering wheel, and seats with patterns that indicate a subtle nod to its tartan ancestors. VW will also add larger wheels, an adaptive chassis control system, and sportier suspension if you're willing to pony up a bit of extra cash for an upgrade.
But there's a catch: the GTI TCR won't be coming stateside, at least not yet. Volkswagen previously told The Drive that it had no plans to bring the GTI TCR to the Americas, and at the time of writing, that hasn't changed.
Pricing for the TCR trim begins at around 38,950 euros ($44,300 in American money) after taxes, which is aptly between the traditional GTI and Golf R. Additional packages can raise the cost of the TCR $2,677 (2,350 EUR) or $3,645 (3,200 EUR), depending on just how much hotter you flavor the hatch.